SC junks plea to postpone GATE-2022, says it will create "chaos and uncertainty"
New Delhi, February 3, 2022
The Supreme Court on Thursday declined to postpone the GATE-2022 examination saying that postponement will create "chaos and uncertainty" in the lives of students who have registered for it.
A bench headed by Justice D. Y. Chandrachud and comprising Justices Surya Kant and Vikram Nath said the court is not willing to entertain a petition 48 hours before the examination, as it will create chaos and uncertainty in the lives of the students who have already registered for it.
The bench was informed that over 9 lakh students are taking the GATE-2022
The bench added that there is no overarching reason for it to exercise its jurisdiction under Article 32 of the Constitution, to supplant the duties and functions of the regulatory authorities who have taken a decision in connection with the schedule of the exam. The bench pointed out that now everything is opening up and it is not correct for courts to step into academic matters.
The bench said: "We are not inclined to entertain a petition under Article 32...These petitions are accordingly dismissed."
Advocate Satpal Singh, representing a petitioner, contended that many state governments have imposed a lockdown on weekends, and in this backdrop holding the examination is unfair and urged the court to defer it for a month.
The bench told the petitioner's counsel that some petitioners have moved before it and many others have already prepared for the examination. It pointed out that the examinations were notified in August last year and 9 lakh are appearing for it, and 20,000 have signed an online petition. "Only authorities can look into this," said the bench.
Justice Chandrachud queried the petitioners' counsel, "Look at the legitimacy of courts entering into these thickets. Just because some states have issues, how do we play with the careers of all students..."
After a detailed hearing in the matter, the top court dismissed the pleas seeking postponement of the examination in the backdrop of third Covid wave.
The Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) is an examination to test the comprehensive understanding of various undergraduate subjects in engineering and science for admission into the Masters Programme as well as for recruitment by some public sector companies.
GATE 2022 is conducted by the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur and six other IITs in Mumbai, Delhi, Guwahati, Kanpur, Chennai, Roorkee and the Indian Institute of Science at Bengaluru on behalf of the National Coordination Board – GATE, The Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Education (MoE), Government of India. The organising Institute for GATE 2022 is IIT Kharagpur.