The Delhi High Court Friday allowed students to apply to Delhi University’s UG courses based on last year’s eligibility criteria. The court was hearing three pleas against the university’s changes to admission norms, on the day DU was supposed to finish registration for its UG courses.
A bench of Justice Anu Malhotra and Justice Talwant Singh asked the university to extend its registration till June 22. As of Friday night, 2.34 lakh students had signed up for various courses. The first cut-off was to be released on June 20. “DU has been asked to notify changes in its criteria six months in advance,” lawyer Charanpal Singh Bagri, who had filed a PIL challenging the new norms, told The Indian Express.
The bench observed that DU could have announced the changes earlier. “There is no dispute that you have to be in tune with the times… No one is saying your decision (amendment) is not right, but your timing may not be right,” it said. The court said the eligibility criteria was meant for students who gave their Class XII board exams this year, and that DU only announced the changes a day before registration was to begin.
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“Can you (DU) change it a day before? You could have given three months prior notice to students,” it said. The petitioners have alleged that the changed eligibility criteria of various courses, including BCom (Hons) and BA (Hons) in Economics, was “illegal” and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution as it was done “arbitrarily, without any prior notice”.
However, DU said the eligibility criteria changes every year and that the Bulletin of Information was meant for only one particular academic year. They also said there was no need to give prior notice before making changes to it. DU’s lawyers also told court that no student would be deprived of admission due to the new norms and that they could approach the court or the university’s grievance committee if they felt aggrieved.
(With PTI inputs)