Class 12 students win battle against school, board in apex court

July 16th, 2012 - 9:16 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, July 16 (IANS) Three Class 12 students have won a major battle against their school and the powerful Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CICSE) in the Supreme Court.

After a five-month-long ordeal, the students - Faraz Talha, Eishaan Singh and Shreshtra Mishra of the prestigious St Francis College and their parents won the legal battle earlier this week.

The apex court quashed a special leave petition (SLP) of the Council against the students, whom the school authorities tried best to deny a chance to appear in the board exams earlier this year.

The three students, all budding cricketers playing for the college team, were told two days before beginning of the exams Feb 14, 2012, through a speed post notice, that they could not appear in the exams as they fell short of the 60 percent attendance needed. The parents and the students were aghast as they had regularly been attending classes.

Questioning the decision, they forced the college management to show them the attendance register only to find that they were marked absent when they were playing for their school in cricket tournaments in April, October and November 2011.

“This was simply crazy and we could make nothing out of the school order,” Faraz, the college cricket team captain, told IANS.

His mother and senior journalist Kulsum Talha said the past five months had been simple terrible.

Recalling how she and other affected parents, through court orders, had managed to ensure that their children could give the exams, she faulted the college administration and also the council, which rather than being “accesible and sympathetic” to them, chose to take on them through the legal route.

“It is shocking that while all through the five months the CISCE officials remained out of our reach and did not care for the future and careers of these three kids, they woke up when the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court in its April 13, 2012 order slammed the college for its conduct,” she said.

While the college withdrew from the legal battle thereafter, the Council then filed the petition in the apex court, challenging the high court order slamming the college and validating the view point of the students.

After the apex court’s dismissal of the petition, the students and parents are demanding that action be taken against the college for playing with the lives of the students.

Calling for suspension of Derek Jackson, the class teacher concerned for “purposely marking less attendance”, the parents have also demanded that college principal Father Denis Naresh Lobo be removed for “not making adequate enquiries before pressing the charge of attendance shortage and before spearheading the campaign against students causing mental agony”.

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