New Delhi: The decision of NLU-Delhi (National Law University) to reserve 50% of its seats for the students of Delhi has been stayed by the Delhi High Court on Monday.
“The state government and the University has completely bypassed the governing council in the decision. The governing council is the authority that formulates and reviews the broad policies of NLU-Delhi time-to-time. This is prima facie”, said a bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Subramonium Prasad.
It has been noted by the High Court that a high-powered committee was examining the situation. The committee is headed by Justice NV Ramana of the Supreme Court. The committee was examining whether the reservation should be provided to students of Delhi in NLU-Delhi or not. Still, the NLU-Delhi went ahead and decided for itself to reserve 50% of its seats for the students of Delhi.
The Court also noted that there is nothing on record which can demonstrate that any recommendation was made before the governing council. This council is constituted to take all the decisions of NLU-Delhi on all the important matters which is related to the University or its functioning.
A plea was filed by the NLU-Delhi students and the alumni students. They challenged the decision of the University to make reservations. They said that the decision strikes at the heart of the national character and the excellent standards of the University. The court has listed the matter for August 18 after granting an interim stay and asking the University to follow the admission formula of last year.
The Aam Aadmi Party has opposed the plea. They have said that these students and alumni have no locus to challenge an administrative order. Since it funds the University, it has backed the 50% quota. Ramesh Singh was the state government’s standing counsel. He argued that the NLU-Delhi was not a central university but a state university. It came into existence based on the Act which was enacted by the State Legislature.
NLU-Delhi’s move to increase its seats from 80 to 120 was also challenged by the petition. The petition said that this was against the express decision of the University’s governing council. The petition also said that there was a lack of infrastructure like hostels for students, teaching accommodation and classrooms.
50% of the total seats were reserved by the NLU-Delhi for those candidates who were passing the qualifying examination from a recognized school, college, or institution which was located in the National Capital Territory of Delhi.