Supreme Court: In a case where the Niji Vyavasayik Shikshan Sanstha (Pravesh Ka Viniyaman Avam Shulk Ka Nirdharan) Adhiniyam, 2007′, the Admissions Rules, 2008 and the Madhya Pradesh Private Medical and Dental Post Graduate Courses Entrance Examination Rules, 2009, that regulate the admission of students in post graduate courses in private professional educational institutions and deal with fixation of fee and reservation of seats, the Court held that education is treated as a noble ‘occupation’ on ‘no profit no loss’ basis. Thus, those who establish and are managing the educational institutions are not expected to indulge in profiteering or commercialise this noble activity.
The constitutional bench comprising of Anil R Dave, Dr. A K Sikri, R K Agrawal, Adarsh K Goel and R Banumathi, JJ held that though the right to establish and administer an institution includes the right to admit students and to set up a reasonable fee structure, fixing of rigid fee structure, dictating the formation and composition of a governing body, compulsory nomination of teachers and staff for appointment or nominating students for admissions would be unacceptable restrictions. The State can forbid charging of capitation fee and profiteering. The object of setting up educational institution is not to make profit. There could, however, be a reasonable revenue surplus for development of education. Hence, it was held that the unitary CET will tackle the capitation fee and bring about transparency.
Holding that for admission, merit must play an important role, the Court held that such merit should be determined either by the marks that students obtained at qualifying examination or at the CET conducted by the institutions or in the case of professional colleges, by Government Agencies.
Considering the corruption in the MCI, the Court constituted and Oversight Committee to oversee the functioning of the MCI consisting of the following members:
- Justice R.M. Lodha, former Chief Justice of India
- (Dr.) Shiv Sareen, Director, Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences
- Shri Vinod Rai, former Comptroller & Auditor General of India
It was hence said that to achieve fulfillment of twin objectives of transparency and merit the State is permitted to provide a procedure of holding a CET in the interest of securing fair and merit based admissions and preventing maladministration. [Modern Dental College and Research Centre v. State of Madhya Pradesh, 2016 SCC OnLine SC 373, decided on 02.05.2016]