In pursuance of the apex court’s suggestion regarding the formation of a redressal committee to examine the grievances of CLAT-2018 candidates on a case to case basis and offer redressal, NUALS, Kochi, having conducted the CLAT this year, conveyed the acquiescence to comply with the same.
The Supreme Court vacation bench of Justices A. M. Khanwilkar and Indu Malhotra, on Friday, directed the Respondent to scrutinise all complaints by May 29 and submit a status report before the court by May 30.
The Committee will be chaired by Mr. Justice M.R. Hariharan Nair who will examine every singular representation/complaint received online till now and any further representation/complaint received till 7.00 p.m. of Sunday, 27th May, 2018 and after due analysis, appropriate decision on case to case basis will be taken by the Committee.
As per the Order,in the first phase, the representations/complaints already received and of all the writ petitioners before this Court as well as different High Courts may be scrutinized and appropriate report/ recommendation/ decision thereon be recorded by the appropriate authority before 29th May, 2018 to be produced before the Court on 30th May, 2018. In the second phase, new/fresh representation/complaints received online upto 7.00 p.m. of Sunday, 27th May, 2018 be taken up for consideration 3 and, if possible, the scrutiny thereof be completed on the same lines as indicated above up to 29th May, 2018 and status report in that behalf be filed before the Court on 30th May, 2018
Senior Advocate Rakesh Munjal appearing for NUALS also submitted that as soon as fresh/new representations/complaints are received online, attempt will be made to acknowledge the same contemporaneously as far as possible. It is also submitted that a dedicated email account will be created for this purpose of which publicity will be given on the official website of CLAT and will be notified on the official website very shortly within two hours from now.
The Court has also made it clear that the interim stay regarding proceedings pending before different High Courts will continue to operate till the next date of hearing.
On Thursday, a bench of Justices Khanwilkar and Navin Sinha had inquired, “When such a dispute arises, is there any inbuilt mechanism for redressal by some authority or forum? Can you provide one so that each case is examined and a solution effected if there is actually an issue?”.
Agreeing that there should be a “better system” and and asserting that the University is not in an adversarial position to any candidate, Senior Counsel V. Giri, representing NUALS, submitted, “we have prepared an audit report of each aggrieved candidate...wherever there was a technical glitch or the system had locked out, extra time was allotted...”
Drawing the attention of the bench to the summary in respect of petitioner 1 Disha Panchal, he remarked, “she had taken 2 hours 26 minutes in writing the examination...the report even indicates such details as number of questions...”
When the counsel for the petitioners sought to indicate individual grievances, the bench observed, “now that we have the audit report as to how each petitioner operated the system, a redressal on a case to case basis will be given...”
The bench asked Mr. Giri to have a “wholesome, workable solution” by Friday, with Mr. Giri replying, “we are dealing with the 7 petitions ...we will have a holistic solution for all 250 complaints...we will have to sit down and speak with all registrars...if not tomorrow, we will come up with a solution by Monday...”