Delhi High Court Forms Committee to Issue Digital Degree Certificate to Students

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The order has come in a plea moved by medical graduates, who are awaiting degree certificates, since 2018. These graduates need their degree certificates by August 15 to get registered on the ECFMG platform. They want to appear for the USMLE examination for postgraduate studies in the US.

Facts of the Case

Some doctors have filed the present petition. They graduated from three different colleges in Delhi. These doctors have been struggling to get their MBBS degree certificates since 2018. After all failed attempts with Delhi University, Petitioners approached the Delhi High Court.

In the previous hearing, the court had directed the Delhi University to come up with a mechanism to provide digital degree certificates to students having digital signatures.

Submissions before Court

The Court received information that a Committee is looking after the security of sensitive data of academic awards, manpower need, University revenue, etc.

Moreover, DU submits that they came up with a system, for which the students need to upload a scanned copy of their documents along with a non-refundable fee of ₹500. It also requires submission of hard copies of the application along with the signatures etc.

The protocol also states that the certificates would be issued in person to the candidate, after a period of 7-15 working days from the date of submission of the application.

There is also some drawback found with this submission. The name of the portal isn’t specified. Students should collect degree certificates only in person. The electronic copy of a sample degree (to be issued) is also not yet ready.

Court’s Observation

The court observed that the protocol lacks proper guidelines for issuance of degree certificates digitally. The court further noted that the procedure put forward by DU for obtaining degree certificates is too complicated. It makes it difficult for students to get their degrees.

The court criticized DU for its lack of necessary arrangements. Subsequently, the court formed a committee to complete the process of issuing digital degree certificates to students.

The committee will consist of the following members:

  1. Senior officials from the Delhi High Court’s IT Team.
  2. A member from National e-Governance Division (NeGD) of the Ministry of Electronics & IT.
  3. Joint Director of DU’s Computer Centre, and two members from Digilocker.

Court’s Decision

The Single Bench of Justice Prathiba M Singh directed the committee to set the following:

  1. The online link on the DU portal where the students can put in applications for issuance of their digital degree certificates.
  2. The timeline after receipt of the said email, for verification and issuance of the degree certificate with the digital signature.
  3. Template for the degree certificate to be issued by email.
  4. Official to be responsible for affixing the digital signature and issuance of the same.
  5. A sample degree certificate in favour of one of the Petitioners, duly signed with the digital signature, shall also be generated.
  6. Timelines for transmission of data periodically to Digilocker so that students can easily access their certificates, transcripts, mark sheets, awards, etc.

The court asked for a status report in this case by today.


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