Calcutta High Court refuses to change date of TET

The Calcutta High Court on Tuesday refused to grant a prayer by BJP MP Dilip Ghosh and another person for change of date of a Teachers’ Eligibility Test (TET) in West Bengal since it coincides with the December 24 Bhagavad Gita chant programme, scheduled to be attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Submitting that the programme, ‘Ek Lakh Gita Path’ at the Brigade Parade Ground in the heart of the city, will be attended by the prime minister and will lead to congregation of a large number of people, counsels for Ghosh and an examinee prayed that the date for the examination be changed.

The BJP has said that several religious groups have come together to organise the massive event and will be an apolitical programme.

Holding that the directions sought for cannot be granted, the court observed that the authorities of the state government and the Kolkata Police will ensure that the examinees are not disrupted in any manner from reaching the five centres.

A division bench presided by Chief Justice T S Sivagnanam said that it is for the West Bengal Board of Primary Education, academicians and administrative authorities to take into consideration all factors before fixing a date for the examination.

The bench, also comprising Justice Hiranmay Bhattacharyya, directed the Transport department of the state to arrange adequate transport facilities to the examinees upon production of their admit cards.

Two PILs were moved with the prayer, one by Ghosh and another by an examinee.

Submitting that the TET examination was earlier scheduled on December 10, one petitioner’s counsel submitted that it was suddenly postponed to December 24, when the Bhagavad Gita path programme is scheduled.

Praying for a change of date of the examination, he submitted that traffic disruptions may occur as a large number of people are likely to attend the Gita chanting programme, thus affecting the convenience of the examinees.

The counsel representing the West Bengal Board of Primary Education, which is conducting the TET, submitted on a query by the Chief Justice that there will be 773 examination centres across West Bengal, but only five in Kolkata.

It was also submitted that the five centres are situated away from the Maidan, where the Gita path programme is to be held.

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