1. The facts in this case are shortly as follows : The petitioner passed the School-Final Examination from the National Council of Education, Jadavpur, in 1952. He then entered the City College, and in the year 1954 appeared in the I. A. Examination of the University of Calcutta as a regular student. He failed in this Examination. In 1955, he appeared in the same examination as a casual student. It appears that he was found guilty of malpractice at this examination and by an order of the Vice-Chancellor and the Syndicate of the Calcutta University, his examination for 1955 was cancelled and he was debarred from appearing in the 1956 Examination. On 6th September, 1956 the petitioner applied for permission to appear as an external student in the 1957 Examination, which was to be held sometime in March 1957. On 10th November, 1956 such permission was refused on the ground that he had not passed the Matriculation or the School Final Examination of the West Bengal Secondary Board of Education within the previous three years. On 24th November, 1956 he applied to appear as a casual student from the Charu Chandra College, wherein he had taken admission, passed the test and had deposited the necessary fees. It is stated that the Principal of the College duly certified his case and an Admit Card was issued, his roll No. being Cal-N 146. As the petitioner did not receive any reply to his application other than receiving the Admit Card, the application was renewed on 26th February, 1957 again through the Principal. It appears further that on 21st February, 1957 the Controller had made an order withholding the Admit Card.
2. The petitioner thereupon came up to this Court and a Rule was issued on 13th March, 1957 calling upon the opposite parties to show cause why a Writ in the nature of Mandamus should not issue directing them to forbear from giving effect to the order contained in the Memorandum dated 21st February, 1957 complained of in the petition, and/or why the said order should not be quashed and why such further or other order or orders should not be made as to this Court may seem fit and proper. At first no interimorder was granted but it appears from the minutes however that on 18th March, 1957 an order was made as follows:
'It is stated before me that now it has been arranged that the petitioner will be allowed to sit in the examination without prejudice to the rights and contentions of the parties in the Rule. The petitioner however will personally meet the Controller of Examination and apply to have a new roll number,'
3. Subsequently, the petitioner has been allowed to sit in the examination and it is stated before me that he has passed the examination, although his marks had been withheld from publication pending the disposal of this application. It appears from the pleadings that the stand taken on behalf of the respondents is that the Regulation 4-A in Chapter XXXI of the Regulations of the University of Calcutta (unrepealed) applies to the facts of this case, and the petitioner cannot be allowed to sit in the examination because prior to his appearing in the said examination he had not undergone a fresh course of study at least for one academical year preceding the examination. According to the petitioner, not Regulation 4-A but 4-B applies. The relevant part of Regulation 4-A runs as follows :
'If a student, after completion of a regular course of study for the examination .....does not register himself as a candidate for, or appear at, any of the two examinations immediately succeeding the examination following the completion of his regular course of study as aforesaid, he may appear at any of the three subsequent examinations of the same standard on payment of the prescribed fee, provided that he produces a certificate testifying to his good character during the intervening period as above, and provided further that he prosecutes a fresh course of study for at least one academical year immediately preceding the examination at which he presents himself.If such student desires to present himself at any subsequent examination, he shall be required to prosecute a fresh course of study for the full period in accordance with the Regulations.'
4. It is quite clear that this Rule cannot apply, because the petitioner has appeared in an examination following the completion of his regular course oi studies. As stated above he appeared in the 1954 Examination, after a period of regular study. It is clear therefore that it is not Regulation 4-A but 4-B that applies, the relevant part whereof runs as follows:
'If a student appears at the examination and fails, he may appear at any of the two following examinations of the same standard, on payment of the prescribed fee, .....'.
5. In such a case, he has to produce the necessary certificate from the Principal or such other persons as are indicated in the Rule. So far as the certificates are concerned, it is conceded that this is in order. The point therefore resolves itself to this, namely, if the petitioner had appeared in 1954 and if his examination in 1955 was cancelled and if he was debarred from appearing in the examination in 1956, whether the examination in 1957 would come within the scope of Regulation 4-B. In other words, whether it would be included within the words 'two following examinations'. It has been argued on behalf of the respondents, that the two following examinations would be the examinations in 1955 and 1956 and it did not matter whether the petitioner was debarred from appearing in 1956. On behalf of the petitioner, however, it is argued that the two following examinations must bo the two following examinations in which the petitioner could sit. It is of course possible to argue in favour of both views. The University of Calcutta, however, is primarily an examining body and the Rules and Regulations must be construed in favour of the examinees, and not against them. In my view it would be too harsh and unjust to construe the Rules, as meaning that a candidate should be penalised for not appearing in an examination in which the University itself has made it impossible for him to sit. In my view such an interpretation should not be accepted and the two following examinations must mean such examinations in which the petitioner could sit. Of course, if an examination was held in which the petitioner of his own accord did not sit, that would be quite another matter. In my view, this is the interpretation that should be adopted, namely, that the two following examinations must mean the examinations in which the candidate could sit, and would not include an examination in which he could not sit by an order of the university itself. That being so, the petitioner must be taken to have duly complied with Regulation 4-B and he should not be penalised. In any other view of the matter, the petitioner's examination in which he has already appeared and passed, will be rendered a nullity, and he would have to undertake the entire course once more, which, as I have already said, would be harsh and unjust and, as now held, contrary to the Rules.
6. This Rule must, therefore, be madeabsolute and the respondents must be directedto publish the petitioner's results and not towithhold the same and there will be an appropriate Writ issued therefor. I make no orderas to costs.