HC takes suo-moto cognisance to postpone JEE-NEET exams in view of sudden flood in Vidarbha

Nagpur HC

Nagpur : The Bombay High Court on Monday said that it has taken a suo-motu cognisance of the flood-affected students of Vidarbha region by asking the union government that can the JEE-NEET entrance test of students from flood-affected areas, like Nagpur, Bhandara, Gondia, Chandrapur and other parts of Vidarbha be postponed in the wake of sudden flood in the region. Both the examinations have been scheduled on Tuesday in different centres across the country.

This is probably for the first in the history of Bombay high court that the upper court has taken such a suo-moto cognisance just few hours before the examination. A large area of these districts has been devastated due to incessant rains and floods due to which more than 17,000 students of Nagpur, Bhandara and Gondia district alone are unable to attend the tests, scheduled on Tuesday morning.

On the basis of a letter, written by an aspirant of the examination, the court sought to know during a special hearing held on Monday evening that can the union government postpone the examination for few days in view of such emergency situation in the region. The student in his letter narrates the difficult situation faced by students across the Vidarbha region, particularly Nagpur, Bhandara, Chandrapur, Gadchiroli and Gondia reeling under the torrential rains and resultant inability to travel and appear in this life-changing and career-deciding examination. “The aspirants were also unable to study the relevant courses of the examinations during the last crucial moment because of sudden fury of the flood in the area. Besides the power supply, transport and lodging-boarding facility have been badly affected in these districts,” the letter said and pointed out that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has already aggravated the situation.

While converting the letter, received from the student, into a public interest litigation, a division bench of the high court, comprising, Justice Ravi Deshpande and Justice Pushpa Ganediwala served notices to the union government and the state and asked them to reply by tomorrow morning that can the government postpone the examinations for few days in view of the situation. The next hearing is slated at 8.30 am on Tuesday, few hours before the entrance test will commence.