HC RAPS JAMMU-BASED DENTAL COLLEGE FOR ILLEGAL ADMISSIONS

Directs Institute To Pay Rs 14 Lakh Fine, Surrender 28 Seats From Management Quota

NISSAR BHAT

Srinagar, Nov 16: What could send jitters down the spine of academic institutes making admissions in violation of rules, the J&K High Court Friday directed a Jammu-based dental college to deposit Rs 14 lakh with the J&K Legal Service Authority for “violating the norms of Dental Council of India” while making admissions.
Holding the institute guilty of not conducting the entrance test for admission to BDS course and instead admitting the students on the basis of merit in qualifying examination, the Court directed the institute to surrender 14 seats from its Management Quota each in 2013 and 2014 to the Board of Professional Entrance Examination so that the admissions against such seats are made from the meritorious students who appear in the Common Entrance Test.
Holding that the petitioner—Institute of Dental Sciences Sehora—had “admitted students for BDS courses [of] session 2006 in utter disregard of rules,” the court directed the beneficiaries of the admission (respondents 5-92 in the petition), to deposit Rs 10,000 each with the Registrar Judicial, High Court, Jammu. “The amount so deposited,” according to the court, “shall be given in equal proportion to three institutes in Jammu who will use it for improving facilities for visually-impaired students enrolled in such institutions, while Rs. 14 lakh would be spent on organizing legal literacy programmes for schedule caste, schedule tribe and other under-privileged sections of the society in J&K.”
A single bench of Justice Hasnain Massodi passed the directions on a petition preferred by the institute against University of Jammu seeking a direction to the varsity to register its students admitted in 2006 without holding the written test. The judgment was announced today at Jammu.
The detailed judgment running over 35 pages has extensively quoted law on the subject. The judgment while supporting the view that admission of 88 out of 100 candidates made by the petitioner institute in violation of the Dental Council of India regulations is illegal and liable to be set aside, raises some pertinent questions to hold a different view in the present case:
“The act of legitimizing admissions made in violation of rule/statute has been deprecated in number of cases by the Supreme Court and superior courts of the country (but)…the question that calls for an answer is as to whether the candidates admitted six years back after having completed their 5-year BDS courses and internship should be de-seated and their admissions cancelled?”
It reads: “In the present case all the stakeholders involved in grant of permission to the petitioner Institute to make admissions…with only exception of the students enrolled, were equally responsible for flouting the Dental Council of India Regulations.”
“In the circumstances,” the court has directed the responded university “to grant registration to the students – respondents 5 to 92 in the petition, of course subject to fulfillment of conditions namely deposit of the money, surrender of the seats, etc, by the institute.”
It holds: “The students, who responded to the advertisement notice though not completely innocent, are least responsible for late permission granted by the Central Government and irregularity in the admission process committed by the petitioner institute. This court is under a constitutional obligation to secure justice to the justice seekers that come before it and cannot lose sight of the fact that the students enrolled were by and large innocent without any significant role in the irregularity made.”
“It would be unjust and unfair to cancel their admission after they have been on the rolls of the petitioner Institute for six long years and are said to have completed their BDS courses including internship.”

BRIEF HISTORY
Government of India on recommendation of Dental Council of India had issued a Letter of Intent on September 22, 2006 to Trikuta Charitable Trust, Jammu for establishment of new Dental College under name and style of “Institute of Dental Sciences” at Sehora, Jammu, with an annual intake capacity of hundred students in Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) course subject to the conditions laid down therein.
After the Trust conveyed its acceptance of the terms and conditions, the GoI vide letter dated Sep 28, 2006 conveyed formal permission to the Trust to establish a new Dental College.
The permission was to be valid only for one year, restricted to one batch of hundred students for the session 2006-2007.  The process of admission to BDS was to be completed by Sep 30, 2006, which was later extended to Oct 15, 2006.
The petitioner institute however did not hold the written test and admitted the students on the basis of merit in qualifying examination. It had also exceeded its quota and utilized the quota of BOPEE while granting the admissions.
Later the Jammu University refused to register the 88 (eighty eight) candidates “admitted by the petitioner-Institute on its own, on the ground that the students were admitted without conducting any Entrance Examination and no permission was sought from the University of Jammu or from the Board of Professional Entrance Examination before making the admissions.”

STRICTURES AGAINST GOI/INSTITUTE
The court also passed strictures against the Government of India. “In the first place the Centre Government ought not to have granted permission to the Trust on 28th September 2006 to establish the Dental Institute with intake capacity of 100 students in the academic season of 2006-2007 and asked the institute to complete the admissions by 30th September 2006. The Centre Government ought to have realized that the deadline for completing admission process was 30th September in a calendar year and that it would be impossible for the petitioner institute to adhere to it.”
“The authorities at the helm of affairs in the concerned ministry of Central Government owe an explanation for delay and also for according permission only two days before deadline for admission was to end,” it said.
“The petitioner Institute is not in any manner least guilty of the breach committed by it. It ought to have deferred the admissions to the next academic year or made good use of the extension granted by Central Government vide its communication dated 10th October, 2006, in making admissions up to 15th October 2006,” it said.
“The petitioner Institute as already observed had time, though it was to proceed on rollercoaster speed, to make admissions in accordance with Dental Council of India Regulations.”

Lastupdate on : Fri, 16 Nov 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 16 Nov 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 17 Nov 2012 00:00:00 IST




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