HC directs IIT-Bombay to consider admitting student on supernumerary seat
The court however directed the Director of IIT-Bombay to consider admitting the aspirant this year as it would elevate the image of the institute and not malign it by creating a supernumerary seat in the current academic year or accommodate him next year.Updated: Oct 23, 2020, 14:58 IST
In a setback for a 23-year-old aspiring to get admitted to a diploma course in the Industrial Design Centre of the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay (IIT-B), the Bombay high court has refused to give any directions to the institute to admit the student. The court while passing its judgement in the matter on Friday held that though initially it was inclined to help the aspirant student who is from the reserved category, it was not doing so as both the institute and the aspirant were equally responsible for the situation. The court however directed the Director of IIT-B to consider admitting the aspirant this year as it would elevate the image of the institute and not malign it by creating a supernumerary seat in the current academic year or accommodate him next year.
The aspirant student who had completed the selection process of the institute on July 21, had approached the court after he failed to get the intimation email from the institute on August 2 and thus lost the seat. The email was sent by the institute to all the students who were shortlisted and asked them to complete the admission procedure before the deadline of August 6.
During the hearing, the institute admitted that the email had not reached the aspirant student but claimed that had the student been diligent and checked the IIT-B website he would have known about his selection in the final list and secured his seat. In light of this the institute claimed that due to the lapse on the part of the student, the institute could not be faulted and directed to admit the student belatedly.
On Friday, the division bench of chief justice Dipankar Datta and justice Girish Kulkarni while pronouncing its judgement in the petition filed by Prathmesh Pedamkar through advocate Ashraf Shaikh observed that after hearing both sides it was of the opinion that it would not be required to interfere and issue directions to the institution to admit the student.
While arguing, Shaikh had submitted that his client had approached the court after he was directed by the cyber cell of Navi Mumbai police. They had said that it could only find out if the IIT-B had sent him the intimation email as claimed by them if there was a court order. Shaikh had also submitted that after the institute had changed its entire admission procedure due to the pandemic, it had been sending emails and phone messages to all aspirants about every stage of the admission process. His client had responded to all the emails and completed his admission process which ended on July 21. Thereafter the institute had informed that selected candidates would be intimated through email.
Shaikh had submitted that it was only on August 21 that his client contacted the institute to be told that he had been shortlisted and an email had been sent to him on August 2. However when he sought details of the original sent email, the institute refused to share and hence he approached the Navi Mumbai cyber cell.
While opposing the petition advocate Arsh Mishra for the IIT-B had submitted that though the email had been blocked by the spam filter and not reached the aspirant, he could have checked on the website and known about his selection just like 18 other aspirants who had not received the email. Mishra submitted that 14 aspirants after finding their names on the institute’s website had secured their admission and hence Pedamkar could not claim any reliefs.
After hearing the submissions the court had initially observed that it wanted to help the student and had asked the institute to admit the student either in the current academic year or the next year without making the aspirant go through the admission process next year. However after the institute refused, the court called for past orders of the Supreme Court and other high courts wherein institutes were directed to admit a student to the current academic year by creating a supernumerary seat. Shaikh had furnished orders of both the SC as well as other HC’s which directed institutes to admit a student who was refused admission for no fault of his/her.
The court directed the institute to convey its decision to the student within four weeks and also permitted the student to take recourse to appropriate remedy if he was not admitted by the institute.