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Final-year university exams likely to be cancelled; UGC asked to revisit guidelines

Vishnu Vasisht

Guidelines have been given to keep colleges and schools across the country closed due to Coronavirus. Examinations and classes have also been postponed taking care of children and their health. Union Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank has asked the University Grants Commission (UGC) to revise the previously issued guidelines for intermediate and terminal semester examinations and academic calendars. Pokhriyal said that the revised guidelines should take into account the health and safety of teachers and students and employees. The education minister has said this in view of the increasing cases of coronavirus.

On his official Twitter handle, the minister wrote, "I have advised @ugc_india to reissue the previously issued guidelines for intermediate and terminal semester examinations and academic calendars. The revised guidelines will lay the foundation for health and safety students, teachers and staff".

In the previously released guidelines for examinations and academic calendars, the UGC (University Grants Commission) asked for the examination of the students of the last semester to be held in July. It also said that the new academic session for freshers could start in universities from September and the session for students already registered will start in August.

The UGC had said that intermediate students will be graded based on the internal assessment of the current and previous semester. In states where the status of Covid-19 is normal, there will be examinations in the month of July. For terminal semester students, the exam will be held in July.

Recently UGC issued a notice regarding extension of dates for joining the Dr DS Kothari Post Doctoral Fellowship Scheme, in which candidates have to join the fellowship within 3 months of receiving the award letter. The Commission has extended the joining period to 6 months as the candidates were facing difficulty in joining the concerned organizations due to the outbreak of the epidemic.

In addition to this, the UGC has recently revised the pension for retired teachers and non-teaching staff of university colleges, which are considered to be universities. A circular has been sent to the concerned universities regarding this issue. Students are advised to keep a check on the official website of UGC for any updates.

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