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RAVINDRA SINGH versus U.P. MADHYAMIK SHIKSHA SEWA CHAYAN BOARD & ORS.

High Court of Judicature at Allahabad

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Ravindra Singh v. U.P. Madhyamik Shiksha Sewa Chayan Board & Ors. - SPECIAL APPEAL No. 256 of 2003 [2005] RD-AH 7348 (12 December 2005)

 

This is an UNCERTIFIED copy for information/reference. For authentic copy please refer to certified copy only. In case of any mistake, please bring it to the notice of Joint Registrar(Copying).

HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE OF ALLAHABAD

                                                                                    Reserved

Special Appeal No.256 of 2003

Ravindra Singh

Versus

U.P. Madhyamik Shiksha Sewa Chayan Board, Allahabad

& others

Hon'ble S.R.Alam, J

Hon'ble Vineet Saran, J

                     (Delivered by Hon'ble Vineet Saran, J.)

The dispute in this case is with regard to filling up the vacancy of Principal of a college, a post that warrants appointment of a person of high merit, integrity and ethical responsibility. A Principal belongs to the noble profession of teaching. Students and citizens look up to the teachers with reverence. The genesis of this case is the genuineness of the Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.) degree of the appellant-petitioner, issued by the Baba Sahab Bhim Rao Ambedkar Bihar University, Muzaffarpur (Bihar), (for short ''the University'), who was selected by the U.P. Secondary Education Services Selection Board, (for short ''Selection Board'), for appointment as Principal of Amrit Inter College, Rohana Mills, Muzaffarnagar, (for short ''the college').

Normally the appointment of Principal is a procedural matter, dealt with and finalised by the Selection Board. But this is not a normal case. It has a chequered history. Twice earlier the parties have gone up to the Supreme Court litigating on the issue involved in this case. Besides this, criminal proceedings have also been initiated against the appellant-petitioner for the same matter. This is practically the fourth inning of litigation between the contesting parties, for filling up the post of Principal of the college. The facts are fairly complicated, which we have endeavoured to simplify and which are briefly narrated below.

In the year 1996, the Selection Board issued an advertisement for filling up the vacancies on the post of Principals in various institutions, including that of the respondent college, which falls in the Meerut Region. In response to the said advertisement, the appellant-petitioner Ravindra Singh had also applied. On 15.4.1997, the Selection Board recommended the name of the appellant-petitioner for appointment as Principal of the college.

Challenging the vires of Rule 12(3) of the U.P. Secondary Education Service Commission Rules, 1995, a large number of writ petitions had been filed and interim orders were granted in favour of the adhoc principals of various institutions. The Respondent no.4, Dharam Pal Singh Tyagi, was functioning as adhoc principal of the college. He also filed writ petition no. 18350 of 1997 and got an interim order, as a result whereof, the appellant-petitioner could not join as the principal of the college. The bunch of writ petitions (including writ petition no. 18350 of 1997) which were connected with some Special Appeals, were all decided by a Division Bench of this court on 6.10.1998. After upholding the vires of the Rules and the Act No. 5 of 1982, the Division Bench held that  "it is left open that the Director of Education or any Deputy Director of Education nominated by him may, if the dispute is raised before him, enquire into the question as to whether the candidate recommended by the Commission in panels dated 3.8.1996, 30.8.1996 and 15.4.1997 possessed the requisite qualifications or not and if the Director, after giving reasonable opportunity of hearing, comes to the conclusion that the candidate does not possess the requisite qualifications, as prescribed under law, for the post of Principal of the Intermediate College or Head Masters of the High School, he shall refer the question to the Board with his report. The board on receipt of such report may reconsider the recommendation after due hearing to the candidate concerned and if it is found that the candidate did not possess requisite qualification, his name may be struck off from the panel and proceedings may be initiated afresh for selection of candidate". This judgment was given in the leading case of Balak Singh Kushwaha vs. State of U.P. reported in 1998 U.P.L.B.E.C. 1989. This concluded the first inning of litigation.

After the said judgment, on 15.1.1999, the District Inspector of Schools, Muzaffarnagar required the appellant-petitioner to produce the original certificates pertaining to his educational qualifications and experience. On the same having been produced, the District Inspector of Schools, on 21.1.1999, directed the Committee of Management of the respondent college to issue the appointment order in favour of the appellant-petitioner.

The second inning of litigation commenced when, challenging the aforesaid order dated 21.1.1999, Respondent no.4 Dharam Pal Singh Tyagi filed writ petition no. 3858 of 1999 on the ground that the appellant-petitioner had obtained the selection on the basis of fraud and mis-representation. Another writ petition no. 29866 of 1999 was filed by Respondent no.7 Ashok Kumar and another, challenging the said order of the District Inspector of Schools dated 21.1.1999 on similar grounds that the appellant-petitioner was not qualified for appointment as Principal and thus he should not be allowed to join.

Writ Petition no.3858 of 1999, which was filed by Respondent no.4 Dharam Pal Singh Tyagi, was disposed of by this court on 11.2.1999 with the direction that "the appointment of Ravindra Singh shall be made on the post of Principal in the college in question after his educational qualifications and certificates are verified by the Director or Deputy Director of Education".

In writ petition no. 29866 of 1999 filed by Respondent no.7 Ashok Kumar and another, an interim order was passed on 22.7.1999, directing the Director of Education to take a decision in the matter within one month.

Pursuant to the aforesaid order dated 22.7.1999, the Director of Education passed an order on 15.11.1999 permitting the appellant-petitioner to join as Principal of the respondent-college, with the condition that the same shall be subject to the decision in writ petition no. 29866 of 1999. A further condition was imposed that in case if his B.Ed. degree, on verification, was not found to be genuine, then legal action shall be taken, which shall be acceptable to him. It would thus mean that till then the Director of Education had not actually verified the genuineness of the B.Ed. degree of the appellant-petitioner. On the Committee of Management of the college still not permitting the appellant-petitioner to join as Principal, he approached the District Inspector of Schools for redressal of his grievances. Then on 26.11.1999 the District Inspector of Schools sought instructions/guidance from the Selection Board as to whether, in the circumstances, the appellant-petitioner Ravindra Singh should be given charge of Principal of the respondent-college or not.

The third inning of litigation in this matter thus began when the appellant-petitioner filed writ petition no. 3035 of 2000 challenging the aforesaid order dated 26.11.1999 passed by the District Inspector of Schools. On 25.1.2000, this Court granted an interim order and the District Inspector of Schools was directed to ensure joining of the appellant-petitioner as Principal of the respondent-college within one month. Being aggrieved by the aforesaid interim order, Respondent no.7 Ashok Kumar filed Special Appeal no. 87 of 2000, which was dismissed by a Division Bench of this Court. Consequently on 2.3.2000 an appointment order was issued by the Committee of Management of the college in favour of the appellant-petitioner, pursuant to which the appellant-petitioner joined as Principal of the college. However, vide judgment and order dated 21.8.2000, the writ petition no.3035 of 2000 was dismissed by this Court on the ground that the selection had been held by the Selection Board and it was for the Selection Board to see the genuineness of the documents filed by the appellant-petitioner and that the Director of Education has nothing to do in the matter. The Deputy Secretary of the Selection Board had been summoned by the Court to apprise the Court as to whether the documents filed by the appellant-petitioner had been found forged or not. Since the said Deputy Secretary had submitted that the Selection Board got the matter enquired into and two contrary reports had come, thus holding that it was not possible to come to a conclusion as to whether the certificates filed by the appellant-petitioner were genuine or not, this Court dismissed the writ petition with the observation that "in view of the statement of the Deputy Secretary of Chayan (Selection) Board, disputed question of fact has arisen which cannot be gone into under Article 226 of the Constitution of India".

Being aggrieved by the dismissal of writ petition no. 3035 of 2000, the appellant-petitioner filed Special Appeal no.560 of 2000 which was also dismissed on 14.9.2000 with the observation that "since disputed questions of facts are involved, the only course open for the writ-petitioner is to file a suit to establish the genuineness of the document which was found to be forged by the concerned authorities." The Apex Court also dismissed the Special Leave Petition filed against the said order on 4.12.2000.

Meanwhile, on 29.8.2000, the Selection Board had written to the District Inspector of Schools, Muzaffarnagar that in view of the judgment dated 21.8.2000 in writ petition no. 3035 of 2000, till the enquiry was concluded, the matter may be kept in abeyance and the appellant-petitioner should not be allowed to work as Principal.

It may be note worthy that during the aforesaid period, when the litigation was going on between the parties, on 18.3.1999, a first information report was lodged against the appellant-petitioner Ravindra Singh at P.S. Kotwali, Muzaffarnagar which was registered as case crime no.145 of 1999 under sections 420, 467, 468, 471 I.P.C. This case also relates to the genuineness of the B.Ed. degree of the appellant-petitioner. In the said matter the Senior Superintendent of Police, Muzaffarnagar enquired from the Registrar of Baba Sahab Bhim Rao Ambedkar Bihar University, Muzaffarpur regarding the genuineness of B.Ed. degree produced by the appellant, to which the Registrar of the University on 27.3.2000 informed that the appellant was not registered with the University and that the registration no.11967/77, which was alleged to be that of the appellant, was the registration number of one Bimal Kumar Prasad Singh of Ram Dayalu Singh College, Muzaffarpur and not of the appellant. After the police received the aforesaid information, on 17.5.2000 a charge sheet was filed against the appellant before the competent court and a criminal trial is pending. However, as per the statement made by the learned counsel for the petitioner, the trial of the criminal case has been stayed by the High Court.

It is pertinent to note that despite the observation of the Division Bench of this Court in Special Appeal no. 506 of 2000, that the only course open to the appellant-petitioner is to file a suit to establish the genuineness of his B.Ed. degree, no such declaration with regard to the genuineness of his B.Ed. degree has till date been sought by the appellant from any competent court.

However, in response to the letter of the Selection Board, the Assistant Registrar (Examinations) of the University replied on 2.3.2001, certifying the genuineness of a Receipt no. 5421 issued by the University for deposit of Rs.25/= by the appellant-petitioner on 21.08.2000. Based on the aforesaid letter dated 2.3.2001, the appellant began the fourth inning of litigation by filing writ petition no. 11616 of 2001, with the following prayer:-

"issue a writ, order or direction in the nature of mandamus commanding Respondent no.1 to pass appropriate order in the matter pertaining to appointment and continuance  of the petitioner as Principal of Amrit Inter College, Rohana Mills, Muzaffarnagar taking into consideration the letter dated 2.3.2001 sent by Baba Saheb Bhim Rao Ambedkar Bihar University, Muzaffarpur."

In the writ petition, a counter affidavit had been filed by the Respondent-University annexing therewith certain documents, which were neither filed with the writ petition nor any details of the same were given. The details of some relevant documents filed with the counter affidavit are given below:

The Assistant Registrar (Examinations) of the University wrote to the Senior Superintendent of Police, Muzaffarnagar on 27.3.2000 that "on verification of the University records one Bimal Kumar Prasad Singh of Ram Dayalu Singh College, Muzaffarpur has been registered against registration no. 11967/1977.

"The name of Ravindra Singh is not recorded in the registration records, as a registered student from Vidya Bhawan B.Ed. Maha Vidyalaya, Siswan.

"It appears that Ravindra Singh obtained his original Degree from the University on the basis of manipulated proof of his registration as student of the college concerned as submitted by him for obtaining degree."

From the photocopy of the mark sheet which has been filed, it is clear that the same is not the original, but a duplicate mark sheet, bearing number 1336 in which the name of the petitioner has been shown as Rabindra Singh with roll number B-227 and registration number 11967/1977 for the B.Ed. examination 1978 held in July, 1978.

In response to a communication dated 14.9.2000 sent by the Selection Board to the Bihar University, the Assistant Registrar (Examinations), on 20.9.2000, wrote to the Selection Board that "this is to certify that Rabindra Singh was issued degree no. 06503 as verified from the records.

"However, since his registration as a student of this University is under cloud, the genuineness of Degree bearing no. 06503 and Mark sheet No.1336 issued to Rabindra Singh is subject to decision of Cr. case No.145/99, Muzaffarnagar P.S. (U.P.)."

Then again on 7.2.2001 the Selection Board wrote to the Bihar University enquiring about the genuineness of the receipt no. 5421 dated 21.8.2000. In response, the Assistant Registrar (Examinations) of Bihar University wrote to the Selection Board on 2.3.2001 that "I am directed to further inform you that Registration Receipt no.5421 have been verified and found genuine and were issued by this University in the name of Rabindra Singh."  

From perusal of a photocopy of the said receipt that has been filed, it is evident that the same is only a duplicate of the original. It merely shows that Rabindra Singh had, on 21.8.2000, deposited Rs.25/- and his registration number was 21956 of 1977.

During the pendency of the said writ petition, on 15.5.2001, the Selection Board passed an order in favour of the appellant-petitioner directing the District Inspector of Schools to permit the appellant-petitioner to join his duties as Principal. In response, on 23.5.2001 the District Inspector of Schools passed an order directing the Committee of Management to permit the appellant-petitioner to function as Principal of the college. However, based on fresh instructions received from the Selection Board on 1.6.2001, the District Inspector of Schools again passed an order on 2.6.2001, staying the operation of his earlier order dated 23.5.2001. On 7.6.2001 the Selection Board also passed an order canceling its earlier order dated 15.5.2001. The aforesaid facts were brought on record before the writ court by way of filing a supplementary affidavit. An amendment application was also filed but the same was neither allowed nor any amendment incorporated in the writ petition. However, an impleadment application filed by the appellant-petitioner to implead Baba Saheb Bhim Rao Ambedkar Bihar University, Muzaffarnagar through its Registrar as well as Assistant Registrar (Examinations) as respondents was allowed on 9.5.2002 and the said authorities were impleaded as Respondent nos. 5 and 6 to the writ petition. Ashok Kumar filed an application for being impleaded as a respondent in the writ petition, which was allowed on 24.1.2003 and he was impleaded as Respondent no.7.

After hearing the parties, the said writ petition no. 11616 of 2001 was dismissed by the learned Single Judge on 4.4.2003, on the principle of constructive res judicata, holding that the appellant-petitioner had failed to establish his right to be appointed on the post of Principal in view of the earlier decision of this Court in which the matter was affirmed by the Apex Court.

Being aggrieved by the said judgment and order dated 4.4.2003, the appellant-petitioner filed the present Special Appeal no. 256 of 2003. On 14.11.2003 a Division Bench of this Court dismissed the Special Appeal and upheld the order of the learned Single Judge holding that no writ of mandamus, as prayed by the appellant-petitioner, could have been granted in favour of the petitioner as the principles of constructive res judicata would definitely come in the way of the petitioner.

The appellant-petitioner challenged the judgment dated 14.11.2003 passed by the Division Bench of this Court by filing Special Leave Petition no. 23856 of 2003 before the Supreme Court. On a statement made by the learned Senior counsel appearing for the appellant-petitioner before the Apex Court that the petitioner intends to file a review petition and he, therefore, sought leave of the Court to withdraw the Special Leave Petition, the same was dismissed as withdrawn on 6.1.2004. Consequently, the appellant-petitioner filed an application for reviewing the Judgment and Order dated 14.11.2003 passed in Special Appeal No. 256 of 2003.

By order dated 25.2.2005, the review application was allowed and the Judgment and Order dated 14.11.2003 was recalled by the following order:-

"This is an application to review this Court's judgment and order dated 14.11.2003 dismissing the special appeal on the ground of principles of constructive res judicata.

Sri R.N.Singh, learned Senior counsel appearing on behalf of the appellant-applicant vehemently contended that the writ petition of the appellant-applicant was dismissed by the learned Single judge vide order dated 4.4.2003 on the ground of constructive res judicata and in the appeal it was specifically urged at the time of argument that the question of res judicata does not arise as the 2nd certificate, which was verified and certified by the Bihar University, was never the subject matter of the earlier writ petition. He further submitted that the reliance placed by the learned Single Judge on the judgment of the Hon'ble Apex court rendered in the case of Shree Narayana Dharmasanghom Trust vs. Swami Prakaasananda and others reported in (1997) 6 SCC 78 has now been overruled by the Hon'ble Apex Court in the case of Kunha Yameed and others Vs. State of Kerala and another reported in (2000) 6 Supreme Court Cases 359 and, therefore, the learned Single Judge ought not to have placed reliance on that judgment.

From a perusal of the order of the learned Single Judge of this court, it is apparent that the appeal and the writ petition was dismissed only on the ground of res judicata and the point involved was never adjudicated upon merit. By order dated 14.11.2003 also the appeal has been dismissed only on the ground of constructive res judicata. In our view, the appeal requires to be adjudicated on merit. We are, therefore, inclined to recall the order of this Court dated 14.11.2003 and restore the appeal to its original number.

Shri R.N.Singh, learned counsel for the appellant-applicant and Shri Suneet Kumar, learned counsel for respondents no.4 and 7 requested that the appeal may itself be decided by this Court on merit. As requested by them, list the appeal for re-hearing on 18.3.2005 at 2.00 P.M."

This court then proceeded to hear the Special Appeal on merits and also called for the record of the writ petition no. 11616 of 2001.

Since the Special Appeal was earlier dismissed without notice to all the respondents, hence on 18.3.2005 fresh notices were issued to the un-represented respondent no.3, the Committee of Management of the college. A direction was also issued to the Respondent-Bihar University to produce the original records relating to the case, which were produced by the University authorities and were taken on record.

We have heard Sri R.N.Singh, learned Senior counsel assisted by Sri G.K.Singh on behalf of the appellant-petitioner; Sri A.K.Yadav for the Selection Board, Respondent no.1; Sri R.K.Tiwari, learned Standing counsel for District Inspector of Schools, Muzaffarnagar, Respondent no.2; Sri R.K.Bhatia for the Committee of Management of the college, Respondent no.3; Sri Suneet Kumar for the contesting Respondents no. 4 and 7; and Sri S.K. Srivastava, learned counsel for Respondents no. 5 and 6, at great length over several days and have perused the record and also the original registers produced by Bihar University.

The primary contention of Sri R.N.Singh is that in view of the fact that the University authorities have, vide communication dated 2.3.2001, accepted the genuineness of the B.Ed. degree of the appellant-petitioner, then the only course left open to the Selection Board and the educational authorities is to permit the appellant-petitioner to function as the Principal of the college. The second contention of Sri Singh is that Respondent no.4, Dharam Pal Singh Tyagi, is not entitled to continue as adhoc Principal of the college as he had, along with the appellant-petitioner and others, appeared before the Selection Board and was not found fit for selection.

Sri Suneet Kumar, learned counsel appearing for the contesting respondent no.4, has, however, disputed that the B.Ed. degree of the appellant-petitioner has ever been certified by the University as genuine. He submitted that no new cause of action arose for the appellant-petitioner to again approach this Court by filing writ petition no. 11616 of 2001 on the basis of the letter dated 2.3.2001 issued by the University, which only certifies the genuineness of the receipt no. 5421 and not the B.Ed. degree of the appellant-petitioner. As regards  the second submission, it has been contended that the Respondent no.4 did neither apply nor appeared before the Selection Board for appointment as Principal of the college and thus there was no question of his rejection.

In our view, the second question raised is not directly relevant for the purposes of decision of this writ petition as no prayer has been made with regard to the same. However, we shall deal with it also, but after deciding the first question.

What is primarily to be decided is the question regarding the genuineness of the B.Ed. degree of the appellant-petitioner. For such purpose we have carefully examined the contents of the writ petition. The first 23 paragraphs of the writ petition only give the history of the case. It is only in the last few paragraphs that the fact of mere issuance of the letter dated 2.3.2001 by the University has been mentioned. However, it has not been stated as to in what context the said letter had been issued by the University. In the said letter the Assistant Registrar (Examinations) of the University has written to the Selection Board that "I am directed to further inform that the registration receipt no. 5421 have been verified and found genuine and were issued by this University in the name of Rabindra Singh". Even the receipt no.5421, which had been sent to the University for verification had not been filed by the appellant-petitioner along with the writ petition.

The counter affidavit of the University authorities filed in the writ petition has the details of various communications on record. From a perusal of the same it is clear that at the time of furnishing his certificates and other details, the appellant-petitioner had filed his B.Ed. certificate bearing registration no.11967/1977. On 27.3.2000 the University wrote to the Senior Superintendent of Police, Muzaffarnagar that the said registration number was recorded with the University in the name of Bimal Kumar Prasad Singh of Ram Dayalu Singh College, Muzaffarpur and that the name of Ravindra Singh is not recorded in the registration records of the University as a student of Vidya Bhawan B.Ed. Maha Vidyalaya, Siswa, from where the said Ravindra Singh claims to have been registered as a student. It was also mentioned by the University that it appeared that Ravindra Singh had obtained his degree from the University on the basis of manipulated proof of his registration. On 20.9.2000 the University again wrote to the Selection Board that Rabindra Singh was issued degree number 065053 but since his registration as a student of the University was under cloud, the genuineness of his degree and mark sheet would be subject to the decision of the criminal case pending at Muzaffarnagar. Then, on 7.2.2001, the Selection Board required the University to certify the genuineness of receipt number 5421 dated 21.8.2000. A perusal of the said receipt only shows that a deposit of Rs.25/- had been made by the appellant-petitioner and in the end it has been stated that his registration number was 21956 of 1977. In response to the same, the said communication dated 2.3.2001 has been made by the University to the Selection Board certifying that such a receipt had been issued by the University.

It is surprising that how a mere deposit of Rs.25/- having been made by the appellant-petitioner on 21.8.2000 would certify the genuineness of the B.Ed. degree of the appellant-petitioner which is said to have been issued more than two decades prior to the issuance of such a receipt. It is also not understood that why the petitioner withheld the material information from this court with regard to alleged change of his registration number, as had been mentioned by the University in its counter affidavit. It has also not been mentioned in the writ petition as to in what context the deposit of Rs.25/- had been made by the appellant-petitioner. It is not believable that the appellant-petitioner did not have the knowledge of these facts. Nowhere in the writ petition has it even been stated that the petitioner had ever applied for correction, amendment or change of his registration number. The University, in its counter affidavit, has also not clarified that the appellant-petitioner had made the said deposit of Rs.25/- for making such correction or change of his registration number.

We now come to the record that has been produced by Bihar University. From a perusal of the same it appears that some correction of the registration number of the appellant-petitioner had been made on 6.9.2000. In what context and on whose application such correction had been made, has not been brought on record. Even the correction made in the original records would show that over-writing on the registration number has been made to show that it is 21956/77. In case if any change or correction is made, if at all permissible under the rules, the same ought to have been done after scoring out the earlier number and correcting or amending it with the new number, but this has not been done.

It is the clear case of the respondents that registration number 11967/77 is of one Bimal Kumar Prasad Singh of Ram Dayalu Singh College, Muzaffarpur whereas the appellant-petitioner claims to have been registered with Vidya Bhawan B.Ed. Maha Vidyalaya, Siswan. The appellant-petitioner also claims to have earlier studied in D.A.V. College, Muzaffarnagar. Alongwith the supplementary affidavit filed in this special appeal, the Respondent no.4 has annexed a photo copy of the relevant page of the register of respondent-University wherein against registration number 21956, although the name of one Ravindra Singh is shown, but such person had undergone his earlier education from Krishna Inter College, Deoria and had passed his B.A. from Gorakhpur in 1975 against roll number 105830. From a perusal of the original register as produced by the respondent-University, against registration number 21956/77, the name of Ravindra Singh has been shown who had undergone his earlier education from D.A.V. College Muzaffarnagar and had passed B.A. in 2nd Division from Meerut University with roll number A-662124.

In the said register, it is in the last few pages that such registration number 21956 has been shown. Just below the said printed number, another number was printed which has been blackened out by pen and the new registration number 21956 has been stamped/printed. Such blackening of earlier printed numbers and new numbers being stamped afresh, are in the cases of all such numbers beginning from 21947 up to 22006. This register begins from registration number 21227. However, till registration number 21946, there is no second printed number and it is only from registration number 21947 onwards (which is contained in the last few pages of the register) that a second number has been printed and the earlier number blackened. Only to maintain continuity and to show that on earlier pages also second printed numbers were there, rectangular black marks have been made below such printed numbers prior to 21946 also. However, on a careful perusal of such pages of the register prior to the registration number 21946 downwards; even to the naked eye it is evident that in fact there was no second number printed beneath the blackened portion. Further, a perusal of the register also shows that it contains registration numbers 21227 to 22006. This register has been re-stitched subsequently. The last few pages starting from registration number 21947 to 22006 appear to have been added. Another important aspect is that after registration number 21979, the subsequent numbers are blank and carry no details. There is no endorsement of the register having been closed after 21979 nor is there any mention made that from 21980 to 22006 there was no student registered.

Another similar register, which contains the registration number 11967, has also been produced by the University. There is no additional stitching in the said register. The said registration number 11967 is of Bimal Kumar Prasad Singh. In that register there is also no blackening or change in the registration numbers. There are also no blank registration numbers and the last number in the register, which is 12867, is filled up with the name of a student.

Not only this, the cover page of the aforesaid register shows that the said register contains registration numbers 11674 to 12867, which are the first and last registration numbers in that register. In the earlier register, which contains registration number 21956 (in which there are also blackening of printed numbers and stamping of fresh numbers and there is separate stitching), the details of the first and the last registration numbers on the cover page of the register have been erased out.

From all these observations, a doubt is cast as to why the register in question containing registration number 21956 has been tampered with. A further doubt is created as to whether the said registration number 21956 is actually that of the appellant-petitioner or not. It is also not explained as to why and how the registration number of the appellant-petitioner was changed from 11967 to 21956 as late as on 6.9.2000, which is more than 20 years after the appellant-petitioner claims to have passed his B.Ed. examination from the respondent University. Thus, in our opinion, not much credence can be given to the Registers produced by the University and the genuineness of the B.Ed. degree of the appellant-petitioner remains doubtful. Even the respondent-University has gone on record and opined on 27.3.2000 that it appears that Ravindra Singh has obtained his degree from the University on the basis of manipulated proof of his registration. Then again on 20.9.2000 the University has mentioned that since the registration of Ravindra Singh as a student of the University was under cloud, the genuineness of his degree and mark sheet would be subject to the decision of criminal case no.145 of 1999 pending at Muzaffarnagar (U.P.). Even the Division Bench of this Court, while dismissing the Special Appeal no. 560 of 2000 on 14.9.2000 had observed that "since disputed questions of facts are involved, the only course open to writ petitioner is to file a suit to establish the genuineness of the document which was found to be forged by the concerned authorities". The appellant-petitioner has not sought a declaration from any court regarding the genuineness of his B.Ed. degree. Instead he has relied on a letter dated 2.3.2001 to show that his B.Ed. degree is genuine and that he be given appointment as Principal of the college.

As already held above, the said letter dated 2.3.2001 does not anywhere certify the genuineness of the B.Ed. degree of the appellant-petitioner but merely certifies the genuineness of a receipt number 5421 regarding deposit of Rs. 25/- having been made by the appellant-petitioner on 21.8.2000. On such basis, the prayer of the petitioner made in the writ petition for a direction in the nature of mandamus commanding the Selection Board to appoint the appellant-petitioner as Principal of the college after taking into consideration the letter dated 2.3.2001 issued by the respondent-University cannot be granted. In our view the dismissal of the writ petition by the learned Single Judge is justified, although may not be of the principle of constructive res judicata, but on the grounds as mentioned here-in-above, and accordingly this appeal also deserves to be dismissed.

Sri Suneet Kumar, learned counsel for the contesting respondent no.4, had also submitted that since the appellant-petitioner has committed fraud in obtaining selection on the post of Principal by producing a forged B.Ed. degree, thus on the principle that fraud vitiates everything, he would not be entitled to any relief from a court of law. In support of such contention, he has relied upon the following decisions: Ram Chandra Singh v. Savitri Devi (2003) 8 SCC 319; United India Insurance Co. Ltd v. Rajendra  Singh A.I.R. 2000 SC 1165; Indian Bank v. M/s Satyam Fibres AIR 1996 SC 2592; Ram Preeti Yadav v. U.P. Board of High School and Intermediate Education (2003) 8 SCC 311; Rakesh Kumar Agrawal v. State Bank of India 2003 (3) E.S.C.1333; Abubakar Abdul Inamdar (dead) by L.Rs. v. Harun Abdul Inamdar AIR 1996 SC 112; and Mohinder Singh Gill v. the Chief Election Commissioner, New Delhi (1978) 1 SCC 405. In view of the fact that we are not inclined to record any finding as to whether any fraud was committed by the appellant-petitioner or not, as the same can only be decided in a suit; because such a finding can be given only after the evidence is adduced by the parties, which cannot be done in writ jurisdiction, we are not inclined to go into the question of any fraud having been committed in this case by the appellant-petitioner.

As regards the second question raised by the appellant-petitioner that the respondent no.4 would not be entitled to continuance in office as adhoc principal because he had appeared before the Selection Board and was not found fit, we are of the opinion that the said question can best be examined by the educational authorities. Accordingly, we direct the District Inspector of Schools, Muzaffarnagar, Respondent no.2, to look into the matter as to whether Respondent no.4 Dharam Pal Singh Tyagi is eligible and competent to continue as adhoc principal or not, and if it is found that he is not eligible and competent, the next senior most teacher of the college shall be given charge of adhoc principal of the college. The decision in this regard shall be taken by the District Inspector of Schools, Muzaffarnagar, after giving adequate opportunity of hearing to the respondent no.4 as well as the college authorities, and other concerned parties, if there be any, within a period of two months from the date of filing of a certified copy of this order before him.

Subject to the aforesaid observations, this Special Appeal stands dismissed. No order as to cost.

The original records produced at the time of hearing by the learned counsel for the Bihar University are being returned to him.

Dt/- December  12, 2005

dps


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Reproduced in accordance with s52(q) of the Copyright Act 1957 (India) from judis.nic.in, indiacode.nic.in and other Indian High Court Websites

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