Supreme Court has equated the practice of granting admission in absence of affiliation or in anticipation of affiliation, as a disease and has also cautioned that such disease has potential to become a disaster.
The Court was hearing an Appeal filed by a College against concurring Judgement of Allahabad High Court, refusing to consider the case of College for extension of earlier approval or admitting students, as the College, within the timelines prescribed by the Supreme Court, could not secure affiliation.
The College was earlier granted provisional affiliation for a period of 3 years, later it applied for constituting an Inspection Panel for granting permanent affiliation to the University. An Inspection Panel was constituted to submit status report and report was also submitted. However, as per time schedule prescribed by the State Government, the Inspection Report was not received within the prescribed date. In the absence of the required Inspection Report, the University did not grant permanent affiliation to the appellant. No appeal was preferred before the State Government.
The College being aggrieved preferred a Writ Petition before Allahabad High Court, which declined to interfere. Being dissatisfied with the order passed by the learned Single Judge, the College preferred Special Appeal before the Division Bench.
It was urged before the Division Bench that application for grant of permanent affiliation in respect of subjects was made well within time and the Committee had recommended extension of temporary affiliation but there had been failure on the part of the University, which had caused grave prejudice to the college.
The Division Bench noted that the State Government has formulated a time-frame for consideration of applications for affiliation and a person aggrieved by the decision taken by the University was entitled to prefer an appeal against the same to State Government. In the facts of the case the affiliation was neither granted by the time fixed nor was any appeal preferred before the State Government Being of this view, it dismissed the intra-court appeal. Hence, the College approached the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court refused to consider the prayer of the Appellant College stating that in light of time schedule, benefit cannot be extended, as the College has not maintained the time schedule fixed by the State Government pursuant to judgments of Supreme Court.
However, Supreme Court was faced with another difficulty to deal with the career of the students, who were already admitted in the College, in absence of affiliation. The Supreme came down heavily on such practice and observed that, “This kind of conduct has become a disease, and when the conduct becomes a disaster, it is a disastrous phenomenon.”
While dismissing the Appeal, the Supreme Court observed that, “the University shall consider the application for affiliation, if not considered already, within a span of four weeks and, if the affiliation is granted, the students who had been granted admission shall be treated as students as admitted for the academic session which would be covered by the affiliation to be granted in future. We have so directed so that the appellant College would not be in a position to admit any other student after affiliation is granted.”
Fixing timelines for affiliation and admission process was certainly a welcome change at the instance of Supreme Court. But in some cases, the authorities acting in adhoc and arbitrary manner deny the right to an Institution, with an argument that, “If you think I am wrong, go to Court”. The Institute then goes to Court, hires lawyer, attends hearing in anticipation of justice.
As an Institute is made to suffer even in genuine cases, shouldn’t the concerned office or authority be also held accountable for acting in adhoc and careless manner. There has to be balancing of roles. Only the Institution cannot keep suffering.
Ravi Bhardwaj | firstname.lastname@example.org