1997(2) ALL MR 603
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT BOMBAY (AURANGABAD BENCH)

N.P. CHAPALGAONKAR AND R.G. DESHPANDE, JJ.

Jacob Antony Vs. The State Of Maharashtra & Ors.

Writ Petition No.55 of 1997

8th January, 1997

Petitioner Counsel: Mrs. MANJUSHA DESHPANDE
Respondent Counsel: Shri. V.D.SAPKAL

Constitution of India, Art.226 - Part-time B.E. Course - Admission to - Relevant Rules not supplied to candidates with application forms - Consequent delay caused in submitting domicile certificate by a candidate - Held, candidate not being at fault, admission could not be refused.

In the instant case the rules which were framed by the State Government on 25-6-1996 were not supplied to the students at the time of the sale of the application form for admission to B.E. Part-time course. Therefore, the students were not in know that if they have passed qualifying examination from any Board outside State of Maharashtra, they should produce the Certificate of Domicile alongwith their application or at the time of interview. It is a matter of common knowledge that one has to spend atleast few days to obtain certificate of domicile and it is not readily available. Thus the candidate could not submit domicile certificate at the time of the interview but filed it later. If this requirement would have been notified to him, he would have certainly produced certificate of domicile alongwith the application at the time of interview. Thus the candidate was entitled to be admitted to B.E. Part-time course. [Para 7,9,10]

State has every right to frame rules for admission to the professional college and they may require a particular certificate to be produced by the candidate. It cannot be said that the requirement of domicile certificate is not a valid requirement. State is well within its right to frame such rules and can compel the students to produce the certificate required. Only thing is that such requirement should be properly notified to the students. Professional courses have been attraction to the meritorious class of students and, therefore, every caution should be taken by the authorities to notify every relevant rule and to bring it to the notice of the students. The better way to do it is to append all the rules to the application form itself unless they are required to be changed for some unforeseen circumstance. [Para 8]

JUDGMENT

CHAPALGAONKER,J. :- Rule, made returnable forthwith.

2. Heard Mrs.Manjusha Deshpande for the petitioner and Shri V.D.Sapkal,Asstt. Government Pleader for Respondents Nos. 1 to3.

3. Petitioner had applied for admission to the part-time B.E.Course conducted in the Government College of Engineering at Aurangabad. A Notification inviting applications was published in the newspapers dated 1-12-1996. The said Notification invited applications from Indian nationals and locally employed candidates. The qualifications prescribed were Diploma examination of the Board of Technical Examination, Maharashtra State or equivalent thereof with minimum 50 per cent of marks and in case of backward classes from Maharashtra 45 per cent of marks. The second qualification was in respect of the experience which need not be considered so far as the present petition is concerned.

4. The Respondent - State Government has come out with a case that the admission to the petitioner could not be given since he did not produce certificate of domicile as is required under the rules. The petitioner contends that he could not produce domicile certificate at the time of the interview since he was not aware of this requirement. He did obtain domicile certificate dated 18/12/1996 which was received by him on 21-12-1996 but by that time, process for admission was completed. Petitioner has, therefore, approached this Court invoking jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India.

5. Shri V.D.Sapkal, learned Counsel for the State, submitted that the requirement as per the rules will have to be complied on or before the last date of the admission i.e. at the time when the petitioner was interviewed by the authority and nothing can be supplemented later on which could disturb whole admission process. We are perfectly in agreement with the submission and we do not wish to condone lapse of non-furnishing required document beyond the last date of admission. Therefore, if the rules require that a certificate should be produced by a candidate, it must be produced before the last date of admission. But facts in this case are little different. The advertisement, which is annexed at Exhibit A of the compilation of this writ petition, did not make any mention about the requirement of the domicile certificate.

6. Shri Sapkal further submitted that on 7-12-1996 a notice was published on the Notice Board of the college by the Principal of the Government Engineering College, Aurangabad notifying the basis of the selection and the procedure for admission for part time degree course in Engineering and Technology. According to Shri Sapkal, this notice intimated to the students that the admission shall be according to the Government Resolutions and those Government Resolutions were available in the Principal's office. Firstly, this notice does not specifically say that the relevant Government notifications are available for inspection in the Principal's office. Secondly, the notice appears to be concerning only laying down a procedure for the distribution of maximum 100 marks while evaluating the student's claim. By no stretch of imagination a student can imagine by this notice that the domicile certificate is to be produced at the time of admission.

7. It is an admitted fact that the rules which were framed by the State Government on 25-6-1996 were not supplied to the students at the time of the sale of the application form. Therefore, the students were not in know that if they have passed qualifying examination from any Board outside State of Maharashtra, they should produce the Certificate of Domicile alongwith their application or at the time of interview. It is a matter of common knowledge that one has to spend atleast few days to obtain certificate of domicile and it is not readily available. If this requirement would have been notified to the petitioner, he would have certainly produced certificate of domicile alongwith the application at the time of interview. The fact that he is domicile of State of Maharashtra is now established by the certificate annexed to the petition.

8. State has every right to frame rules for admission to the professional college and they may require a particular certificate to be produced by the candidate. We do not wish to lay down that the requirement of domicile certificate is not a valid requirement. State is well within its right to frame such rules and can compel the students to produce the certificate required. Only thing is that such requirement should be properly notified to the students. Professional courses have been attraction to the meritorious class of students and, therefore, every caution should be taken by the authorities to notify every relevant rule and to bring it to the notice of the students. The better way to do it is to append all the rules to the application form itself unless they are required to be changed for some unforeseen circumstance. It is an admitted fact that the petitioner would have got admission but for the domicile certificate.

9. We, therefore, feel that the petitioner will have to be admitted to the part-time B.E. course conducted in the Government Engineering College at Aurangabad. We also clarify that we are admitting the student considering that he is otherwise qualified and the courses have not yet commenced.

10. Before we pass the final orders, we once again make it clear that this judgment should not be interpreted to mean that the certificate which is required under the rules to be produced at the time of the interview can be produced at some later time. This Court has not waived any such requirement. We hope that hereafter the authorities will append all these rules to the application form itself. We accordingly make the rule absolute and direct that the petitioner be admitted to part-time B.E. course conducted in the Government College of Engineering at Aurangabad which is yet to commence even by creating additional seat, if so required. No costs.

Rule made absolute.