THE Allahabad High Court has directed Agra University to pay compensation of Rs one lakh to an MBBS student who was failed due to the negligent and improper evaluation of his answer-sheet by an examiner of the university.
Devarsh Nath Gupta, a first-year medical student of SN Medical College, Agra had filed a writ petition against his university in December 2019, after he was marked 6 out of 50 in his Physiology paper and declared fail even though he scored an overall 344 out of 600.
Gupta obtained a copy of his Physiology answer sheet under the Right to Information Act, 2005, where he discovered that he had virtually not been evaluated by the examiner. Of the total of five questions, the first four were descriptive with 10 marks each and the fifth question required the examinees to write short notes on two aspects, each with five marks. However, the answer sheet supplied to the petitioner showed that he was arbitrarily awarded two marks each for three questions out of the total of five, even though no answer was found wrong.
Gupta then filed an application before the university administration for scrutiny and rechecking of his answer sheet. The university turned down his application, contending that there was no provision for revaluation of answer sheets, forcing the petitioner to file a writ petition before the High Court.
“We are faced with a case where examiner/evaluator has virtually failed to evaluate (the) answer sheet and has not even cared to read a large number of sheets of the answer sheet. In a mechanical and casual fashion, he has awarded some marks to a candidate without caring for the future of a student. Such examiner/evaluator is a blot on the pious position an entire community of teachers and has no right to continue to function as a teacher,” a two-judge division bench, comprising of Justices Sudhir Agarwal and Rajendra Kumar said while asking Agra University to pay the petitioner student Rs 100,000 as compensation.
“We also find it appropriate to award a cost of Rs 100,000 to the petitioner, which at the first instance shall be payable by Agra University but it shall have the liberty to recover the amount from the concerned examiner, after holding such enquiry as provided in law,” the court ordered.
Criticising the university for disallowing a revaluation of his answer sheet, the court also directed the authorities to allow the student to appear in further examinations after awarding him the average marks of three examiners “under the order of this court” and correcting his Physiology mark sheet by giving him 20 marks.