In the case, the principals appointed in 18 colleges are expected to prove their eligibility for the post.
Mumbai: The Bombay High Court has instructed Mumbai University and the higher and technical education department to investigate the appointment of principals that the petitioner alleged was done without due process of selection by private managements. The Maharashtra Under Privilege Teachers Association (MUPTA), a group of teachers had invoked writ of quo warranto in a PIL questioning the qualification of the principals appointed by the managements in violation of procedure.
A division bench of Chief Justice Dr Manjula Chellur and Justice G.S. Kulkarni was hearing a plea filed by MUPTA wherein they had alleged that out of the 59 colleges run by private managements across the state, 18 had appointed principals by adopting an illegal procedure wherein the natural selection process was not followed thus putting the eligible teachers at a disadvantage.
The petition said that MUPTA had approached the authorities concerned detailing their grievances and the “illegal” procedure adopted for the selection of principals in different colleges; however, as it had not received any response from the authorities despite an order from the commissioner, Right to Information, they approached the court.
After hearing the petition, the bench directed the petitioner to approach the university concerned and higher and technical education department and to make a detailed representation with regard to the 18 posts. The bench also directed the university to have a hearing of the principals selected to the post and asked the university as well as the department to decide on the same within four weeks.
The court clarified that while service matters could not be decided through PILs, this PIL was entertained as “it was with regard to writ of quo warranto wherein challenge is made with regard to qualification of person who is appointed to a particular post...”
What is quo waranto?
It is a prerogative writ requiring the person to whom it is directed to show what authority they have for exercising some right or power (or ‘franchise’) they claim to hold. In the case, the principals appointed in 18 colleges are expected to prove their eligibility for the post.