The Karnataka High Court has recently granted permission to eight students, who are holding Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) or Person of Indian origin (PIO) cards to appear for JEE (Main) and Kishore Vigyanik Protsahan Yojna (KVPY) exams.
The JEE (Main) examination is conducted by CBSE while the Kishore Vigyanik Protsahan Yojna (KVPY) will be conducted by the India Institute of Science (IISc) and KEA.
Issuing an order on this, Justice Ravi Malimath said, " The petitioners will be taking admission under general category quota in IITs while specifying the permission granted is subject to the result of their petition. The Court has also ordered notice to the ministry of overseas Indians, HRD ministry, CBSE, India Institute of Science and KEA."
The petitioners, Sneha Sredhra and seven others, challenged the November 11, 2014 bulletin pertaining to JEE (Main)-2015 published by CBSE, which specified that OCI cardholders are not eligible to take admission to NITs, IITs and CFTIs through JEE-Main channel.
Besides, they had also challenged the July 12, 2015 notice, issued by IISc denying OCI cardholders to take the KVPY examination.
Pointing out the reason the Petitioners said they are all OCI cardholders and have been studying in India for many years (some more than 12 years). Based on the representation held out by the government of India that the OCI cardholders would be entitled to parity with NRIs with respect to economic, financial and educational fields.
"The petitioners' parents have come down and have been working to India. The petitioners have also been studying here on that basis for a number of years. However, CBSE, IISC and KEA have now sought to deny this right conferred upon petitioners and other OCI cardholders as per the statutory notification issued under Sub-Section (1) of Section 79 of the Citizenship Act, 1955," the petitioners stated.
"In exercise of the powers conferred under sub-section 1 of section 7B of the Citizenship Act, 1955, the ministry of home affairs issued a notification on April 11, 2005, stating that OCIs shall be entitled to parity with NRIs with respect to all facilities available to them in economic, financial and educational fields."
"In continuation, the ministry of overseas affairs issued another notification on January 5, 2009, declaring that OCI cardholders are entitled to appear for all-India pre-medical tests or such other tests to make them eligible for admission in pursuant to the provisions contained in the relevant act,'' the petitioners added.
They even claimed as unjustifiable the CBSE's action to exclude them from JEE Main for admission to NITs, IIITs, and other CFTIs after having permitted them to study the CBSE syllabus during schooling. The KVPY examination is held to select students for granting fellowships in basic sciences.
The last date for filing applications for the KVPY examination is August 30, 2015.