Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Jain College Wins Minority Case in Haryana

INVC,,Chandigarh,  A Division Bench of the Punjab & Haryana High Court has upheld that since the Jain Community is a minority community in Haryana, therefore the Haryana Government cannot interfere in the internal working of the educational institutions run by it even if these institutions receive 95% grant-in-aid from the government. While dismissing an appeal filed by the Haryana Government, the Division Bench upheld the order passed by a Single Judge, whereby he had allowed the writ petition filed by Atma Nand Jain College Ambala against the instructions issued by the government regarding the composition and functioning of the managing committee of the college.

Chief Justice Mr. Ranjan Gogoi and Mr. Justice A.G. Masih constituted the bench.

Mr. Randhir Singh, Addl. AG Haryana had argued that it is within the jurisdiction of the Haryana Government to issue instructions about the proper constitution and working of the Managing Committee of the College and such instructions do not violate the provisions of law.

Mr. Satya Pal Jain, Senior Advocate with Mr. Dheeraj Jain, Counsel for Atma Nand Jain College Ambala, had argued that since Jain Community has been accepted as a religious minority in Haryana, the Government cannot impose any unreasonable conditions in the internal management of the college run by it, as the same would be in violation of Article 29 and 30 of the constitution of India.

The bench held, “That the respondent-College is a minority institution is not disputed before the Court. The agreement between the parties on the said issue severely truncates the dimensions of the conflict between the parties in view of the law that has crystallized over the years in respect of minority institutions and the extent of governmental control over such institutions. The decisions of the Apex Court lay down the law which in substance is that there can be no governmental control over the affairs of a minority institution established under Article 30 of the Constitution.”

“Insofar as the main features of the directions contained in Sr. Nos. (i) to (vi), which are also being extracted below, not much persuasion will be required to accept the position that by the said directions the appellant State has virtually attempted to decide on the composition of the governing body as well as its tenure and had also made the decisions of the governing body subject to the scrutiny, control and approval of the Government/University.”

“We have no doubt in our minds that the aforesaid directions issued are clearly contrary to the principles of law as enunciated by the Apex Court in the several cases reference to which has been made in T. Jose’s case (supra). The same are, therefore, ex facie not tenable.”

“In view of the above, we do not find any merit in the appeal. Accordingly, we dismiss the same and affirm the judgment passed by the learned Single Judge.”

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