Mumbai, Aug 18: Blaming Maharashtra’s Education Minister for the delay in the declaration of University of Mumbai exam results, which has hit the admission prospects of hundreds of students in universities abroad, the Shiv Sena’s Youth Wing said on Friday it will seek Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s intervention in the matter.
Yuva Sena President Aditya Thackeray said all deadlines given by the university have lapsed and it had failed to declare results of many crucial examinations so far.
“I have sought a meeting with the Prime Minister and hope to meet him very soon and apprise him of the situation,” Thackeray told media persons on Friday evening.
Holding Education Minister Vinod Tawde “responsible”, for what he said was “undue torture and harassment of lakhs of students and their parents”, the Yuva Sena chief demanded his immediate resignation from the state Cabinet.
“Even though more than 100 days have passed, he is still assuring these (results) will be declared as soon as possible. This is sheer irresponsibility on his part and he must quit the post,” Thackeray said.
He was referring to beleaguered Tawde’s statement earlier on Friday that no fresh deadlines will be set and efforts made to declare all pending results as quickly as possible.
Governor C.V. Rao, who reviewed the progress with Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Tawde and other top officials, was informed that of the total 477 examinations conducted in the first half of 2017 the varsity has yet to declare 123 results, said a Raj Bhavan spokesperson in the evening.
Thackeray reiterated that since the university is virtually “headless” now, Fadnavis should appoint an officer of the Indian Administrative Service or Indian Police Service as Administrator.
He said the move of handing over online verification of answer sheets to a private company was a “scam”, and demanded a thorough probe into who all were behind the firm, how it bagged the contract, and whether their capability for the huge task was ascertained or not.
“Students and parents their parents are complaining about errors/discrepancies in results declared so far. More than 100,000 answer sheets have been lost or misplaced. What does this mean? Besides a moral scam, there seems a financial scam too,” the Yuva Sena leader said.
Referring to the plight of thousands of students whose admissions to various universities in the USA, UK, Canada, Australia have been hit, Thackeray said they have availed loans and paid air ticket fares, but their admission is uncertain.
“What about the students who missed their admissions abroad, post-graduate courses in India and job opportunities this year? Will the government refund them?” he asked.
To a question, he said merely sacking the Vice-Chancellor (Sanjay Deshmukh, currently on ‘leave’) won’t help, since the chaos continues and the minister (Tawde) must also answer for this mess.
At the height of the crises, on August 9, Deshmukh suddenly proceeded on leave and Governor Rao appointed Vice-Chancellor Devanand Shinde of Shivaji University, Kolhapur as the acting VC, and also nominated an acting Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Dhiren Patel to arrest the examination results crises.
Earlier, in an unprecedented step on July 4, Rao had summoned Deshmukh and ordered him to ensure that all results were declared by July 31, which was extended. As of Friday, a whopping 123 examination results are pending declaration.
The Governor had also appointed an independent officer to monitor the results’ progress and report daily and ordered Deshmukh to set up a “war room” at his level to ensure declaration of results on time and submit daily progress report to Raj Bhavan, but the measures failed to produce the desired results.
The state Congress has strongly criticised the chaos in the examination department and demanded the Governor’s resignation, besides sacking of Education Minister Tawde and Higher & Technical Education Minister Ravindra Waikar for the university’s lapses.
The Yuva Sena and National Students Union of India have been carrying out separate agitations on the issue since the past few couple of months.