Tribune News Service
New Delhi, September 24
Amid growing number of COVID-19 cases, a group of 20 students has moved the Supreme Court seeking postponement of Civil Services Examinations 2020 by two-three months.
The Civil Services Preliminary Exam 2020 is scheduled to be held on October 4. The seven- hour-long offline exam is expected to be taken by approximately six lakh aspirants at test centres in 72 cities across India, the petitioners submitted.
“Conducting the aforesaid examination across India at such perilous time is nothing else but putting lives of lakhs of young students (including Petitioners herein) at utmost risk and danger of disease and death,” submitted the petition filed by Vasireddy Govardhana Sai Prakash and 19 other civil services aspirants.
A Bench headed by Justice AM Khanwilkar on Thursday gave liberty to the petitioners to serve a copy of the petition on the UPSC counsel and posted the matter for further hearing on September 28.
“Liberty is granted to serve advance copy on the Standing Counsel for the Union Public Service Commission as well as on the Standing Counsel for the Central Agency representing Union of India through email/online,” it said.
The petitioners contended the UPSC’s decision to conduct the exam in accordance with the revised calendar, violated their rights under Article 19 (1) (g) of the Constitution to practise their chosen profession/occupation of serving the public.
Natural calamities such as flood, incessant rain and landslides were likely to directly affect the life and health of petitioners and many similarly situated students, they said seeking postponement of the exam by two-three months.
Being a recruitment examination, Civil Services Exam was altogether different from an academic exam and in the event of its postponement, there would not be any question of delay or loss of any academic session, they submitted.
“Hence, the impugned Revised Calendar is utterly arbitrary, unreasonable, whimsical and patently violative of the ‘Right to Health’ and ‘Right to Life’ of the Petitioners herein and lakhs of similarly situated students, under Article 21,” the petitioners contended.