SADHU RAM HARDWARI LAL Vs. PRINCIPAL, RAJINDRA COLLEGE
HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA
Sadhu Ram Hardwari Lal
Principal, Rajindra College
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(1.) This is a petition under Article 226 of the Constitution.
(2.) The Petitioner, Sadhu Ram, was a scholar in the Ist year of the Intermediate class in the Rajindra College at Bhatinda. The letters addressed to the scholars of the College were censored, by the Principal; in the case of the boy scholars they were delivered to them in his pre-section and in the case of girl scholars they were opened by him before delivery. On 16-5-1953, the Principal round a letter addressed to a girl scholar of the College by a scholar of the 1st yea- in the Intermediate class and the Principal considered it rather objectionable letter. The letter is in these terms My darling Namastey. It congratulate you on your success in the first year Class. But I amja. little sorry that (you) my darling, secured low marks. Now, I can time Pay my B.C. to your parents.
Always wishing well, Yours affectionately, Sd/- S.R. Ist Year. According to the Petitioner he was called by a clerk to the College Office and asked to make over his rough note-book. His note-book was taken by the Clerk, who informed him that that was done under the orders of the Principal. Upon the enquiry of the Petitioner whether he was required to stay in the office the clerk told him that he could go. The 17th of May, 1953, was a Sun-day. The 'Petitioner says that a relation of his was Indisposed and so on 18-5-1953, he went to Rampura Phul to enquire about his health. When he returned to the College on 19-5-1953, he found . a notice on the College Notice Board saying that he had. been expelled from the College for a period' of two years for gross misconduct in writing a letter to a girl student. On the next day he saw the Principal and requested him to make an enquiry into the matter and. afford him an opportunity of showing that he was not the writer of the letter, but the Pinellas refused his request and further informed him that he had been expelled on account of absence from the College without leave. The Petitioner then gives details of his approaches to the Registrar of the Punjab University, to the Principal again, and to the Secretary to Pepsu Government in the Education Department in order to seek redress, but was unsuccessful. In the end he approached the Adviser to the Rajpramukh on 13-11-1953, with the request that the case be had examined by an hand-writing expert and that he was prepared to pay the fee of the expert. His request was accepted and the matter was placed before the hand-writing expert but he was not apprised of the opinion of the expert till the date of the present petition, which is 5-14954. The Petitioner, therefore, prays (a) that the, order of the principal expelling him from the College be quashed, and (b) (i) that the principal be directed to allow the Petitioner to continue his studies and attend lectures in the College, and (ii) that he be further directed inform the Punjab University authorities to same effect.
(3.) In the reply put in by the Advocate General on behalf the Principal, supported by the affidavit of the Principal, a slightly different version of the case has been given. It is admitted that the Principal intercepted the letter on 16-5-1953, when he read it he called the Petitioner and questioned him whether the latter was its writer. Petitioner became pale but denied having a the letter. Two leaves from his copy-were taken by the Principal in order to com-his hand-writing with the hand-writing Of the writer of the letter. The Petitioner was asked to ' weit outside the office. Sometime later when the Principal again wanted to see the Petitioner, he was not to be found.' A- peon of the College was sent to his place of residence on that very day bu-" reported back that the Petitioner was not avail able at his residence. The pe'on left a message for the Petitioner, that his presence was required; by the Principal, The Petitioner did not turn upon that day.
On 17-5-1953, the peon again went to his residence but did not find him. On the next day the Petitioner did not attend his class and was absent, On that day the Principal took counsel with four members of his staff and they examined the hand-writing of the letter and. the hand writing of the Petitioner on the two leaves that had been removed from his copy-book. They came to the conclusion that the letter had been written by the Petitioner. Thereupon the Principal decided to call a meeting of the College Staff council for 19-5-1953, at 9-10. A.M. The council duly met at the appointed time and "the Principal disclosed that investigation had established the identity of the offender as one Sadhu Ram, student of 1st year class Roll No. 68." The Council after discussion decided to expel the Petitioner for two years for gross misconduct. It is denied in the reply that the Petitioner was called by a clerk in the College Office or that he was told by the Principal on 19-5-1953, that he had been expelled because of absence.. The reply further says that on. 20-5-1953, the Petitioner, along with the representatives of the College Students Union, met the Principal, who showed the letter and the writings of the Petitioner on the leaves of his copy-book to the representatives of the College Students Union. The position of the Principal is that even those representatives were satisfied about the conclusion that had already been reached that it was the Petitioner who was the writer of the letter. It is then stated that the Petitioner was guilty of gross misconduct and was punished in the interest of college discipline, which action of the Principal was executive in nature and cannot be quashed by a writ of certiorari which is applicable to a case of a judicial or quasi-judicial nature.;
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