NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed a plea that sought another shot at the civil service examination conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) in the wake of coronavirus pandemic.
The verdict came as a setback to over 10,000 aspirants who exhausted their last chance in the 2020 preliminary exam or have got age-barred from appearing in future tests. No extra chance will be given to the aspirants who exhausted their last attempt in October 2020, a bench headed by Justice A M Khanwilkar said.
The court called the petitioner’s reasoning that the pandemic had disrupted studies a lame excuse to get more chances to appear for the highly competitive examination. The top court bench, also compising Justices Indu Malhotra and Ajay Rastogi, said that it is a policy decision of the government and judiciary cannot legislate.
“Many exams have been conducted during Covid and if Supreme Court shows indulgence to a few, it will set a precedent which will have a cascading effect on the examinations in other streams,” the verdict read.
The government had agreed to giving an extra chance at the examination to those whose final attempt was last year, but not the one-time relaxation on the age limit that the petition asked for.
The petitioners wanted an extra chance saying they could not prepare well for last year’s exam due to disruptions in study during the pandemic. They also wanted age-barred candidates to be given another chance.