AIPMT re-conduct: SC extends time; results to be out by Aug 17

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New Delhi, Jun 19: The Supreme Court on Friday extended time for re-conducting the All India Pre Medical Test-2015 and directed CBSE to declare the results by August 17 after the board had pleaded that it would be impossible for it to hold the test afresh in four weeks.

The apex court's order came on a petition by Central Board of Secondary Examination (CBSE) for extension of time to conduct the AIPMT afresh.

aipmt

The court, while quashing on June 15 the AIPMT-2015 on the ground of large-scale irregularities, had asked CBSE to re-conduct the exam within four weeks.

Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for CBSE, told a bench of justices R K Agrawal and A M Sapre that four weeks time is insufficient for re-conducting the examination.

Rohatgi said the exam would be conducted at around 1000 centres and since vacations are going on, there is shortage of teachers. He said that the board also needs time to prepare the question papers again.

"A large number of schools would be required for the exam. There is shortage of teachers, invigilators and para-military forces," he said.

The Attorney General said that normally the board needs around seven months time to hold examinations but "we have compromised and seek only three months time".

However, the court said, "In the past everything was done in one month. We are living in an era of technology and everything is possible now."

During the hearing, Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for Medical Council of India (MCI), which conducts counselling, urged CBSE to squeeze its time period and hold the exam within the period decided by the apex court.

"We are not in adversarial litigation. We are only concerned with future of the students. If the deadline is not maintained, only state quota seats would be filled. Thus there will be two parallel batches for the same course which will affect future post-graduate admissions and ultimately students will suffer," he said.

The bench said, "Work out the things together as you are sailing in the same boat. We have got genuine difficulty and we cannot do away with the dispute."

CBSE had yesterday told the court that it would be "impossible" for it to re-conduct in four weeks the scrapped exam as earlier directed by the apex court in its June 15 order.

The Supreme Court had directed the re-examination in view of large-scale cheating in the test with students getting answers in the examination hall at many places.

Earlier, the court had said that the examination stands vitiated even if one student is being benefited illegally. It had said that CBSE could not be held guilty as such but taking into consideration the past incidents, "CBSE ought to have been cognisant of these things".

CBSE, however, had opposed the contentions seeking cancellation of the test, saying, "6.3 lakh students cannot be made to take the exam afresh when only 44 students have been found involved in taking benefits through unfair means."

Earlier, the vacation bench had asked Haryana Police to file a fresh report indicating the number of beneficiaries of the alleged irregularities in the pre-medical examination.

It had also asked the police to identify as many candidates as possible who had been benefited from the alleged leak.

CBSE was to declare the results of AIPMT, taken by over six lakh students, on June 5 but it was stayed by the Supreme Court.

The court had said, "The bigger issue is that the sanctity of the examination is under suspicion. We want to be doubly sure that there is no alternative but to order re-conduct of the exam," adding that it did not want to take a decision "in haste".

PTI

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