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Conduct exams, award degree... Law student files a Petition in Person before the Patna High Court

Priya Singh

Intern, Constitutional Rights Initiative

Alok Abhinav is a final year law student of Bihar Institute of Law, Magadh University, Bihar who has recently filed a Writ Petition before the Hon'ble High Court of Patna with a prayer to conduct examination and issue of degree to the students of the Law in the University. On behalf of Legal Angles Patna, Priya took his interview in which he explains about this issue.

Sir would you please tell our readers a little something about yourself?

I'm pursuing B.A. LL.B from Bihar Institute of Law,Patna affiliated by Magadh University,Bodh Gaya. I'm working on Education (especially Higher Education) related issues in Bihar since 2019.I'm also a PLV for DLSA,Patna Civil Court. I worked as Case Manager for Online Lok Adalat, Rajasthan Legal Services Authority & Bihar Legal Services Authority. I'm an active Volunteer for WCB (Wildlife Control Bureau).

Sir can you please inform our readers, what was your motive or what prompted you to file this petition in the High Court of Patna?

A University is known for academic excellence , achievement in extra curriculars it's faculty but the sad reality of Magadh University is that, it is now being known for delays in exams , Non publication of results and degrees etc. The admission process for 2019-21 session started in February 2020. It took almost a year to complete the admission process and the class started from December 2020. Until June 2021 there is no clarity on when the first semester examination will be conducted. Higher education in Bihar is in shambles. This is in a stark contrast with the state’s glorious past. Bihar’s achievements in higher education in the past led by the universities like Nalanda, Vikramshila and Udantpuri, used to be an envy of the rest of the world. In the past students and scholars from across the world used to scramble to get admission in the universities in Bihar. Today, the students from Bihar scramble to get admission outside. Even more painful is to see the condition of the students who are enrolled in the universities in Bihar.

What exactly are your prayers from the Hon'ble High court?

To remove fraudulent Practice, as the universities hardly follow any academic calendar, often the result date mentioned in the certificates is different from the actual date. For example, the results for 2016-19 under-graduate course of Magadh University was published in December 2019. But the university has mentioned September 2019 as the result published date.

File Photo: Alok Abhinav

Some universities and employers consider the students whose results are awaited. Suppose you got a job and you mentioned your employer that your result is awaited. You are supposed to submit your result as soon as published. Career of several students have been affected due to such practice of the university. It creates gaps in the academic career of the students. Such gaps have huge negative impact on the future career prospects of the students. Many universities simply don’t consider the application from such students who have gaps. Same is the case with most of the big employers. Special attention should be given to improve the quality of learning. The concerns of the students should be learning outcomes and not the academic sessions as has been the case with students of most of the universities for the past several decades.

Sir, according to you what is the actual reason for delays in academic session at Magadh University and other universities in Bihar ?

Most of the universities in Bihar have a history of irregular academic sessions. At Magadh University both under-graduate and post-graduate courses are running two to three years late.

Main reasons :- -accountability of University staff and failure of Academic calendar, Bihar Govt ignorance. Students at Magadh University, Bodh Gaya, Bihar, are still awaiting the date for their First Semester Examination, and there is no clarity when it will be held. This is shocking, but true! You might be thinking, it’s because of Covid-19 pandemic. It might be partly true, but delays in academic sessions have been a regular affair at Magadh University and most of the other universities in Bihar. It has become almost a routine that three-year under-graduate course takes four to six years while two-year Post Graduate (PG) courses take around three to four years, often even more. This has been going on not just for few years, but decades now. Most of the universities don’t follow any fixed academic calendar, be it pandemic or no pandemic. Perhaps, only Patna University seems to follow academic calendar and conduct examinations in time. However, there are exceptions. Inordinate delays and uncertainties are taking a toll on the students’ future. Students have not able to plan their career. Most of the students expressed anguish and looked uncertain about their future. Once they get admission in the universities in Bihar there is no certainty when the course will be completed. Some candidate apply for job as a appearing candidate, expecting that the result will be in their hand by a particular date. Some of them have been successful in getting selected in the competitive exams like BPSC and SSC, but could not join because of not being able to get the university degree in time. Bifurcation of Universities. Burden of students is often cited as the main reason for the delays in academic sessions. With a view to reduce burden and ensure better management the state government has bifurcated several universities. A part of Magadh University has been bifurcated and made a separate university called Patliputra University. Tilka Manjhi University, Bhagalpur, has been bifurcated into two. The new university is named Munger University. Purnea University has been carved out of BN Mandal University, Madhepura.

Thank You for your time!

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