Despite HC order, uncertainty prevails over fate of over 300 AKTU students
NOIDA: After the Allahabad high court directed that the students of Jharkhand State Open School (JSOS) not be rusticated, authorities of the Noida campus of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam University (AKTU) have allowed 37 of 371 students to appear for their examinations that commenced Tuesday.
The issue dates back to 2015, when the Uttar Pradesh State Engineering Examination, with admission committee of AKTU, enlisted Jharkhand State Open School (JSOS) among its list of bona fide institutes and allowed its graduates to take admission in different streams of engineering.
For four years, the alumni had no problems in getting admissions once they qualify the AKTU entrance examinations. In 2019, AKTU declared the admissions of 371 JSOS alumni null and void as it was not a registered board. These students were not allowed to take semester examinations.
Thirty-seven of them filed a writ petition before the Allahabad high court, which passed an order on Friday in favour of students.
The single bench headed by justice Vivek Choudhary, directed the AKTU to permit the students to continue their studies as regular students, remarking, “In the present case also, the students are not at fault. They were also deceived by the JSOS, as the AKTU was deceived. AKTU has also granted them admission and the many of the petitioners have already cleared their first year and are in their second year (sic).”
On Tuesday, when the semester examinations began, the AKTU administration allowed only 37 students to appear, stating that only they have got judgment in their favour.
Officials said only the 37 students who had filed a writ petition before the Allahabad high court were allowed to take their exams.
Third-year BTech student Waseem, who was not among the 37 petitioners, said the AKTU administration has lost its credibility before students.
“Their modus operandi is very discreet. Hours after the names of the 37 students started reflecting on the admission portal, we approached the college authorities to allow us to appear for the examinations on the same grounds. But, they rejected our pleas and threatened us to get ready to face dire consequences,” he said.
He further said the remaining students have contacted the same lawyer to pursue their case before the Allahabad high court. “With the order passed in the writ petition as precedent, we are also hopeful of getting the same verdict,” he said.
Even students who appeared in examinations on Tuesday are apprehensive. Ratnesh, after giving his papers of third year (electronics), said the AKTU has yet not cleared its stance about internal tests, in which the students may not be allowed to appear.
“I am sure that the AKTU will not make it easy for students. But we, too, are committed this time to save our future. If AKTU doesn’t listen to court orders, we will knock on the court doors again,” he said.
BTech (civil) student Dronacharya said with AKTU still having control over internal marks, the ball was very much the management’s court. “They will have to understand that we are mere students with simple economic backgrounds, not demonstrators. Even in the examination hall today, they were staring at us like we were criminals,” he said.
Former AKTU teacher Dr AK Singh, who now runs an organization for eradicating corruption from education, said that the government must conduct a thorough probe of this admission scam.
“It is unpalatable for me that the officials of AKTU admission committee – in connivance with the Uttar Pradesh State Engineering Examination – had declared the JSOS pass-outs eligible for admission in different engineering courses three years ago. After collecting hefty fees from these students, they have now venting their wrath on them,” he said.
When contacted, AKTU spokesman Ashish Mishra said that the campus has allowed appearing in the examinations to only those students, who had got order from the High Court in their favour. “Justice cannot be generalised. We will allow the remaining students, only if they get the same order in their favour,” he said.