SC to Hear St Stephen’s Plea Against HC Order on DU Admission Policy Today

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The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear on Monday a plea of ST Stephen’s College against a Delhi High Court order which had asked it to follow the admission policy of the Delhi University.

Chief Justice Uday Umesh Lalit, in his administrative capacity, has ordered the listing of the case of the minority institution before a bench comprising Justices Ajay Rastogi and C T Ravikumar, as on October 10 Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul recused himself saying he is an alumnus of the institution and would not like to judge the case due to present vitiated atmosphere.

The environment has been vitiated to an extent where it becomes difficult for us. It makes no difference to me as to what I will rule or how I will rule. But what can be done…It is an issue of constitutional interpretation. It is not something which can be settled. A call will have to be taken on how it is to be read, Justice Kaul had said while recusing from the hearing.

The Delhi High Court had on September 12 asked the Christian minority institution to follow the admission policy formulated by the Delhi University, according to which 100 per cent weightage has to be given to the Common University Entrance Test (CUET)-2022 score while granting admission to non-minority students in its undergraduate courses.

The high court had said the college cannot conduct interviews for non-minority category students and that the admission should be as per the CUET score alone. The high court had also said the rights accorded to a minority institution under the Constitution cannot be extended to non-minorities.

It had said the college has the authority to conduct interviews, in addition to the CUET score, for the admission of Christian students but it cannot force the non-minority candidates to additionally undergo an interview. The HC bench, while asking St Stephen’s to withdraw its prospectus giving 15 per cent weightage to interview for admission to these unreserved seats, besides taking into consideration the CUET score of a candidate, had, however, ruled that the DU “cannot insist upon a single merit list for admission of candidates belonging to the Christian community regardless of denomination, etc”.

The high court’s order had come on petitions filed by a law student and the college with respect to the legality of the procedure for admission of students against unreserved non-minority seats for UG courses.

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