JAI BAHADUR SINGH Vs. UNIVERSITY OF RAJASTHAN
LAWS(RAJ)-1952-9-14
HIGH COURT OF RAJASTHAN
Decided on September 02,1952

JAI BAHADUR SINGH Appellant
VERSUS
UNIVERSITY OF RAJASTHAN Respondents

JUDGEMENT

Ranawat, J. - (1.)THIS is an application by one Jai Bahadur Singh under Art. 226 of the Constitution of India.
(2.)IT has been stated by the applicant that he is a student of law studying in the LL. B. (Final) in the Law College at Jaipur, which is affiliated to the University of Rajputana, and that during the academic year of 1951-52 in all 383 lectures were delivered by the College, out of which the applicant attended 258 lectures, which works out at 67% of the total number of the lectures delivered. The attendance of the applicant was short by less than 10%, and was within the condonable limit prescribed by Ordinance 145 passed by the University of Rajputana. His case was referred to the Vice-Chancellor of the University by the Principal of the Law College on two occasions, firstly, on the 14th of April, 1952, and then on the 16th of the same month, but the Vice-Chancellor, without referring the case to the Syndicate, refused permission to the applicant to appear at Examination held in the year 1952 saying that the attendance of the applicant was not within the condonable limit prescribed by the rules of the University. The calculations made by the authorities in this case were done separately in each paper, and according to rules, it is said, the authorities should have calculated the attendance in aggregate. In the paper of Mahomedan Law, in all 73 lectures were delivered, out of which the applicant attended only 42. IT is further stated that from the 3rd of April, 1952, upto the 14th of April, 1952, extra lectures were delivered in the College on the subject of Mahomedan Law, which were attended by the applicant, and if these lectures are taken to be at the rate of four lectures per day for six days, the total number of lectures would work out at the figure of 24. If this number is taken into account, the attendance of the applicant would not be found short beyond the condonable limit. IT is urged that under Ordinance 145, it was the duty of the Vice-Chancellor to refer the matter to the Syndicate, and it was not within the scope of the powers of the Vice-Chancellor to turn down the reference made by the Principal for condoning the shortage in the percentage. IT is prayed that a writ or direction be issued to the University of Rajputana directing them to refer the matter to the Syndicate, and to arrange to hold an Examination in law for the applicant immediately.
A reply has been filed by the opposite party, and it has been stated that according to the rules, calculation of the percentage has to be done separately in each subject. The attendance of the applicant in Mahomedan Law was short by more than 10%, and his case could not be referred to the Syndicate by the Vice-Chancellor, as the case was not within the scope of powers of the Syndicate. It is further added that no lectures were delivered between the 3rd and 14th April 1952, and even if it be taken that any lectures were delivered during these days on the subject of Mahomedan Law, taking each day to consist of one lecture, six lectures would be deemed to have been attended by the applicant. If this number is added to the credit of the applicant, the case would not come within the condonable limits, and as such there was no occasion for the Vice-Chancellor to refer the matter to the Syndicate.

The point involved in this case is whether attendance of the students in Law College has to be calculated separately in each subject or in aggregate to qualify them to sit at the Examinations. We are referred to Ordinance 143, which lays down that - "every candidate for an examination of the University shall except when exempted by any of the Ordinances, be enrolled as a member of an affiliated college before entering upon the course prescribed for such examination and should have undergone a regular course of study at that college. " The expression "a regular course of study" has further been defined by Ordinance 144, which lays down that - "the expression 'a regular course of study' means attendance at atleast (a) 75 per cent of the lectures delivered and (b) 75 per cent of the tutorials and practicals (taken together) done in an affiliated college in the subject or subjects for the examination at which a candidate intends to appear. " The applicant wants to read 75% of the lectures delivered, by itself, and it is contended that the words "in the subject or subjects for the examination" appearing later in the same sentence are not intended to qualify 75% of the lectures delivered. On the other hand, it is argued by Mr. Bhandari that the words "in the subject or subjects" appearing subsequently in the same sentence should be read with "75% of the lectures delivered", and in this way "regular course of study" would be taken to mean attendance of at least 75% of lectures in each subject separately.

We nave carefully considered the arguments of both the sides on this point. The question at issue relates to the interpretation of Ordinance 144. In our opinion, the words "in the subject or subjects" qualify both "75% of the lectures delivered" and "75% of the tutorials and practicals done. " It cannot be held that the words "in an affiliated college" were intended to qualify only "75 per cent of the tutorials and practicals done," and were not intended to qualify "75 per cent of the lectures delivered. " If such an interpretation is put, there will be no check on the delivery of lectures. The lectures may be delivered at any place, and it would be difficult to consider such lectures towards the attendance of a student. The intention of Ordinance 144 appears to be very clear that 75 per cent of the lectures delivered in an affiliated college were to be taken into account, and the words appearing thereafter, viz. , "in the subject or subjects for the examination" would similarly qualify both "75 per cent of the lectures delivered" and "75 percent of the tutorials and practicals done. " A further argument was addressed to us by Mr. Gupta, which was based on the explanation appearing in Ordinance 144 regarding Faculty of Medicine and Faculty of Engineering. In the case of the Faculty of Medicine, the minimum attendance at the practicals and clini-cals separately in each subject is to be 85 per cent. Similarly, in the Faculty of Engineering, the minimum attendance both at the lectures and at the practicals separately, in each subject, is to be 85 per cent. It is argued that because in both these branches attendance was to be taken separately in each subject, it was specifically stated in the explanation. This argument, in our opinion, does not help the case of the applicant, and this may be interpreted also in favour of the case of the opposite party. There is no explanation why in the Faculties of Medicine and Engineering attendance should be calculated separately in each subject, and it should not be so in other branches. As has been already discussed above, in the language of the body of Ordinance 144 reference has been made for the calculation of attendance of a candidate separately in each subject, and the same principle has been followed in the case of the Faculties of Medicine and Engineering. But a higher percentage of attendance has been required in those branches. That is why an explanation had to be added for those special courses of study.

A further argument has been advanced by Mr. Gupta, and it has been argued that under Ordinance 145, the principal has been authorised to condone shortage in the attendance of a candidate to the extent of 3% of the total number of lectures delivered, and a case has to be referred to the Syndicate if the attendance is short by any number within 10% of the total number of lectures delivered. He has also tried to read the words "in each subject" appearing in Ordinance 145 with the words "practicals and tutorials done," and he does not want to read the words "in each subject" with the words "lectures delivered. " This argument is similar to the one which has been discussed in connection with the language of Ordinance 144. We need not repeat our discussion, but it would suffice to say that in our opinion the words "in each subject" qualify both the "lectures delivered" and "practicals and tutorials done. " There is a comma appearing after the words " (taken together)" but there is no occasion for a punctuation at the place where it has been put. If any punctuation was necessary, it should have been put after the word "done. " In that case, there would have been a meaning of the punctuation, otherwise if the comma is taken to remain where it is printed, it has no meaning whatsoever. The calculation of the attendance of a candidate should be, according to our interpretation, done separately in each subject.

The next question which crops up related to the meaning of the term "subject" in this context. Mr. Gupta has referred to Ordinance 48 in Chapter XV of the Hand Book of the University of Rajputana, where the subjects and degrees assigned to the Faculty of Law have been specified. There, four subjects have been given. If subjects are taken for the purposes of this application to be what has been specified in Ordinance 48, it is said that the case of the applicant would fall within condonable limits. In this connection it is pleaded that attendance in Mahomedan Law shall have to be calculated along with the attendance in other papers regarding Hindu Law, Transfer of Property etc. Mr. Bhandari, who appeared on behalf of the opposite side, referred to Ordinance 256, wherein it has been laid down that every candidate for the examination for the degree of Bachelor of Laws shall present himself for examination in the subjects mentioned therein. Seven subjects have thereafter been described, and Mahomedan Law with the statutory modifications thereof has been stated to be one of the subjects. If "subjects" in the meaning of Ordinance 144 and 145 is to be taken to be as described in Ordinance 256, Mahomedan Law would be regarded as a separate subject. But if "subjects" is to be taken as described in Ordinance 48, Mahomedan Law shall have to be taken as part of the subject "substantive Private Law in force in India. " Ordinance 48 refers to the cases of assignment of the subjects to the Faculty of Law, and Ordinance 256 relates to a description of the subjects which each candidate has to offer for the examination. For purposes of the calculation of attendance Ordinance 256 appears to be relevant, because in this case there is no connection with the question of assignment of subjects to the Faculty of Law, but a candidate has to take the subjects therein described. In our opinion, the meaning of "subject or subjects" in the text of Ordinances 144 and 145 shall have to be taken * as specified in Ordinance 256, and in this view of the question, counting of the attendance of a candidate in each subject, as given in Ordinance 256, shall have to be done. The opposite party was, therefore, not wrong in calculating the attendance of the applicant separately in each subject, as read in the light of Ordinance 256.

The next point, which arises, is that taking the attendance of the applicant separately in each subject, whether his case would fall within the condonable limits, or otherwise. It is stated that he attended a few lectures in Mahomedan Law from the 1st to the 14th of April. The case of the opposite party is that the College was closed from the 1st of April, and there were no lectures arranged by the College. The applicant has summoned a copy book kept by the Principal relating to the attendance of a few students from 1st April, to the 14th April. We have examined the copy book submitted by the Principal along with an explanatory note in which he has stated that no lectures were delivered on any subject during the period from 1st to 14th April, 1952, but in order to help the students, he asked a few students including the petitioner to attend the College for two hours, and to study law so that their cases might be looked into sympathetically by the Principal in the matter of condoning the shortage in their attendance. In view of the reply of the Principal, it cannot be held that any lectures were delivered in the College from the 1st to the 14th April. But in any case even if the case of the applicant is taken to be correct, his case would not come within the condonable limits. The applicant states to have attended the College for six working days, and it is said that Mr. Verma, a Profeseor of the Law College, delivered lectures on Mahomedan Law for two hours on each day. The Applicant wants that these six lectures should be multiplied by four, and the number of lectures should be taken to be 24. But this ingenious argument does not appeal to us. No time limit can be fixed for a lecture which may extend to two hours or it may extend to any other period of time. If Mr. Verma delivered a lecture for two hours each day, it shall have to be computed as one lecture, and it would not be proper to take this lecture to consist of four lectures. In the copy book which has been produced by the Principal, there is nothing to show that there were four lectures on each day. The attendance marked therein is for each day, and it does not say that each day consisted of four lectures. We are, therefore, not prepared to accept the argument of the applicant that each lecture should be deemed to be equivalent to four lectures. If these six lectures are added to the lectures already delivered in Mahomedan Law, the case of the applicant would not come within the condonable limits. It would, therefore, not make any difference if these six lectures are counted or they are ignored. The applicant has not been able to show that his case comes within the condonable limits, and it is, therefore, not open to him to claim the issue of a writ in his favour for sending his case to the Syndicate. The authorities concerned were not wrong in not condoning the shortage in attendance of the applicant, because according to the rules of the University, his case did not fall within the condonable limits.

There is no force in this application, and it is therefore, dismissed with costs including counsel's fee amounting to Rs. 30/ -. .



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