30,000 admissions done, can’t revise JEE merit list after scrapping bonus marks, IIT tells SC
The joint admission board of IIT has told the Supreme Court that it is not possible to revise the merit list of Joint Entrance Examination (Advanced) by scrapping bonus marks awarded to all students for wrong questions, saying that around 30 thousand candidates had already been allotted seats in different engineering colleges across the country.
Responding to a notice issued by the Supreme Court, IIT justified its decision to award bonus marks to all students to ensure that no candidate was prejudiced on account of printing inconsistencies. It said the decision on bonus marks was taken by a committee of experts after exploring all other options and there was no infirmity in the decision. It urged the court not to entertain plea of some students for scrapping of bonus marks and issuance of fresh merit list.
“It is respectfully submitted that the relief is entirely against equity since the process of seat allocation is going on and 29425 candidates have already accepted the allotted seats and reported for physical verification of documents … It is submitted that in case the ongoing counselling and admission process is disturbed, the admission procedure of more than 36,000 students in 97 institutes under the joint seat allocation programme for IITs, NIITs, IIITs and GFTIs (Government-Funded Technical Institutions) would be scrapped,” it said in an affidavit filed in SC.
While hearing a plea of students, the apex court had on June 30 sought response from IIT on why 18 bonus marks given to all students should not be scrapped. The petitioners, who cracked the exam, alleged that their ranking in merit list was adversely affected by bonus marks given to all and they would not be able to get admission in colleges of their choice.
SC puts admissions to IITs and NITs on hold over bonus marks
A PETITION FILED BY 2 STUDENTS SAID BONUS MARKS SHOULD NOT BE AWARDED TO ALL, BUT ONLY TO THOSE WHO ATTEMPTED ‘INCORRECT QUESTION’ IN PAPER
Tension has gripped all those candidates who had appeared for the JEE (Advanced) this year as the admission counselling has been paused due to SC’s stay. The next hearing will be held on Monday.
The Supreme Court on Friday put on hold admissions to most of the country’s engineering colleges, including the prestigious Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), over awarding of bonus marks in the joint entrance examination (JEE).
The order, which will affect 33,000-odd students, came on a petition filed by two candidates who sought the court’s direction to IIT-Madras to revise the list of successful students without giving them bonus marks.
According to them, bonus marks should not have been awarded to all the candidates but only to those who attempted the “incorrect question” in the paper.
“If granting bonus marks is a problem, it has to be solved by us at the earliest,” a bench headed by justice Dipak Misra said as it fixed July 10 to hear the matter again.
The top court hinted it would go by its 2005 verdict, which ruled bonus marks for a wrong question can be given to only those who answer it.
The order to freeze the counseling that is underway was made despite the IIT informing the SC that it was not possible to re-evaluate answersheets of the estimated 2.5 lakh students who took the exams.
The institution justified the granting of bonus marks and called it the most practical solution to any dispute.
But the bench remained unconvinced. It also restrained high courts from entertaining any fresh case relating to counselling and admissions to the IITs from Friday.
The institution was asked to place details of petitions pending before the high courts challenging the IIT-Joint Entrance Examination 2017 rank list.
Meanwhile, IIT Kanpur stopped the third round of counselling that was scheduled on Saturday after the Supreme Court order.
Shalabh, chairman of the JEE commitee in Kanpur, said a notice has been issued informing the students.
Two rounds of counselling have already taken place and some students have deposited fee with their respective institutions.
“We will act as per the directives of, the Supreme Court,” he said.
The petitioners who cleared the exam claimed their ranking in merit list was hit by bonus marks given to all and they would not get admission in colleges of their choice. It violated their right and said a fresh list should be issued after rectifying the scores of JEE (Advanced).
No writ petition to be entertained
A bench of Justices Dipak Misra and A M Khanwilkar also restrained the High Court from entertaining any writ petition relating to counselling and admissions to the IITs from Friday onwards. The stay applies to all institutes that used the IIT-JEE (Advanced) 2017 for admissions.
How it all started
A petition, filed by IIT aspirant Aishwarya Agarwal, had sought the court’s direction to declare that the action of awarding ‘bonus marks’ to the candidates who had appeared in the JEE (Advanced) 2017 examination was wrong and violated her right, as well as that of other students.
Grace marks were given as the answer key to seven of the questions went missing. As an alternative, the petitioner said the institution should conduct fresh examination and prepare a fresh merit list or grant all students another opportunity to appear in the examination to be conducted next year.