This week, the Delhi High Court approved the application of an 18-year-old mother who had her diploma course candidature canceled by the National Board of Examinations (NBE) due to lack of attendance after giving birth to her daughter. After the woman's ophthalmology course was completed, she was scheduled to take her final exams on August 24, 2021, as stated in Justice Rekha Palli's order. According to the Court, "the petitioner is also permitted to appear in these examinations" even though she was allowed to take additional training to make up for her time off. The Court had asked the woman if she would be willing to undergo additional training to make up for her maternity leave. During her 163-day maternity leave, the woman expressed a willingness to participate in this additional training program. Per the NBA's April 4, 2020 notice, she would also be required to complete 42 additional training days. In response to this notice, the training period for all diploma students whose tenure was set to end between April 1, 2020, and June 30, 2020 (both dates inclusive) was extended by six weeks. To make her train for an additional 42 days, however, she said, would be "totally unwarranted".
The NBE informed the court that it had no objection to recalling its candidate cancellation orders and allowing the petitioner to appear for the upcoming final examinations, subject to her completing the additional 42 days of training. Both parties are in agreement, based on their submissions at the bar, on the petitioner's need to complete 163 extra hours of training to make up for her maternity leave, said the court. The only issue that remained was whether or not the woman should go through an additional 42-day training program. To compensate for her maternity leave, and to appear in DNB final examinations, the petitioner is allowed to immediately begin training at respondent no.2's institute, according to a Friday ruling by the Supreme Court. The court will decide at the next hearing whether the woman must complete an additional 42-day training course. During her pregnancy, the woman is said to have taken a number of medical leaves in addition to maternity leave. "It's a shame," she says. "It's not fair."
As of December 10, 2020, she had completed her training and had been awarded a certificate of training completion. "Unauthorised absence" for over 400 days, according to the NBE, was cited as the reason for her cancellation.
Tags : #DelhiHighCourt #Examination #MaternityLeave