Delhi High Court has granted relief to a student of GGSIP University who was detained for shortage of attendance despite being allowed to appear for the exams and attend classes for the next semester.
While quashing the order of the University, the Single Bench of Justice Jayant Nath noted that the University completely failed to comply with the statutory requirement of announcing the names of the students who were not eligible to appear in the semester exam at least 5 calendar days before the start of the examination.
The Petitioner in the present case had challenged an order dated January 30, 2018, wherein the Petitioner was informed that they were detained in end term examination due to shortage of attendance.
The Petitioner had called that order illegal and arbitrary as she was both allowed to sit for the V semester exams and get attendance for the VI semester. She never received any information from the University, despite making multiple representations, about whether they were eligible to sit for the V semester exams in the first place.
The Petitioner also relied upon Clause 9.2 of the Ordinance which stated that the Dean of the School/Director/Principal shall announce the names of all such students who are not eligible to appear in the semester term end examination at least 5 calendar days before start of the examination and simultaneously intimate the same to the Controller of the examination.
While calling the allegation of non-display of notice about aggregate of attendance an afterthought, the University argued that the parents were sent individual letters by speed post on 09.09.2017 and 13.11.2017. A notice dated 09.11.2017 was also published where the students were advised to see their cumulative aggregate attendance.
The University further argued that the Petitioner was not issued the admit card by the answering respondent based on the said notice. However, she clandestinely appeared in the Vth semester on a false plea that she had misplaced her admit card.
Observations of the Court
The court observed that the University issued the notice on 28.11.2017 whereas admittedly the practical exams had begun on 13.11.2017. Hence, the notice was also issued much after the commencement of examination.
The court said:
'This is so as the said stipulation of giving 5 calendar days advance notice to the students before start of examination informing them that they are not eligible to appear in the semester examination is a stipulation for the benefit of the students. It brings certainty to the procedure for stopping a student from sitting in an examination on the grounds of shortage of attendance. It is manifest from the events that have been stated above that the respondent failed to comply with the said provision of Clause 9.2 of the Ordinance in question.'
The court further noted that:
'The petitioners were allowed to give the Vth semester and thereafter, to sit in the classes in the month of January for the VIth semester. It is only on 30.01.2018 that they were stopped from further attending the VIth semester classes. The respondent cannot be allowed to ignore clause 9.2 of the Ordinance and act contrary to the same.'
In light of this, the court directed the University to declare the Petitioner's results from V to VIII semester.
'Prior to declaring the results, the respondents are free, if they so desire, to organize appropriate additional classes for the petitioners for the Vth semester to enable the students to make up their attendance for the said year. In case the respondent decide to organise such additional classes, they may charge reasonable pro rata expenses from the petitioners for organizing such classes.'
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