Students breathe sigh of relief at CIC order; universities await UGC directives
Soon, students in Mumbai may not have to pay exorbitant fee amounts for seeking photocopies of their answer-sheets. The change follows the Information Panel's ceiling for the amount charged for seeking copies of answer-sheets. It will now be just Rs 2 per page.
Now, exam answer-sheet copies at Rs 2 per page
The Central Information Commission (CIC) gave this order on January 16 while hearing a case of a student named Abne Ingty against Delhi University where this charge is above Rs 700 per answer-sheet.
At Mumbai University, charges can be as much as R100 per answer-sheet; at a private university such as Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), these charges are as much as Rs 500 per answer-sheet, irrespective of its size in terms of number of pages.
The order from the CIC states, 'Rules prescribing a student to pay exorbitant fees for seeking copy of answer sheets are in violation of Right to Information Law and must be changed to allow a student to exercise his Right to Information.' The order also directs the University Grants Commission (UGC) to issue required directives for prompt implementation of the order.
Ravi Bhardwaj, legal expert in the education sector, said, “To make it difficult for a student to exercise his RTI is an infringement of the liberty of students to get a photocopy of their answer scripts and their right to access the information. 'Right to Access the Information' is inherent in Right to Information.”
PRO, Leeladhar Bansod, told SUNDAY mid-day, “We have read the order. But, required directives have to come from the UGC, which will be discussed at MU's management council before finalisation.” At NMIMS too, authorities await UGC directives.