The Supreme Court on Friday has asked for an explanation from the Central government and the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) on why no extra attempt can be given to civil services aspirants affected by COVID-19 when such relaxation has been extended earlier.
The move came after the Centre told Supreme Court on Monday that an extra chance will not be offered to UPSC's aspirants who could not appear in their previous attempt last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic situation.
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A bench headed by Justice Justice AM Khanwilkar was informed the same on Monday by ASG SV Raju.
Later as per ANI, the Apex Court on Thursday asked the Centre to clarify at what level the decision was taken by the government regarding not giving extra chance to civil service aspirants affected by COVID-19.
Justice Khanwilkar's Bench expressed displeasure that the affidavit has no information as to at what level the decision was taken and was also not pleased that the affidavit was signed by an Under-Secretary.
Earlier, the bench, which also comprised Justices B R Gavai and Krishna Murai, had asked the law officer to supply the copy of the affidavit to the counsel of civil services aspirant Rachna who had moved the court with the plea for grant of extra chance to crack the test.
Moreover, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta had told the bench earlier that the government was considering the issue of granting one more opportunity to those civil services aspirants who could not appear in their last attempt to crack the UPSC exam.
The top court on September 30, last year, had refused to postpone the UPSC civil services preliminary exam, which was held on October 4, because of the COVID-19 pandemic and floods in several parts of the country.
However, it had directed the Central Government and the Union Public Service Commission to consider granting an extra chance to candidates who otherwise have their last attempt in 2020, with corresponding extension of the upper age-limit.
The bench was then told that a formal decision can be taken by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) only.
(With inputs from agencies)
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