St. Stephen’s College and the University are battling again on the prospectus of admission procedure for minority students. The Delhi High Court deferred St. Stephen’s plea against the university’s notification for securing admissions solely based on CUET scores, including minority students.
On 24 May 2023, the Delhi High Court deferred St. Stephen’s College and Jesus and Mary College’s (JMC) plea insisting against Delhi University’s (DU) notification to conduct the admissions solely based on the Common University Entrance Test (CUET) test scores. The petition has been deferred to 23 August 2023, with the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Yogesh Singh stating that the admission process will go forward based on the notification issued by the University with the CUET being the sole criteria for admissions.
They can go ahead with the admission, but the university will not recognise the admission
-the Vice Chancellor said while asked about the admission prospectus of St. Stephen’s where 50% of the seats are guaranteed for minority students based on an 85% weightage to CUET and a 15% weightage to the interviews.
The bench headed by Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma was also listed for hearing on the same date when JMC filed for a similar petition. A woman named Sharon Ann George also filed a petition against the conduction of interviews for minority students for admission in addition to the interviews.
All three matters we cannot touch. There is an SLP (special leave petition). We will not touch it. The matter is pending before the apex court
-commented the bench, also comprising Justice Subramonium Prasad.
The court stated that the parties can approach the top court to redress their grievances.
It has been brought to the notice of the court that against the judgement (in cases about admission to St Stephen’s College), an SLP has been filed in the apex court. In light of the SLP, hearing of cases is deferred
-stated the court.
In the academic year of 2022-23, the university and St. Stephen’s were involved in a legal case where St. Stephen’s insisted on conducting interviews of 15% weightage for all students rather than only the minority students. However, the university permitted them to only conduct interviews for 50% of the minority students.
The high court ruled in favour of the university and issued a fresh admission prospectus instructing the colleges to admit students based on 100% CUET scores. St. Stephen’s filed a separate appeal before the Supreme Court contending that as a minority educational institution, its right to conduct the admission process can not be disrupted in any way.
The impugned decision of the University denying the petitioner College its right to conduct interviews for admission to undergraduate courses in the minority category is contrary to the judgment of this Hon’ble Court dt. 12.09.2022 in W.P. (C) No. 8814/2022 in St. Stephen’s College Vs University of Delhi which recognized the Petitioner’s right to select students of minority category by conducting interviews–the petition stated.
The petition was subsequently rejected. The apex court also directed all colleges to secure admissions for the general category based on CUET scores only. The college later conducted interviews carrying a weightage of 15% only for Christian students.
For the academic year 2023-24, the admissions will be secured solely based on CUET scores. Owing to this, the university stated that one college out of the 62 colleges can not conduct a separate admission process and a uniform procedure needs to be implemented across all colleges and student categories.
For Christian minority candidates, the college will adopt the marks secured in the CUET with 85% weightage and the college’s interview for shortlisted candidates with a weightage of 15%. This is as per and by the judgement of the division bench of the Hon’ble Delhi High Court dated 12.09.2022. The Christian minority applicant must register on St. Stephen’s College’s admissions portal as and when the registration form is ready
-stated the prospectus issued by St. Stephen’s for the conduction of the academic year 2023-24 admissions.
For the general category candidates, admission will be solely based on CUET scores. JMC is yet to take a stance on how it will proceed with the admission process.
Image Credits: Hindustan Times
Sri Sidhvi Dindi