The Bombay High Court has directed the Maharashtra government and the University of Mumbai to take steps for providing basic amenities at a tribunal set up to hear admission and other education-related matters of the varsity and the SNDT College.
The University of Mumbai and SNDT College Tribunal has jurisdiction over the two institutions.
A division bench of Justices S M Kemkar and G S Kulkarni recently ordered the competent authority of the government and the university to hold a meeting and initiate steps for implementation of the recommendations made in a June 2017 report submitted by the deputy registrar, legal and research, of the high court.
The deputy registrars report listed recommendations on what basic amenities need to be provided to the tribunal and its presiding officer, who is a retired high court judge.
“We direct the competent authority of the state government and the competent authority of the university to convene a meeting to decide further action plan in regard to the said report,” the high court said.
The bench directed the government and the university to submit a progress report on November 14, when the petition would be heard.
The court had during the last hearing come down heavily on the government and the University for not taking prompt action on the issue, and expressed dissatisfaction at the sorry state of affairs in the university’s tribunal.
The court was hearing a public interest litigation filed by advocate Pravartak Pathak on the issue.
The tribunal was set up as a first appeal body to hear and resolve issues arising out of admission and other education matters. The jurisdiction of the tribunal covers University of Mumbai and SNDT Women’s University.
According to the PIL, the tribunal has been allotted a very small area to operate from and there is a shortage of support staff, which hampers its work.
It states that the presiding officer has not been provided with proper accommodation that meets the standards mentioned in the Government Resolution.
The car facility is also not provided to the presiding officer, the petition states.
The presiding officer has not been given proper wash room facilities and has to go to the toilet used by litigants, the petition said.