SC to examine if universities can be sued under consumer law

SC to examine if universities can be sued under consumer law
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The Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal, challenging a verdict of National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC), which raised the question, whether an educational institution or university can be sued for deficiency in services under the consumer protection law.

A bench of Justices D.Y. Chandrachud, Indu Malhotra and Indira Banerjee, admitting the appeal, said: "Since there are divergent views of this court bearing on the subject as to whether an educational institution or University would be subject to the provisions of the Consumer Protection Act 1986, the appeal would require admission." The order was passed by the top court on October 15.

The students have alleged that the university has indulged into unfair trade practice and there was deficiency of service, as it induced them to take admission in a course on an assurance that requisite approvals from the authorities have been obtained. In 2005-2006, the students were admitted in an offshore programme of two-year study in Thailand and two-and-a half year study in the university in India. They were assured that the MBBS final degree is recognised by the Indian Government and Medical Council of India. However, after completion of studies in Thailand, the students were told to continue their course there. The students' in their plea said they were informed that a Foreign Medical Degree will be conferred on them and they would have to appear for screening test in India.

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