Bombay HC Questions Mumbai University on Online Exams for 7/11 Train Blast Convict

Bombay HC_LegallySpeaking

On July 11, 2006, seven bombs exploded in the coaches of different local trains in Mumbai, killing 189 people and wounding 824 others. Ansari and other defendants in the bombing case were found guilty by a special court in September 2015.

Facts of the Case

In 2015, Ansari was granted permission by the court to pursue a law degree course. Eight years later, in 2023, he received approval to sit for the first semester exams. The saga continued in May, when Ansari sought permission to physically attend the second-semester law examinations at Siddharth Law College in South Mumbai, scheduled from May 3 to May 15. The court granted his request and directed the Nashik central prison authorities to facilitate his transportation to the college on exam dates.

However, on May 10, Ansari filed an application stating his inability to appear for exams held on May 3 and 9. The prosecution explained that, despite sincere efforts by the prison authorities, logistical challenges prevented Ansari from reaching the college on time. Consequently, the court instructed the prison superintendent to provide an affidavit by June 5, detailing the reasons for the delay. Considering Ansari’s predicament and security concerns, the court deliberated on the possibility of allowing him to take the exams online. Mumbai University, however, clarified that such a provision did not exist.

Court’s Verdict

Mohammed Sajid Marghoob Ansari, the candidate, might have the opportunity to take his exams online due to security concerns, as indicated by a division bench of Justices Makarand Karnik and Kamal Khata on Friday. Despite this, the High Court deliberated on the feasibility of online exams for Ansari, instructing the university to clarify its position on online examination procedures after consulting relevant authorities, including the ATS. Moreover, the court inquired about the possibility of rescheduling the missed exams, considering circumstances beyond Ansari’s control. The case is set for a further hearing on June 10.

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About the Author: Hemansh Tandon