Puri Vs. State of Himachal Pradesh & Ors  INSC 585 (2 December 1998)
M. Jagannadha Rao.
O R D
counsel for the parties.
short question that arises for consideration in this appeal is whether a State
Government employee lent on deputation (at the request of the State Government
employee on health ground) to a department of the Central Government can be
considered as a 'serving Central Government employee" within the meaning of
the eligibility clause as provided by Himachal Pradesh University in a combined
prospectus for admission for M.B.B.S./B.D.S/B.A.M.S courses.
relevant clauses in the Prospectus read as follows ::- A bona fide Himachal is
a person who has permanent home in Himachal Pradesh and includes a person who
has been residing in Himachal Pradesh for a period not less than 15 years or a
person who has permanent home in Himachal Pradesh but on account of his
occupation he is living outside Himachal Pradesh." Eligibility - "(i)Candidates
who have compete for admission to Indira Gandhi Medical Collegae. Shimla
(M.B.B.S), Dr. Rajendra Prasad Govt. Medical College Kangra, Himachal Pradesh Government Dental College and Hospital Shimla (B.D.S.). Or
Free seats available in various Private Sental Colleges and Medical Colleges
situated in Himachal Pradesh and Rajiv Gandhi Government Ayurvedic College, Paprola
should have passed atleast two of the following examinations from the recognised
Schools or Colleges affiliated to ICSE/CBSE and HP Board of Shool Education or
equivalent Boards/University established by law in India.
bona fids Himachal students who are admitted to Navodaya Schools situated in Himachal
Pradesh and who pass Matric or +2 examination under the exchange programme from
other Navodaya Schools in the Country shall also be eligible for admission to
the above courses.
The Wards of Defence personnels/serving Central Govarment employees who are bona fide Himachalis are also exempted
from the condition of passing two classes from the Stata of Himachal
Pradesh." Stated briefly, the relevant facts of the case are as under.
appellant herein submitted his application for combined entrance test for
admission to the first year M.B.B.S. course for the year 1997-98. The third
respondent herein after a perusal of the appellant's application informed him
that he was not elialble for submitting the application inasmuch as he had not
passed two out of three examination mentioned in the eligibility clause from
the school situated in Himachal Pradesh, In fact, the appellants mother, a Himachal
Pradesh State Government employee requested for sending her on deputation to Chandigarh
Union Territory on health ground. Accordingly, she was sent on deputation to Chandigarh
Education Department since 21.12.1988. Alongwith his mother, the appellant also
moved to Chandigarh and pursued his studies there since
he could not satisfy the eligibility requirement as mentioned above. Though the
appellant initially claimed exeption under the category that he is the son of a
defence personnel, that was not pursued in view of the fact that his father was
not a bona tide Himachal The alternative claim of the appellant was that his
mother is a Himachal Pradesh State Government employee and she having been sent
on deputation to work at Chandigarh Education Department, must be treated as a
"serving Central Government employee". In that case exemption contemplated
under Clause (iii) of the eligibility clause would come to his rescue. This was
not accepted by the respondents. Though, on merits he was entitled to get
admission, he was denied admission for lack of eligibility for admission,
Aggrieved by the denial of admission to the first year M.B.S.S course, 1997,
the appellant moved the High Court for appropriate writ to enable him to pursue
the first year M.S.S.S. course.
Division Bench of the High Court rejected the contention put forward on behalf
of the appellant that the mother of the appellant comes under the category of
serving Central Glovenment employee as contemplated in Clause
(iii) of eligibility clause. The High Court observed that 'she is only a State
Government employee working on deputation with the Central Government and she
cannot be considered to be a Central Government employee.' Accordingly, the
High Court dismissed the writ petition.
by the order of the High Court, the preterit appeal by special leave has been
learned Senior Counsel appearing for the appellant placing strong reliance on a
judgment of this Court in Meenakshi Malik vs. University of Delhi & Ors. [(1989)
3 SCC 112] submitted that in the light of the ratio laid down by this Court in
the said judgment, the mother of the appellant must be deemed to be a serving
Central Government employee satisfying the requirement of Clause (iii) of
other hand, learned counsel appearing for the State of Himachal Pradesh, the
University and the private 4th respondent argued that having regard to the
scheme of the Prospectus and the intention of the eligibility clause, the claim
of the appellant that he is the son of a serving Central Government employee
who is a bona tide Himachal cannot be accepted. The learned counsel also
submitted that the judgment in Meenakshi Malik case (supra) must be lfined to
the facts of that case and the principle laid down therein cannot be pressed
into service in all cases irrespective of the facts of the case.
have considered the rival submissions. At the outset we have set out the
relevant clauses in the Prospectus. The purpose behind the clause relating to
eligibility appears to be that bona tide Himachali students should be given
preference over others. In achieving the above object care has been taken to
protect those students whose parents were obliged to move out of Himachal State on account of exigencies of service, by reason of which the
children also moved out of State. In the case on hand- it is an admitted fact
that the mother of the appellant though a State Government employee went on
deputation on her own request on health ground to work as an employee of the
Central government. In view of the fact that she has been allowed to continue
on deputation for nearly 10 years and is still maintaining her lien with the
State government can it be said that she is a Central Government employee as
contemplated in Clause (iii) of the eligibility clause. We are of the view that
such an interpretation would go against the spirit of the eligibility clause
provided in the Prospectus.
reliance placed on Meenakshi Malik case (supra) will will not help the
appellant, as this Court, in Anant Madaan vs. State of Haryana & Ors.
[(1995) 2 SCC 135] while distinguishing the observed as follows :- "11.
The appellants drew our attention to a decision of this Court in Meenakshi Malik
vs. University of Delhi where the father of the candidate was in government
service. He was posted by the Government outside India, As the parents were compelled to go outside India, the children were also required to
go with their parents. This Court considered this as a hard case. It held that
the qualifying condition that the candidate should have received the last two
years of education in a school in Delhi, should be relaxed in that case as the
candidate was compelled to leave India for a foreign country by reason of the
posting of her parents by the Government to such foreign country. The Court
observed that there was no real choice in the matter for such a student and
hence the rigour of the condition prescribing that the last two years of
education should be received in Delhi should be relaxed in that case.
None of the appellants who are before us are in a position similar to that of
the appellant in the above case.
fact, the parents of Anant Madaan, Bharat B. Dua and Shalini Jain are in Haryana.
In the case of Nandita Kalra the parents have voluntarily taken employment
outside the State of Haryana. They are not in the same situatiofore as the
parents of Meenakshi Malik. Therefore, the relaxation which was given by this
Court in the case of Meenakshi Malik cannot be given to any of the appellants
before us." (Emphasis supplied) We have already noticed that the mother of
the appellant went on deputation of her own volition and not out of compulsion
or exigencies of service.
the reliance placed by the learned Senior Counsel for the appellant on Meenakshi
Malik case (supra) is of no avail. The High Court also took the same view in
rejecting the contention put forward on behalf of the appellant.
circumstances, we do not find any merit in this appeal and the High Court was
right in dismissing the writ petition of the appellants The appeal fails and is
dismissed. No costs.