w w w . L a w y e r S e r v i c e s . i n



Manhish Singhvi v/s J.N.V. University, Jodhpur & Others

    Civil Writ Petn. No. 4116 of 1995

    Decided On, 23 February 2000

    At, High Court of Rajasthan

    By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE B.J. SHETHNA

    For the Petitioner: M.S. Singhvi, Advocate. For the Respondents: R3, J.M. Bhandari, B. D. Purohit, Advocates.



Judgment Text

1. The petitioner had joined the LL.M. Course in 1993 and passed his Ist year LL.M. Examination, 1994, wherein, he had secured 301 out of 500 total marks and stood II in the merit list next to Shri Ashwani Daiya - respondent No. 3, who secured 316 out of total 500 marks and stood at number 1 in the merit list of LL.M. Part Ist examination.

2. Both the petitioner as well as respondent No. 3 got admission in LL.M. IInd year examination, 1994. Last date for filling up the examination form of LL.M. Part II was 27-1-1995. The respondent No. 3 with other students of LL.M. Part II filled up the form before the expiry of last date i.e. 27-1-1995. However, the petitioner did not fill up the form before expiry of last date of 27-1-1995. Somewhere in March, 1995, all of sudden he woke up from slumber and made an application requesting the respondent University to permit him to fill up the form late after condoning the delay. However, the University did not reply to the same because there was no provision either under the Act, Rules or Regulations framed by the University to condone the delay and accept the form late after the last date of filling up the form expired.

3. The petitioner, therefore, filed writ petition No. 809/95 before this Court in March, 1995 within few days of submitting his application to the respondent University praying that the University be directed to allow him to appear in IInd year LL.M. Examination after accepting his form on the ground that he could not fill up his form before the last date of 27-1-1995 because he was ill and had gone for medical check up at Mumbai in October, 1994 and later on undergone an operation on 27-12-1994 and he resume his studies in IIIrd week of January, 1995 after taking rest as advised by Doctor and that he came to know only in March, 1995 that last date of filling up the examination form had already expired on 27-1-1995.

4. Prima facie it appears to me that such an explanation for not filling up the form before the last date of 27-1-1995 was nothing but an after-thought and the same is not at all believable. Be that as it may, when his writ petition was placed before the learned single Judge of this Court on 27-3-1995, by an ex parte interim order the respondent University was directed to permit the petitioner to appear in the examination of LL.M. IInd year, if otherwise he was found eligible. Therefore, University permitted the petitioner to appear in LL.M. Part II examination which was held in 1995.

5. On 2-7-95 the result of all the students, who appeared in LL.M. Part II examination, except the petitioner, was declared by the University, wherein, the respondent No. 3 stood first in the merit list with 306 out of total marks of 500.

6.

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Later on, the petitioner moved an application in his earlier W.P. No. 809/95 before this Court praying that respondent University be directed to declare his result of LL.M. Part II examination 1995 also as the result of others was already declared. Thereupon, the University was directed to produce the result of the petitioner before the Court and accordingly the same was brought in sealed cover which was opened by the learned single Judge in presence of learned counsel for the parties. The result shows that he secured 327 out of total 500 marks in LL.M. Part II examination of 1995. Thereafter, the matter was argued on merits and it was submitted by the learned counsel for the petitioner that Ordinance of the University shows that there was no time limit fixed for filling up the form, therefore, the University was wrong in not granting his request to fill up the form late after condoning the delay. However, it was pointed out by the learned counsel for the University that last date for filling up the form was clearly prescribed in the information book-let issued by the University and there was no provision for condoning delay under the Act or Rules, therefore, the petitioner had no case on merits. Hence his petition be dismissed. However, learned single Judge of this Court allowed the earlier W.P. No. 809/95 filed by the petitioner on 9-8-95 by observing that :-

"From the result it appears that the petitioner is a brilliant student and has successfully completed his Master of Laws Examination in Ist Division. I also find from the averment on oath supported by material in the shape of medical case that the petitioner was operated upon and in the process had to go to Bombay and at some occasions towards his treatment. The lapse on the part of the petitioner in filling up the form does not appear to be mala fide. In my opinion, it is a genuine case where respondent-University should have condoned the delay in filling up the form."

(Emphasis supplied)

7. Going through the judgment of learned single Judge of this Court, it is clear from the aforesaid that though the petitioner had no case on merits, his petition was allowed mainly on humanitarian ground though there was no provision of condoning the delay in filling up the examination form late after the last date.

8. The learned single Judge considered the fact that petitioner was allowed to sit in the examination under the orders of the Court and that he also cleared the examination, therefore, the respondent University was directed to supply necessary and requisite certificates under the Rules to the petitioner.

9. At the cost of repetition, I may state that there is no proviso either under the Act, Rules or the Regulations framed by the University to condone the delay in filling up the form late after expiry of prescribed date and there is a judgment of learned single Judge of this Court in case of M.C. Khandelwal v. Chairman, Board of Secondary Education reported in 1982 Raj LW 410 : (AIR 1983 Rajasthan 16) taking the view that in absence of any provision, re-evaluation cannot be done. This judgment was cited before me by none else but by Mr. M.S. Singhvi himself who is appearing for the petitioner in this case, which is sought to be used against the respondent No. 3. In my considered opinion, this judgment ought to have been pointed out by the petitioner himself in his earlier W.P. No. 809/95, but the same was not brought to the notice of learned single Judge. If, the judgment of Khandelwal's case (supra) was brought to the notice of learned single Judge by the petitioner then perhaps the learned single Judge would have dismissed the writ petition.

10. It must be stated that present respondent No. 3 was never in picture till the earlier writ petition was allowed by this Court on 9-8-95. As soon as the result was opened by the learned single Judge in the open Court and his marks were mentioned in the order of learned single Judge, the respondent No. 3 came to know that total marks of LL.M. Parts I and II of the petitioner was more than his total marks.

11. The respondent University officially declared the result of the petitioner on 16-8-1995. However, to get the law decided, it had also filed D. B. Civil Special Appeal No. 343/96 before the Division Bench of this Court against the order passed by the learned single Judge in favour of the petitioner in W.P. No. 809/95. In that appeal the present respondent No. 3 also made an application to implead him as party respondent. It was submitted by learned counsel Shri Bhandari of the University that law has been very well settled by the Apex Court that relief at interlocutory stage cannot be granted to the writ petitioners over riding the rules of the University. This submission of Mr. Bhandari was practically accepted by the Division Bench of this Court by observing that :-

"We do not however, hold that the University would not be within its power to pass, appropriate orders which would be justified in each case, but then in view of the peculiar facts and circumstances of the present case we are not inclined to interfere with the ultimate decision (that) has been taken by the learned single Judge."

(Emphasis supplied)

12. The Division Bench also rejected the application of the applicant Ashwani Daiya (present respondent No. 3) for impleading himself as party respodent in that appeal by observing that :-

"We do not think that the present applicant A.K. Daiya who secured a particular place in the LL.M. Final examination as and when Manish Singhvi's results were not declared had any vested right in the result so as to claim the first class first position ignoring the claim of Manish Singhvi, even after any declaration is made in his favour giving him an assurance as regards the gold medal. It is for the academic and administrative authorities of the University to take decsions in the matter. No vested rights have accrued in favour of A.K. Daiya in the circumstances as disclosed before us. The University is quite at liberty to take any appropriate decision in accordance with law."

(Emphasis supplied)

13. On the declaration of result of the petitioner on 16-8-1995 by the respondent University the present respondent No. 3 made a written application to the Registrar of the University on the very next day i.e. on 17-8-95 seeking permission for re-evaluation of his two papers out of four papers of LL.M. Part II examination, 1995. After seeking the opinion from its legal advisor Shri J.M. Bhandari, the respondent University granted the request of respondent No. 3 for re-examination of his two papers of LL.M. Part II examination, 1995. Accordingly, the respondent No. 3 applied for re-evaulation of his paper.

14. The petitioner, therefore, apprehended that if the papers of respondent No. 3 are re-evaluated and if he gets more marks after re-evaluation then he would be missing the good medal as well as the 1st position, therefore, to pre-empt that situation the petitioner has filed this petition before this Court on 14-12-1995 praying that respondent No. 1 University and respondent No. 2 its Deputy Registrar (Exams.) be directed to produce the order of permitting re-evaluation of answer books of respondent No. 3 of LL.M. Final year Examination, 1995 and the same may be declared illegal and accordingly it may be quashed. It is also prayed that respondent No. 1 University be directed to award the merit certificate of Ist rank in LL.M. Examination, 1995 and also to award the Gold Medal.

15. On 15-12-1995 while issuing notice on this petition, notice was also issued by the learned single Judge on stay petition and the respondent University was restrained from undertaking re-evaluation of papers of respondent No. 3 and declaring any result. The said ex parte ad interim relief was ordered to continue till disposal of writ petition. It may be stated that when my learned brother V.G. Palshikar, J. passed the order on 15-12-1995 on stay petition restraining the respondent University from undertaking re-evaluation of papers of respondent No. 3, that exercise was already completed, therefore, that (sic) of ex parte interim order was meaningless. However, later part of the interim relief restraining the University from declaring the result of respondent No. 3 was complied with.

16. When this main writ petition came up for hearing before me on 15-2-2000, at the time of hearing it was agreed by all the learned counsel for the parties Shri Manoj Bhandari for the petitioner, Shri J.M. Bhandari for the University and Shri B.D. Purohit for the respondent No. 3 that result of the repsondent No. 3 after re-evaluation of his papers be produced before this Court along with answer books of papers which were sent for re-evaluation. Accordingly, on 17-2-2000 Shri J.M. Bhandari for the respondent University produced the result of respondent No. 3 before me in a sealed cover which was opened in the presence of learned counsel for the parties. Thereafter, the matter was heard at great length and all the learned counsel for the parties addressed the Court for considerable time and on that day Mr. Singhvi brought to my notice the reply affidavit filed by University at typed page 5 and running page 38, which reads as under :-

".............Thereafter, the respondent No. 3 made an application on 26-10-1995 for re-evaluation. Due to the facts and circumstances of this particular case, the answering respondent accepted the application for re-evaluation and despatched the answer book on 25-11-1995 for re-evaluation."

17. But, it was pointed out by Shri B.D. Purohit for respondent No. 3 that the respondent No. 3 made an application seekng permission for re-evaluation of his marks on the very next day i.e. 17-8-95 of the declaration of the result of the petitioner which was declared on 16-8-95, and in response to that application, a reply dated 26-10-95 is received from the Deputy Registrar, Secrecy Branch of the respondent University stating that he was allowed to apply for the re-evaluation of the answer book of LL.M. Part II Examination, 1995 and the application for re-evaluation should reach the Secrecy Section by 31-10-95. Accordingly, he submitted the form for re-evaluation to the respondent University and thereafter the answer books were despatched on 25-11-95 for re-evaluation.

18. Under the circumstances, to clear all the doubts Mr. J. M. Bhandari for the University was directed to produce the entire record of the case on 18-2-2000. However, the same was produced before me on 23-2-2000 by Mr. Bhandari. Going through the entire record of the case produced by Mr. Bhandari, it is clear that there was a typing mistake at page No. 5 in the reply affidavit filed by the University, therefore, Mr. Singhvi has not pressed his argument about the averments made at page 5 running page 38 of the reply affidavit filed by the University.

19. Today, Mr. Singhvi, learned counsel for the petitioner submitted that the petitioner has made serious allegations against the respondent No. 2 particularly in paras Nos. 10 and 14 of the petition showing that how he was biased against the petitioner. He submitted that when the petitioner had gone to the office of University on 16-8-1995, while giving the mark sheet to him the respondent No. 2 threatened him that he will see to it that he does not get 'Gold Medal' and also Ist rank by informing the person who would be now at No. 2 to apply for re-evaluation though the time limit for the same had already expired. And, he will also see to it that he gets more marks on re-evaluation than the petitioner because he got the order from the Court in his favour. These allegations have been emphatically denied by the respondent No. 2 in his reply affidavit. Not only that, after going through the entire record of the case which includes the legal opinion of Mr. J.M. Bhandari, Senior Advocate of the Bar, it is clear that the allegations of mala fide against the respondent No. 2 made by the petitioner in paras Nos. 10 and 14 of this petition are totally baseless and without any substance.

20. Learned counsel Shri M. S. Singhvi for the petitioner submitted that for re-evaluation of marks a candidate has to submit an application in the prescribed form together with the requisite fees to the Registrar before expiry of 21 days from the date of declaration of his/her result. He, therefore, submitted that the result of the respondent No. 3 was already declared on 2-7-95 and for the first time after expiry of 21 days period the respondent No. 3 had applied for permission for re-evaluation of answer books only on 17-8-1995. Thus, there was a delay of about 24 days on the part of respondent No. 3 after the expiry of period of limitation of 21 days. He, therefore, submitted that it was wrong on the part of the University to entertain his application and grant such permission.

21. Merely because the petitioner appeared in the LL.M. Part II examination, 1995, under the ex parte interim orders of the Court and got his result declared finally, would not entitle him to file this petition. In my opinion, the petitioner had no locus standi to file such petition and make a grievance about entertaining the application for re-evaluation filed by respondent No. 3 by the respondent University. No rights much less fundamental rights of the petitioner guaranteed under the Constitution has been infringed in this case by the action of respondent University in granting re-evaluation application of respondent No. 3.

22. It does not lie goog in the mouth of a person like the petitioner to plead that the University ought not to have entertained the re-evaluation application of respondent No. 3 after delay of 24 days of expiry of prescribed time limit of 21 days, who himself got similar benefits from this Court in his earlier petition. It also appears to me that petitioner is lacking good sportsman spirit, therefore, he has filed this petition so that the advantage which he got because of indulgence of this Court, when his result was directed to be issued by the University and that he secured 327 out of total 500 marks in his LL.M. Part II examination, 1995 making his total more than that of the respondent No. 3 before re-evaluation, may not be lost.

23. That apart, both the learned counsel Shri J.M. Bhandari for the respondent University and Shri B.D. Purohit, for the respondent No. 3 have rightly submitted that there was no delay on the part of the respondent No. 3 in seeking permission for re-evaluation of his two out of four papers. It was submitted that general result of all the students including the respondent No. 3 was declared on 2-7-1995, wherein, the respondent No. 3 stood Ist with highest total marks of LL. M. Part Ist and IInd year, therefore, there was no need for the respondent No. 3 for re-evaluation. They submitted that when the result of the petitioner was declared on 16-8-1995 by the University as per the order of this Court in favour of the petitioner in his earlier petition, without wasting any time immediately on the next date i.e. on 17-8-95 the respondent No. 3 made an application for granting him permission to apply for re-evaluation of his two papers, that was within the time limit of 21 days. They have rightly submitted that if the petitioner was vigilent in filling up his form before the expiry of last date i.e. 27-1-1995 then he would have appeared in normal course along with other students in LL.M. Part II examination of 1995 and his result would have been also declared along with the other students on 2-7-95. However, though he resume his studies in IIIrd week of January, 1995, he did not fill up his form for appearing in the examination till the last date of 27-1-95 and he waited till March, 1995 and all of a sudden made an application to permit him to appear in the examination and in absence of any provision for condoning the delay in applying late for filling up the form the University rightly did not entertain his application, but it was because of the ex parte interim orders passed by this Court in favour of the petitioner, the petitioner was allowed to appear in the examination, however, his result was not ordered to be declared by this Court. Therefore, it was submitted by them that the petitioner cannot make any legitimate grievance about the respondent No. 3 applying for re-evaluation after declaration of his (petitioner's) result.

24. In my considered opinion, there is lot of force and substance in the above submission made by learned counsel Shri Bandari for the University and Shri Purohit for respondent No. 3. It would not be proper for me to express any opinion about the order passed by the learned single Judge, which was ultimately confirmed by the Division Bench. At the same time, it must be stated that the attitude of the petitioner in filing such petition is highly deplorable.

25. I am also conscious of the Judgment of learned single Judge of this Court in Khandelwal's case (AIR 1983 Rajasthan 16) (supra), wherein, the learned single Judge of this Court has categorically held that when there is no provision of condoning the delay in re-evaluation of marks it cannot be permitted after the prescribed time limit is over in absence of any specific provision for condonation of delay. However, considering the peculiar facts and circumstances of the case, in my opinion, the period of 21 days for applying for re-evaluation of papers would start from the date on which the result of the present petitioner was declared. The result of the petitioner was declared by the University on 16-8-95 as ordered by this Court and without wasting any time the respondent No. 3 immediately on the next day i.e. 17-8-95 applied for re-evaluation of papers. Thus, it cannot be said that there was any delay on the part of respondent No. 3 in applying for re-evaluation of papers. The present respondent No. 3 had to apply for re-evaluation of papers because in LL.M. Part Ist he secured 316 out of 500 total marks and in IInd LL.M. he got 306 out of 500 total marks. Thus, total marks of LL.M. Part I and II was 622 out of 1000 marks which was highest as per the general result declared by the respondent University on 2-7-95. That day the result of the petitioner was not declared, and it was declared only on 16-8-95 as ordered by this Court, wherein, he got 327 out of 500 total marks in LL.M. Part II. The petitioner got 301 out of 500 total marks in LL.M. Part I examination, making a total of 628 out of 1000 marks. Thus, the petitioner secured six more marks than the respondent No. 3. Under the circumstances, when the respondent No. 3 was pushed down at No. 2 position from No. 1 position in the merit list and denied the 'Gold Medal' then obviously anyone else in place of respondent No. 3 would have also applied for re-evaluation of his papers and exactly that was done by the respondent No. 3 without wasting any time and he (the respondent No. 3) had applied for re-evaluation of papers immediately on the next day of declaration of petitioner's result. In my considered opinion, the petitioner should not have at all objected to this. There should be healthy competition between brilliant students, and one should not try to get advantage of his own wrong at the cost of another brilliant student.

26. From the perusal of the result of re-evaluation of papers of respondent No. 3 it is clear that his total marks of LL.M. Part II examination, 1995 increased from 306 to 343. Thus, adding his 316 total marks of LL.M. Part I examination, of 1994 the total marks of respondent No. 3 for LL.M. Part I and II examination of 1994 and 1995 will come to 659 instead of 622 marks out of in all 1000 marks, which means that the respondent No. 3 has once again acquired Ist position and the present petitioner, according to his present total of 628 marks would be at No. 2 i.e. second to respondent No. 3.

27. It is clear from the above facts that petitioner was apprehensive that if the application of respondent No. 3 for re-evaluation of papers on declaration of his (petitioner's) result is accepted then the respondent No. 3 may get more marks, therefore, only with a view to stall such situation he has filed this petition which, in my considered opinion, was not at all proper and befitting to a brilliant student like him.

28. Learned counsel Shri Singhvi has also relied upon the judgment of Hon'ble Supreme Court in case of Punjab University v. T. P. Rehmatulla reported in (1998) 4 JT (SC) 408, wherein, it has been held that no relaxation in time limit for re-evaluation is permissible. There cannot be a quarrel with the principle laid down by the Hon'ble Supreme Court, but in the instant case the facts are otherwise.

29. If there was any delay on the part of the respondent No. 3 in applying for re-evaluation of his papers after declaration of result of petitioner then I would have definitely accepted this petition, but as stated earlier, the respondent No. 3 had immediately applied on the next day of declaration of petitioner's result which was within 21 days time for re-evaluation, therefore, there was no delay on the part of respondent No. 3. Hence, this judgment of Hon'ble Supreme Court has no application.

30. I may also state that Rule 13 was strongly relied upon by the learned counsel Shri J.M. Bhandari for the University which is reproduced as under :-

"Whenever the result of the candidates are altered due to re-evaluation and due to this re-evaluation the merit position is affected then the cases of those students whose position/merit is adversely affected be taken up for re-evaluation. Those candidate (s) be asked to give their option for getting re-evaluation of papers done because of this change. This process of seeking choice of papers be completed within 21 days from the date of declaration of result of re-evaluation thereafter the consequential changes in the merit list be made."

31. Mr. Singhvi for the petitioner had submitted that this Rule 13 has no application because Rule 13 applied only when the result of the candidates are altered due to re-evaluation and due to such re-evaluation the merit position is affected which is not the fact here because the result of petitioner was declared for the first time on 16-8-1995, wherein, he got 327 marks out of total 500 marks but it was not due to re-evaluation. Prima facie this submission of Mr. Singhvi appears to be sound, but on close and careful scrutiny of Rule 13, on the peculiar facts of the present case, this submission is without any substance for the following reasons :-

(i) the petitioner did not fill up the form before the last date of 27-1-1995 though he resume his studies in IIIrd week of January, 1995.

(ii) If not impossible, it is very difficult to believe that though he resume his studies in IIIrd week of January, 1995 he came to know about last date of 27-1-1995 of filling up the form only in March, 1995.

(iii) There is no provision under the Act or Rules or the Regulations framed by the University for condoning the delay in accepting the form after the prescribed time limit for it has expired. If the University does it in one case then other students may also not fill up their forms before the prescribed date and later on they may come with any excuses for not filling up the form before the prescribed last date which may or may not be genuine.

(iv) Though the petitioner obtained an ex parte order against the University for appearing in the examination of LL.M. Part II, he never obtained the order of declaration of his result, simultaneously with other students.

(v) He waited till the results of other students were declared on 2-7-95 and only thereafter, he applied before this Court for declaration of his result and this Court allowed his petition on 9-8-95 and in pursuance of that order the result was officially declared by the University on 16-8-95, by that time prescribed time limit of 21 days for re-evaluation of papers under Rule 13 had already expired.

32. Thus, in my considered opinion, the person like the petitioner cannot be allowed to get benefits of his own wrong and to deny the just and legitimate right of re-evaluation of papers of respondent No. 3 on declaration of his (petitioner's) result.

33. In view of the above discussion, I do not find any merit or substance in this petition and accordingly it is dismissed. The stay granted earlier stands vacated forthwith. The respondent University is directed to declare the result of re-evaluation of papers of respondent No. 3 and award merit certificate as well as Gold Medal to the respondent No. 3, which he deserves on re-evaluation, forthwith.
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