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DU admission norms could have been declared earlier

DU admission norms could have been declared earlier

New Delhi: Delhi University recent decision to change the admission norms for various undergraduate courses could have been announced much earlier, the Delhi high court observed on Friday while hearing pleas against the varsity for effecting them just a day before the registrations were to commence.

"There is no dispute that you have to be in tune with the times. Nothing prevents you from improving education standards. No one is saying your decision (amendment) is not right, but your timing may not be right," a bench of Justices Anu Malhotra and Talwant Singh said.

The observation by the bench came while hearing three petitions challenging Delhi University's recently amended eligibility criteria for admissions to several undergraduate courses, including BCom (Hons) and BA (Hons) Economics, which require that Maths be part of the best of four subjects.

Aggregate of marks in top four (best of four) subjects of a student is considered to ascertain if he or she makes the cut-off set by a college for a particular course. During the more than an hour long arguments, the court said the eligibility criteria were meant for students who gave the 2018-19 Class 12 board exams and DU's amended norms came a day before start of registration.

"Can you (DU) change it a day before? You could have given three months prior notice to students," the bench said and reserved its verdict in the matter after hearing extensive arguments in the matter.

Defending its decision, the varsity said it changes the eligibility criteria for courses every year and the Bulletin of Information (BIS) was meant for only one particular academic year and was not a statutory rule.

Therefore, there was no need to give prior notice before making changes to the BIS, the university said.

Its lawyers also told the court that no student would be deprived of admission due to the new norms and if anyone is affected they can approach its grievance committee or the court.

They urged the bench not to interfere at this stage saying that it could disrupt the entire academic time table for the current year. The petitions, two PILs and one plea by a student, have contended that students have been caught unaware as the eligibility criteria for some courses have been changed a day before opening of registration on May 30.

The petitioners claimed that change in the eligibility criteria of various courses, including BCom (Hons) and BA (Hons) in Economics, was illegal and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution as it was done arbitrarily, without any prior notice.

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