Madras High Court Awards Rs. 5 lakh Compensation to BDS aspirant

Madras High Court Awards Rs. 5 lakh Compensation to BDS aspirant

The Madras High Court, in a recent decision, awarded Rs. 5 Lakh to an SC female candidate who was denied admission to a college in Tiruchengode in Namakkal district in 2014. She was denied admission due to inaction on the part of the authorities concerned. Justice S M Subramaniam held the then secretaries of the Tamil Nadu Health Department, the Selection Committee and the KSR Dental College responsible for the denial of admission in BDS course to A Jayaranjani and directed them to pay the compensation within four weeks.

Proportioning the compensation amount, the judge said the secretaries of health and the selection panel should jointly pay Rs 3 lakh and the college Rs 2 lakh to the petitioner.

The case

The petitioner belongs to the Scheduled Caste community and her father passed away in 2011 and her mother, a widow, is supporting the family. She secured 1,063 marks in the higher secondary public examination conducted in March 2014 and applied for the MBBS/BDS course.

The petitioner was selected and offered admission to BDS and allotted to the KSR Dental College in Tiruchengodu. On September 30, 2014, the Selection Committee issued the order of allotment. On account of the late issuance of an admission card, the petitioner was unable to reach the college on time. However, the next morning she, along with her grandfather, reported to the institution but instead of verifying the certificates and admitting her to the course, the college Administrative Officer refused admission.

In such circumstances, when the college failed to act upon the allotment order issued by the Selection Committee, the selection panel ought to have initiated action against it by making a complaint to the competent authority. However, no such action was taken against the college knowingly and therefore, this Court would be able to form an opinion that all the three respondents — the health secretary, the selection committee and the college — have jointly contributed to the denial of the right of admission to the petitioner to undergo BDS course.

Further, records reveal that the Selection Committee itself conducted the counselling on the very last date, i.e., September 30, and issued the allotment order at 4 pm. Thus, the petitioner reported on October 1 at 9 AM.

Therefore, the petitioner has not committed any fault or delay in reporting before the college. It was the mistake committed by the Selection Committee in not conducting the counselling in advance or providing information to the college on the same day as admitting the petitioner.

It ought to have informed the college not to admit any other students on September 30 in view of the fact that an allotment order was issued in favour of the petitioner on the same day.

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