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Consider issuing subsidized tickets to PWD students travelling for DU's second round of exams: Delhi HC tells Railways

Delhi University said that the second round of examinations will be conducted through online as well as physical modes.

Aditi Singh

The Delhi High Court today asked the Indian Railways to consider the feasibility of issuing confirmed tickets at subsidized rates to Persons with Disabilities (PWD) students who wish to travel to the national capital for the second round of Delhi University's open book examinations (Prateek Sharma v. UOI).

A Division Bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Subramonium Prasad directed the Union Ministries of Human Resource Development and Social Justice and Empowerment to approach the Railway Ministry and request it to arrange travel for those PWD students from distant states.

The order was passed by the Court while it was dealing with petitions concerning Delhi University's preparedness to deal with the open book examination.

Delhi University today informed the Court that it has decided to conduct the second round of examinations for all the left out students, whether registered or otherwise, through a blended mode.

Senior Advocate Sachin Dutta stated that the students shall have the option of physically appearing in the exams or writing it online.

"This time the portal will not be there. Submission is through e-mail", he added.

During the course of the submissions, Senior Advocate SK Rungta, who appears for the National Federation of the Blind, informed the Court that some of the visually impaired students would come to Delhi to sit for the examination due to better availability of scribes.

Invoking the provisions of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, Rungta urged the Court to direct the Central government to bear the cost of transportation for those students who come from remote areas in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh etc.

"I will take care of food and accommodation", he offered.

Observing that adequate arrangements ought to be made for PWD students who want to come to Delhi for the second round of examinations, the Court asked the Standing Counsel for the Centre,

"Is there anything that the Ministries can do for PWD students travelling to Delhi?

Opining that the HRD, Social Justice and Railways Ministries must join hands to provide assistance to these students, the Court directed that the issue be considered by them.

The Court also clarified that complaints with respect to the non-supply of reading material can be made by visually impaired students to the Grievance Committee.

The matter will be heard next on September 1.

Read the full account of the hearing here:

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