The Court was left frustrated as the University could not file a rejoinder in seven months, citing the ‘lack of time’.
In keeping with the Prime Minister’s efforts to keep himself in the news, the degree controversy refuses to die down, but this one not quite to the liking of the Premier. This Thursday, when the matter came up for hearing at the Delhi High Court, after a gap of nearly seven months when the case was filed, the University came up with newer records in its lethargy in legal proceedings. According to the news report by The Wire which surfaced last night, the University, which in April 2017 was asked to file a rejoinder to a reply by the petitioner Neeraj within four weeks, first tried to get another extension by claiming that the no objection certificate for adjournment had been signed by the petitioner’s lawyer. It then pleaded that it could not find time to file a rejoinder.
The University of Delhi lawyer pleaded before the court for the case to be adjourned since the senior advocate Tushar Mehta, who was leading the case, was not present. Upon being asked why despite being provided with four weeks to file the rejoinder seven months ago it had not been filed yet, the University lawyer began pleading for additional time. The developments left Justice Vibhu Bakhru visibly perturbed and after the court assembled at 10:30 am, he kept insisting that the DU lawyer move ahead with the hearing. The court heard the matter twice after that, first at 12:30 pm and then at 2:30 pm, but each time in the absence of its senior counsel. Finally at 2:30 pm, Justice Bakhru said that he was barring DU from filing a rejoinder in the matter and listed the next hearing for February 28.
In May last year, Union Minister Arun Jaitley and had made public both the Gujarat University and DU documents. Both the Universities had validated the authenticity of the documents. What is unexplainable, however, is the way University, which ideally should have nothing to hide, has since then blocked any further attempts for further information on the subject, now attempting to adjourn the court case.
With inputs from The Wire
Feature Image Credits: PTI