Nine final year students of the Maulana Azad Institute of Dental Sciences (MAIDS) filed a petition. The order came in a writ petition moved by the students of MAIDS in The High Court of Delhi. The Writ challenges the announcement of the date for the submission of the thesis to June 30. This came up without any proper notice to the students.
Facts of the Case
The petitioners here are final year students pursuing Master of Dental Sciences. As per the Petitioners, they have to submit a thesis as part of their course curriculum. The amended ordinance of Delhi University (DU) fixed the submission deadline to 15th October 2020. It is extendable for up to two weeks. But, the Petitioners were recently informed that they have to submit their thesis by 30th June 2020. The same is extendable up to 31st July with a late fee.
Mr. Sarthak Maggon, Ld. Counsel for the petitioner submits the following arguments before the court:
- The new date is arbitrary as students weren’t given prior notice about the changed submission date.
- The deadline for submission of a thesis at such short notice especially during a pandemic has created panic amongst the students.
- The Board of Research Studies(BRS) has no power to amend the resolution of the Executive Council.
- Four out of the nine Petitioners are on COVID duty.
Mr. Mohinder Rupal, Ld. Counsel appearing for DU submits that after the amendment of an ordinance on 20-21st July 2019 the BRS had met on 16th September 2019. And the BRS decided the date of thesis submission to be 30th April 2020. Thus, the extended deadline of 30th October 2020 was never intimated to the students as the BRS had not approved it.
Mr. Rupal further opposes the allegation in the writ petition that the BRS’s minutes are fabricated. And it is a very serious allegation which cannot be gone into at this stage by the Court.
MAIDS informed the court that there was a lot of confusion on applying the amended Ordinance. It was only on 4th July that MAIDS received an email from the DU. It stated that the deadline for submission of the thesis would not be October 30. But it would be June 30, extendable till July 31 with a late fee.
The Court has considered the submissions of the parties i.e., MAIDS, DU, and the Petitioners. Hence, the court observed that:
- MAIDS and MAMC (Maulana Azad Medical College) are two separate institutions. And MAIDS did not take part in the meeting of the BRS.
- Insofar to the concern of authorities, there is confusion due to the amendment in the Ordinance.
- One thing is clear that the last date for submission of the thesis has confused the students.
A Single Bench of Justice Pratibha Singh granted an extension of time for submission of the thesis till 30th September 2020. The same shall however be subject to payment of a late fee of Rs. 5,000/-.
The Court further held that those who can submit their thesis by 31st July 2020 could do so without any late fee payment.
The Court will next take up this matter on September 9th, 2020.
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