The Delhi High Court has asked the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to consider the representation of a parents body seeking directions to allow final year students of various universities to stay in hostels or paying guest accommodations, that were closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, during exams.
Justice Jayant Nath has said that the authorities should treat the writ petition as a representation and deal with the same as per law. “Appropriate orders may be passed and communicated to the petitioner (parents body),” the High Court said. The court passed the order while disposing of a petition filed by Juvvadi Sagar Rao, founder of Telangana Parents Foundation, seeking direction to the authorities to decide his representation.
The plea also sought directions to the Ministry of Home Affairs, Department of Higher Education and Department of Health and Family Welfare to take measures for conducting final year exams and entrance exams for higher studies without causing trouble to students.
The petition, filed through advocates Sravan Kumar & R Balaji, said that due to the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions, government and private hostels as well as paying guest accommodations were closed except for a few government university-run hostels. This has been causing immense difficulty for the final year students of various universities belonging to rural areas who stay in such accommodations, the petition said.
The petition added that since exams are scheduled to be conducted during September-October by the universities on the direction of the Department of Higher Education/ University Grants Commission, the representation should be considered and appropriate guidelines may be passed by the authorities in the interest of lakhs of final year students in the country. “Now the examination schedule has been issued by various universities, it has become very difficult for the final year students to find accommodation during the present COVID-19 circumstances,” the plea said.