2002(4) ALL MR 98


Devidas S/O Dinkar Khedkar Vs. The State Of Maharashtra & Ors.

Writ Petition No.4623 of 2001

15th March, 2002

Petitioner Counsel: Mrs. LATA BADE
Respondent Counsel: Shri. U. K. PATIL, Shri. R. B. RAGHUWANSHI, Shri. R. S. SHINDE

Education - Admission to M. Tech. (Agriculture Engineering) for year 2001-2002 - Reservation - Contention that Petitioner who was from N.T. (D) category was entitled to admission - Out of 5 seats 2 were open of which one was reserved for DP/PD/FF category whereas remaining two were reserved for SC and ST category - Whenever percentage exceeded 0.50 one seat had been reserved for a category - University had taken conscious decision of reserving seat for DP/PD/PF and N.T. (D) category in alternate years and accordingly no seat was reserved for N.T.(D) category for year 2001-2002 - Decision of University not unlawful - Contention unsustainable.Constitution of India, Arts.15, 16. (Para 8) AIR 1993 SC 477 Rel. on.

Cases Cited:
Swati Gupta Vs. State of U.P., 1995 (2) SCC 560 [Para 9]
Indra Sawhney Vs. Union of India, AIR 1993 SC 477 [Para 9]


C. K. THAKKER, C.J. :- This petition is filed by the Petitioner for appropriate directions to the respondents to consider his case for admission to M.Tech (Agriculture Engineering) for the academic year 2001-2002 from N.T.(D) category and to grant him admission.

2. The case of the petitioner was that he passed B.Tech (Agriculture Engineering) from the Mahatma Phule Krishi Vidyapeeth. He applied for admission to M.Tech course for the academic year 2001-2002. Since he was not granted admission and the admission was given to respondent No.4 by shifting it to the category of Project-affected persons/Freedom Fighters/Children of Defence Personnel and Exservicemen, the petitioner was constrained to approach this Court.

3. Initially, the notice was issued and ad-interim relief to the extent of keeping one seat vacant was also granted. Thereafter, the petition was admitted.

4. The respondents appeared. An affidavit in reply is filed on behalf of the University.

5. We have heard the learned Counsel for both the parties.

6. The learned Counsel for the petitioner submitted that the distribution of reservation which has been made by the University is contrary to law. According to the learned Counsel for the petitioner, each year one seat is reserved for N.T. (D) category and since this has not been done for the year 2001-2002 the action is illegal. It was also submitted that reading the prospectus of 1998-99 it is clear that for the year 2001-2002 one seat in the University quota has been earmarked and reserved for D.T.N.T. and since the petitioner has not been granted admission the action is illegal. It was also submitted that considering the reservation of seats as reflected in the prospectus for the year 2001-2002 and particularly clause (5) it is clear that for N.T. category one seat has to be reserved and since said action has not been taken, the petitioner has suffered. On all these grounds, it has been submitted that an appropriate direction may be issued to the authorities to grant admission to the petitioner.

7. In the affidavit in reply filed by the University it was stated that initially the University decided to divide seats in two quotas i.e. quota of State of Maharashtra as well as University. Considering the reservation chart it was stated that a conscience decision with the approval of the respondent no.2 and the Dean of the faculty of Agriculture was taken on 23.10.2001 and it was finalised that out of five seats, which were allotted to the University quota, two seats were allotted for the reserved categories and three seats were allotted to the open category. Out of two reserved seats, one seat was reserved for Scheduled Tribe category and another was allotted to the OBC Category. In these circumstances, no seat could be reserved for DT/NT category. It was also stated that out of three seats for general category one seat was allotted to PD/DP/FF, whereas, two seats were allotted to open category. It was also stated that the admission given to respondent no.4 under DP category is a candidate of OBC category and she was given admission in open category. It was, therefore, stated that for the year 2002-2003, one seat has been allotted to DTNT category. It was thus stated that the University has not committed any illegality and the petitioner is not entitled to any relief.

8. In our opinion, it cannot be said that by not granting admission to the petitioner any illegality can be said to have been committed by the University. Looking to the reservation of seats in para 5 of the prospectus, it is clear that whenever per centage exceeded 0.50 one seat has been earmarked for a category. So far as the reservation chart at Nos.3 to 6 is concerned, it did not exceed 0.50. In these circumstances and taking into account the fact of other reservation the University had taken a decision that it will be given in alternative year. Similarly, the fact regarding other reservation of categories at Nos.9, 10, 11 and 12 has been taken into account and in the Note it was specifically mentioned that Sr. No.9 to 12 are 'inclusive of merit in Open and Reserved Category.' If in the light of these facts, the University has taken the decision as stated in para 5 of the affidavit in reply of the University, it cannot be said that the said action is unlawful or otherwise objectionable.

9. Our attention is no doubt invited to the decision in Swati Gupta versus State of U.P. (1995(2) SCC 560). The said decision is not applicable to the facts of the case. In the instant case, the University has taken into account the reservation and as stated in the affidavit in reply for the academic year 2001-2002 there is no reservation provided for NT (D) category and as such reservation would come in the next year 2002-2003. In the year 2001-2002, it was given to DP/PD/FF. It may also be observed that if the contention of the petitioner is upheld that out of five seats of University quota, three seats would be reserved for Scheduled Tribe, OBC and NT (D) categories, it would be violative of the law laid down by the Supreme Court in Indra Sawhney Versus Union of India and others (AIR 1993 SC 477).

10. For the foregoing reasons, we do not see any substance in any of the contentions raised by the learned Counsel for the petitioner. The action of the University is, therefore, legal, proper and in accordance with law. The petition deserves to be dismissed.

11. The writ petition is dismissed. Rule is discharged. Interim relief stands vacated. No order as to costs.

Petition dismissed.