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Committee of Management, S.D.P.G. College, Muzaffarnagar and ors. Vs. Vice-chancellor Chaudhary Charan Singh University, Meerut and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectConstitution;Election
CourtAllahabad High Court
Decided On
Case NumberC.M.W.P. No. 32743 of 2001
Judge
Reported in2001(4)AWC3194; (2002)1UPLBEC636
ActsUttar Pradesh State Universities Act, 1973 - Sections 2(13), 9, 13(1), 19, 60A, 68 and 69; Code of Civil Procedure (CPC), 1908 - Order 39, Rules 2 and 3; Constitution of India - Articles 226 and 227; Specific Relief Act
AppellantCommittee of Management, S.D.P.G. College, Muzaffarnagar and ors.
RespondentVice-chancellor Chaudhary Charan Singh University, Meerut and ors.
Advocates:Man Mohan Mittal and ;B.S. Bedi, Advs.
Cases ReferredMeerut v. Vice
Excerpt:
.....or a the question as to who has a right to manage the management is still pending before the vice-chancellor and it has been stated and admitted by both the parties, namely, petitioners as well as respondents who contested this writ petition that the vice-chancellor has invited both the parties to appear before him with regard, to their respective claims or rights to manage through election or otherwise and vice-chancellor is likely to take a decision particularly that the power exercised by the vice-chancellor as conferred on the vice-chancellor by means of provisions of section 2(13) read with statute 13.05 of the university. , 1981 uplbec 214, paragraph 20 of the aforesaid judgment is quoted below :by enacting section 69 of the act, the legislature intended to impose a bar on..........to the relief claimed in the writ petition after the order dated august 1, 2001 was passed by the vice-chancellor, chaudhary charan singh university, meerut, directing that the election of the committee of management scheduled to take place, which by the order of the vice-chancellor dated july 28, 2001, was postponed and inspite of the aforesaid order passed by the vice-chancellor staying the election. despite the order of vice-chancellor elections are said to have been held as a consequence thereof an enquiry committee consisting of three principals was set up, which is directed to conduct the enquiry and submit its report to the vice-chancellor. the vice-chancellor further passed order that till the recommendation of the committee is received, the old committee, which is at present in.....
Judgment:

Anjani Kumar, J.

1. By means of this writ petition, the committee of management Sanatan Dharm Post Graduate College, Muzaffarnagar has challenged the order dated August 14, 2001 (Annexure-17 to the writ petition), passed by Civil Judge (Jr. Div.) Muzaffarnagar entertaining the suit filed on behalf of the respondents and granting ex parte injunction order under Order XXXIX, Rule 2, Code of Civil Procedure. This order is challenged by the petitioners, inter alia, on the grounds that according to the relief claimed in the writ petition after the order dated August 1, 2001 was passed by the Vice-Chancellor, Chaudhary Charan Singh University, Meerut, directing that the election of the committee of management scheduled to take place, which by the order of the Vice-Chancellor dated July 28, 2001, was postponed and inspite of the aforesaid order passed by the Vice-Chancellor staying the election. Despite the order of Vice-Chancellor elections are said to have been held as a consequence thereof an enquiry committee consisting of three Principals was set up, which is directed to conduct the enquiry and submit its report to the Vice-Chancellor. The Vice-Chancellor further passed order that till the recommendation of the committee is received, the old committee, which is at present in the effective control of the affairs of the college of the management, will continue to conduct the management of the institution. After this order was passed by the Vice-Chancellor, two writ petitions were filed before this Court. One being Writ Petition No. 30551 of 2001 was filed by the contesting respondents of the present writ petition and plaintiffs of Suit No. 475 of 2001 with the following prayers :

'(i) issue a writ, order or direction in the nature of certiorari calling upon the respondents to produce records for quashing of the impugned order dated 1.8.2001 passed by the respondent No. 2 (Annexure-10 to the writ petition).

(ii) issue a writ, order or direction in. the nature of mandamus directing the respondents not to interfere in the functioning of the petitioner in the affairs of the S.D. (P.G.) College, Muzaffarnagar.

(iii) issue any other writ, order or direction which this Hon'ble Court may deem it fit and proper in the circumstances of the case.

(iv) Award the cost of the petition to the petitioner.'

The aforesaid writ petition was dismissed as not pressed by this Court on August 16, 2001. The order dated August 16, 2001, passed by this Court is quoted below :

'Learned counsel for the petitioner Sri R.B. Singhal stated that this writ petition may be dismissed as not pressed. It is, accordingly, dismissed as not pressed,'

2. The second writ petition that was filed by the present petitioners, i.e., Writ Petition No. 32021 of 2001, has been dismissed as withdrawn with liberty to file a fresh writ petition by this Court on 3.9.2001. The prayer made in Writ Petition No. 32021 of 2001 is reproduced below :

'(i) issue a writ, order or direction in the nature of mandamus restraining the respondents from interfering in the affairs of the institution/petitioners in their different capacity.

(ii) issue a writ, order or direction in the nature of mandamus directing respondents to follow direction of Vice-Chancellor dated 28.7.2001, regarding management of election and not to interfere in the working of petitioners till the matter is finally decided.

(iii) issue any suitable writ, order or direction which thisHon'ble Court may deem fit and proper in the circumstances of the case.

(iv) award the cost to the petitioner.'

The order dated 3.9.2001, by which the aforesaid writ petition was directed to be dismissed as withdrawn is reproduced below ;

'Learned counsel appearing on behalf of the petitioners made a statement that he wants to withdraw the present writ petition because of the technical objections raised by Sri R.B. Singhal, learned counsel for the respondent No. 4 (Caveator). The writ petition is accordingly dismissed as withdrawn with liberty to file a fresh writ petition.'

3. Inspite of these two writ petitions filed before this Court, the petitioners of Writ Petition No. 30551 of 2001 (respondents in the instant petition) filed a Suit No. 475 of 2001, out of which the impugned order in the present writ petition was passed. The reliefs sought for in the suit clearly show from the perusal of plaint, which is annexed as Annexure-15 to the writ petition, that it is in effect of the order dated August 1, 2001, Annexure-13 to the writ petition, by which the plaintiffs of the said Suit No. 475 of 2001 challenged the arrangement that is made vide order dated August 1, 2001.

4. That the Vice-Chancellor is also one of the authority/officer of the University. Section 68 of the U.P. Universities Act, 1973, (hereinafter shall be referred to as the 'Act') is relevant to be reproduced here, which, inter alia, provides that :

'68. If any question arises whether any person has been duly elected or appointed as, or is entitled to be, a member of any authority or other body of the University, or whether any decision of any authority or officer of the University (including any question as to the validity of a Statute, Ordinance or Regulation not being a statute orOrdinance or approved by the State Government or by the Chancellor) is in conformity with this Act or the Statutes or the Ordinances made thereunder, the matter shall be referred to the Chancellor and the decision of the Chancellor thereon shall be final :

Provided that no reference under this Section shall be made :

(a) more than three months after the date when the question could have been raised for the first time ;

(b) by any person other than an authority or officer of the University or a person aggrieved ;

Provided further that the Chancellor may in exceptional circumstances-

(a) act suo motu or entertain a reference after the expiry of the period mentioned in the preceding proviso ;

(b) where the matter referred relates to a dispute about the election, and the eligibility of the person so elected is in doubt, pass such orders of stay, as he thinks just and expedient.'

5. Section 69 of the Act is also relevant, which is reproduced below :

'69. No suit or other legal proceedings shall lie against the State Government or the Director of Education (Higher Education) or the Deputy Director (as defined in Section 60A) or the Authorised Controller or the University or any Officer, authority or body thereof in respect of anything done or purported or intended to be done in pursuance of the Act or the Rules or the Statutes or the Ordinances made thereunder.'

6. Sri Man Mohan Mittal, President of the committee of management of the petitioners appearing in person submitted the following points for consideration, that the Suit No. 475 of 2001 was not maintainable in view of the provisionsof Section 69 of the Act ; that in any view of the matter, in view of the provisions of Order XXXIX, Rule 2, proviso Clause (h) as applicable in State of U.P., no injunction, much less any ex parte injunction, could have been granted by the learned civil court and thus the order is without Jurisdiction ; that in view of the order dated August 1, 2001, the grievance, if any, of the plaintiffs of Suit No. 475 of 2001 was not by way of filing a suit but by way of reference under Section 68 of the Act. According to the statutes applicable to the University, the question as to who has a right to manage the institution is pending enquiry before the Vice-Chancellor and the Vice-Chancellor by way of an interim arrangement has directed that the old committee of management, which is in fact controlled the affairs of the management of the committee, should continue till final order was passed by the Vicc-Chancellor in the matter of management, does not require any interference much less the interference by means of an injunction which in terms amounts to allowing the plaintiffs to take over the management even without adjudication upon the suit. The question as to who has a right to manage the management is still pending before the Vice-Chancellor and it has been stated and admitted by both the parties, namely, petitioners as well as respondents who contested this writ petition that the Vice-Chancellor has invited both the parties to appear before him with regard, to their respective claims or rights to manage through election or otherwise and Vice-Chancellor is likely to take a decision particularly that the power exercised by the Vice-Chancellor as conferred on the Vice-Chancellor by means of provisions of Section 2(13) read with Statute 13.05 of the University.

7. It is, thus contended that apart from the suit being not maintainable in view of the provisions of the Specific Relief Act, no injunction could have been granted, particularly in view of the statutory bar as contained under Section 69 of the Act. The respondents replied to the aforesaid argument that if the suitwas not validly instituted, the petitioners should not have rushed up to this Court but in case they feel aggrieved, they should have gone before the civil court, either for the recall of the order of injunction impugned in the present writ petition, or may approach the appellate court. It is contended by the petitioners that admittedly the petitioners were not parry to the said suit and the suit has not been filed even with the prior notice as contemplated under Order XXXIX, Rule 3 of the Code of Civil Procedure. The petitioners have relied upon the Division Bench decision of this Court in Committee of Management of Ambika Pratap Narain Degree College, Basti and Anr. v. Gorakhpur University, Gomkhpur and another. 1988 ALJ 709. Paragraph 2 of the aforesaid judgment is reproduced below :

'2. We do not consider it necessary to enter into the question whether the election claimed by the petitioners were held in accordance with the bye-laws of the institution or whether on merits the petitioners had a right to be recognised as the duly constituted Committee of Management of Ambika Pratap Narain Degree College as, in our opinion, the Impugned order can be challenged by the petitioners by way of representation before the Chancellor under Section 68 of the U.P. State Universities Act.'

8. That the petitioners further relied upon another Division Bench decision in Bhumitra Deo and Ors. v. IInd Addl. C.J., Gorakhpur and Ors., 1999 (2) ALR 216, wherein the Division Bench of this Court after citing the provisions of Section 69 of the Act has observed as under :

'From a bare perusal of the aforementioned Section 69 of the Universities Act, it is crystal clear that no suit can be instituted in respect of anything done or purported or intended to be done pursuant to the Act or the Rules of the Statutes or the Ordinance made thereunder.'

9. The other decision relied upon by the petitioners is Rajendra v. Civil Judge, Bulandshahr and Ors., 1981 UPLBEC 214, Paragraph 20 of the aforesaid Judgment is quoted below :

'By enacting Section 69 of the Act, the Legislature intended to impose a bar on the jurisdiction of the civil courts to entertain a suit against the authorities designated therein as well as against any act or order or any authority, officer or body constituted under the Act. In view of this provisions no suit is maintainable before a civil court challenging the recommendations made by the Selection Committee or an order passed by a Vice-Chancellor or a Chancellor. The Selection Committee is an authority as declared by Section 19 of the Act. Similarly, the Vice-Chancellor and the Chancellor, both are officers of the University as provided by Section 9 of the Act. These orders cannot be challenged before any civil court in view of Sections 68 and 69 of the Act.'

10. The petitioners further relied upon a decision in Committee of Management, Deo Nagri Post Graduate College, Meerut v. Vice-chancellor, Choudhary Charan Singh University, Meerut and Ors., 1997 (3) AWC 1902. Paragraph 3 of the aforesaid judgment, which is relevant for the purposes of present controversy is reproduced below :

'Clause (a) of Sub-section (1) of Section 13 of the Act provides that the Vice-Chancellor shall be the principal executive and academic officer of the University and shall supervise and control over the affairs of the University, including the constituent colleges and the Institutes maintained by the University and its affiliated and 'associated colleges. This provisions vests in the Vice-Chancellor to exercise the general supervisory power and control over all the affairs of the college. In exercise of such power, the Vice-chancellor haspower to make enquiry in the affairs of a college himself or to appoint a committee to make an enquiry and such committee is to submit a report to the Vice-Chancellor. It is not necessary that an opportunity of hearing is to be given by the Vice-Chancellor before constituting an enquiry committee.'

11. The respondents have also relied upon certain decisions of this Court as well as the Apex Court, but all relate to general provisions of the suit and none deals with the provisions like that of Section 69 of the U.P. State Universities Act, 1973. In view of the law laid down with regard to the State Universities Act, the general law will not be helpful to the respondents. Apart from above, so far as the respondents' arguments regarding the petitioners' availing the remedy of either filing an application for vacation of the injunction or of availing the remedy of an appeal before the learned civil court, suffice it to say that in view of the facts and circumstances that the advocates of the western districts of U.P. being on strike, it has not been controverted by the either side that civil courts in the district of Muzaffarnagar are not functioning. This coupled with the fact that in view of the law, referred to above, that suit itself is being barred by virtue of the provisions of Section 69 of the Act, there is no bar to this Court entertaining this writ petition and the writ petition is, therefore, entertained and the objections of the respondents are rejected. Further the fact in support of the petitioners' arguments that Vice-Chancellor has already invited both the petitioners as well as the respondents to appear before them pursuance to the order dated August 1, 2001 and to adjudicate the matter in case the enquiry report is submitted. In this view of the matter also, this writ petition deserves to be entertained.

12. In view of the facts and circumstances stated above and in the interest of justice, it is held that Suit No. 475 of 2001 filed by the respondents is a suit, which is not maintainable in view of the bar under Section 69 of the U.P. State Universities Act, 1973. The Civil Judge (Jr. Div.), Muzaffarnagar, before passing of the aforesaid injunction order should have taken care to look into the statutory bar, which he completely overlooked and, therefore, his order dated August 14, 2001, is amenable to writ jurisdiction of this Court under Article 226/227 of the Constitution of India. Apart from the above, since the Vice-Chancellor is seized of the matter regarding the adjudication of the dispute, it is not in the interest of justice that this Court should express any opinion on the merits of the case. This writ petition is, therefore, finally disposed of with the following observations :

(1) The Suit No. 475 of 2001 filed on behalf of the respondents is not maintainable. The order of injunction dated 14.8.2001 passed in Civil Suit No. 475 of 2001 is hereby quashed.

(2) The Vice-Chancellor, Choudhary Charan Singh University, Meerut, is directed to complete the enquiry, which has commenced pursuance to his order dated August 1, 2001, preferably within a period of three months' from the date of presentation of a certified copy of this order before him and decide the matter in terms of law particularly Statute 13.05 of the University concerned.

(3) Till the Vice-Chancellor decides the matter as directed above, the status quo with regard to the management shall be maintained in accordance with the order dated August 1, 2001.

13. With the aforesaid observations, the writ petition is finally disposed of. There will be no order as to costs.


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