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Commissioner, Lucknow Division & Ors Vs. Kumari Prem Lata Misra [1976] INSC 260 (26 October 1976)

GUPTA, A.C.

GUPTA, A.C.

CHANDRACHUD, Y.V.

GOSWAMI, P.K.

CITATION: 1977 AIR 334 1977 SCR (1) 957 1976 SCC (4) 486

ACT:

U.P. Intermediate Education Act, 1921,--Whether the basic section of a college is within the scope of.

HEADNOTE:

The respondent, an assistant teacher in the basic section of the Colvin Taluqdar's college, Lucknow, was suspended and then removed from service, by the managing committee of the college. She flied a writ petition in the High Court challenging her dismissal order, contending that it violated the regulations framed under the (U.P.) Intermediate Education Act, 1921. The appellants contended that the college was running the basic Section independently and without any affiliation or grants from the Government or any local body, and that the said Act did not apply.

The Single Judge of the High Court dismissed the Writ petition as none of the opposite parties was a public authority. An appeal was allowed by a Division Bench of the High Court on the ground that the basic Section was an integral part of the college and was run by a Managing Committee constituted under the Intermediate Education Act.

Allowing the appeal the Court,

HELD: The provisions of the Act relate to recognized institutions; recognition is by the Board for the purpose of preparing candidates for admission to the Board's examination; Board means the Board of High School and intermediate Education. The basic section of a college cannot therefore be part of a recognised institution. It is not correct to think that since Section 16A of the Act requires a college to have a committee of management, a managing committee that looks after the affairs of the basic section of the college must also be functioning as a statutory body discharging duties under the Act and governed by the regulations framed there under. An institution by extending its operation to fields beyond that covered by the Act cannot extend the ambit of the Act to include in its sweep, these new fields of education which are. outside its scope. [959 C-G]

CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION: Civil Appeal No. 343 of 1974.

(Appeal by special leave from the Judgment and Order dated 11-9-1973 of the Allahabad High Court (Lucknow Bench) in Spl. Appeal No. 118/71).

D. Mukherjee and C.P. Lal for the appellant.

Akhtar Hussain, S.N. Prasad and D.N. Misra, for the respondent The Judgment of the Court was delivered by GUPTA, J.--Colvin Taluqdars' College in Lucknow, run by a society registered under the Societies Registration Act, imparts education at the following different stages:

(i) Pre-basic i.e., nursery classes.

(ii) Junior basic, called primary stage, from class I to V. (iii) Senior basic i.e., Junior high school stage from class VI to VIII, and 958 (iv) Higher secondary stage, called high school stageclasses IX and X.

(b) Intermediate stage--Classes XI and XII In the beginning the college had no pre-basic or junior basic classes and started with class VI; classes I to V and nursery classes were opened later. The respondent was appointed an assistant teacher in the basic section of the college in 1961. Following certain incidents involving her, she was suspended on or about August 20, 1970. and ultimately her services were terminated by the managing committee of the college sometime in October 1970. She filed a writ petition in the High Court at Allahabad (Lucknow Bench) alleging inter alia that the order terminating her services was mala fide and made in violation of the regulations framed under the (U.P.) Intermediate Education Act, 1921. She asked for a writ of certiorari quashing the order of suspension and the order terminating her services, and a writ of mandamus directing the opposite parties to pay the full salary and emoluments due to her. The president of the managing committee of the college, the principal, the head mistress of the basic section and the committee of management were impleaded as opposite parties 1, 2, 3, and 4 respectively. The writ petition was dismissed by a single Judge of the High Court on a preliminary ground that none of the opposite parties was a public authority and the impugned orders suspending her and terminating her services were not made in the exercise of any statutory function.

On appeal a Division Bench of the High Court took the view that the basic section of the college was an integral part of the college and held that the managing committee of the college was a statutory body constituted under the Intermediate Education Act and governed by the regulations framed there under. The Division Bench therefore found the writ petition maintainable and remanded the case to the single Judge to be decided on merits.

The Intermediate Education Act, 1921, as its long title-shows, is an Act for the establishment of a Board of High School and Intermediate Education. The preamble says that it was enacted because it was expedient to establish a Board to take the place of the Allahabad University in regulating and supervising the system of High school and Intermediate education in the United Provinces, and to prescribe courses therefore. Section 2 of the Act defines, among other terms, Board. Institution, and Recognition.

Board means the Board of High School and Intermediate Education. Institution means the whole of an institution or a part thereof, as the case may be. Recognition means recognition for the purpose of preparing candidates for admission to the Board's examination. Admittedly, Colvin Taluqdars' College is a recognised institution. Section 7 which defines the powers of the Board, after enumerating certain specific powers, states that the Board will have the power "to do all such other acts and things as may be requisite in order to further the objects of the Board as a body constituted for regulating and supervising High School and Intermediate Education". The powers mentioned in section 7 all relate to High school and Intermediate classes. Section 16-A lays down that for every recognised institution there shall be a scheme of administration which must provide, among other matters, for the constitution of a committee of management.

Section 16-B and section 16-C deal with the preparation of the scheme of administration. Section 16-D authorises the Director of Uttar Pradesh to cause inspection of a recognized institution from time to time and order the removal of any defect found on inspection. Sections 16E, 16F and 16G provide for the qualifications and the conditions of service of the teachers Of a recognized institution. Thus all these sections are confined in their application to recognized institutions only. Regulations have been framed under the Act in respect of matters covered by section 16-A to section 16-G. Regulations 31 to 45 in Chapter III of the Regulations deal with the subject of punishment, enquiry and suspension of the employees of a recognized institution.

It is said that the suspension and dismissal of the respondent was not in accordance with these regulations.

It seems clear from the provisions set out above that they all relate to recognized institutions; recognition is by the Board for the purpose of preparing candidates for admission to the Board's examination, and Board means the Board of High School and Intermediate Education. The basic section of a school cannot therefore be part of a recognized institution. We are unable to agree with the view taken by the Division Bench of the High Court that the basic section is an integral part of the institution and therefore must be governed by the provisions of the Intermediate Education Act, 1921. A school by extending its operation to fields beyond that covered by the Act cannot extend the ambit of the Act to include in its sweep these new fields of education which are outside its scope. The case of the appellants on this point appears from the counter-affidavit filed by them in answer to the writ petition. It is said that "the college is running the Basic Section independently and is neither registered by the Government nor affiliated by any local body-and neither any grant in aid is being taken by the department to run this section accordingly.

The college has its own rules and regulations to conduct the Basic Section." It is not correct to think that since the college has to have a committee of management as required by section 16-A, a managing committee that looks after the affairs of the Basic Section of the college must also be functioning as a statutory body discharging duties under the Intermediate Education Act and governed by the Regulations framed there under. The Division Bench sought support for the view it had taken from some provisions in the Educational Code of Uttar Pradesh but, as pointed by the learned single Judge, the Code is only a compilation of the various administrative rules and orders relating to educational institutions in the State and has no statutory force. For the reasons stated above, it must be held that the appellants were not discharging any statutory function in making the impugned orders affecting the respondent. The appeal is accordingly allowed, the Judgment of the Division Bench is set aside and that of the Single Judge restored. There will be no order as to costs.

M.R. Appeal allowed.

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