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Status-Quo Ante be maintained as on previous academic year 2019-20, “no tearing hurry” to roll out the horizontal reservation at National Law University, Delhi – Delhi High Court

The proceeding related to the move of the Delhi government to introduce 50% reservation at National Law University, Delhi (NLU-Delhi) for students who have passed their qualifying exams in the national capital.

By – Diksha Sinha 

In the case Balvinder Sangwan vs NCT of Delhi and ors., the High Court of Delhi has stayed the move to introduce 50% horizontal reservation at NLU-Delhi. The acting bench for this case was Justice Hima Kohli and Justice Subramonium Prasad. It was further advanced by the bench that the decision of reservation was in haste without acting in accordance with the NLU Delhi Act. 

The university is directed to bring out a new admission guidelines notification till 2nd July, 2020 with a further week given to the students who ought to fill the form of the entrance.

The students of NLU-Delhi had filed a petition against the introduction of 50% horizontal reservation for candidates who have cleared their qualifying examination. One of the petitioners, Pia Singh, a student of University of Rajasthan, was devastated after hearing the new criteria of reservation announced by the university. Additionally, the Delhi Government’s move was unconstitutional since the existing reservation quotas of 27% and 10% of OBC (other backward classes) and EWS (economically weaker section) respectively without increasing the number of seats, was a violation against the guidelines issued by the MHRD (Ministry of Human Resource Development).

Delhi government argued that NLU-Delhi, is an example of excellence for years, made in existence on the basis of Delhi Legislative Act and the policy reservation was in accordance of NLU-Delhi’s statute. It was, thus, protected by Article 41 (Right to work, to education and to public assistance) and other Supreme Court judgements.

The learned counsel of the petitioners, senior advocate Neeraj Kishan Kaul and advocate Nipun Saxena, argued that the Delhi Government ‘arm-twisted’ the university admin into rolling out the reservation in violation of NLU-Delhi Act.  The spur decision neglected the awaiting decision of the Committee under the chairmanship of Supreme Court’s Judge N.V Ramana.

The court reiterated that when a statute is responsible for all the decisions, then a move against the statute will be a clear violation. 

The next hearing would be taken up on 18th, August, 2020. 

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