Thiruvananthapuram: After getting assurance from the Kerala government that all COVID-19 protocols will be followed at examination centres, the Supreme Court on Friday allowed it to hold class 11 exams in pen and paper (offline) mode. “We are convinced by the explanation offered by the state and trust authorities will take all precautions and necessary steps so that no untoward situation is faced by students who are of tender age and appearing for the proposed examination. Dismissed,” a bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar and CT Ravikumar said.Also Read - Ghar Wali Diwali: Amrapali Homebuyers to Get Possession of Their Flats on Nov 4 | Read Details

Dismissing a plea challenging the state government’s decision to hold the physical exam for Class 11, the apex court said it had intervened on the earlier occasion as there was a possibility of third wave of corona by September. “Third wave is not in offing immediately,” the bench said, citing media reports. Also Read - '100 Protesters in Rally And Only 23 Eyewitnesses?' SC Raps UP Govt Over Farmers' Killing in Lakhimpur

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The Kerala government in an affidavit had told the top court that online examinations will be a disadvantage for students with no access to laptops and mobile phones. “The conduct of examination through online mode will prejudice a large number of students who have no access to laptops, desktops or even mobile phones. The students belonging to the lower strata of society are depending on mobile phones or tablets for attending online classes.

“In many areas, internet connection or mobile data are not available. These students will never be able to write online examinations,” the state government had told the court.

Earlier this month, the apex court had stayed for a week Kerala government’s decision to conduct offline exams for Class XI commencing from September 6 amid the rising cases of COVID saying “there is an alarming situation in the state”.

(With agency inputs)