No relief for engg student for cancelling seat: Bombay HC

The Bombay High court has refused to grant relief to a student who had sought refund of fees amounting to Rs 92,000, along with interest, from KC College of Engineering.

Mumbai: The Bombay High court has refused to grant relief to a student who had sought refund of fees amounting to Rs 92,000, along with interest, from K C College of Engineering in nearby Thane district, for cancellation of his seat in Computer Engineering degree course in 2010.

Amit Vaidya had cancelled his seat in the college as he secured admission elsewhere in his preferred college. As he was denied refund of fees, he moved the High Court.

"In this case, as a result of withdrawal by petitioner from the admission allotted, the seat would remain vacant for a period of four years. Hence, no case for interference is made out and the petition is hereby dismissed," Justice D Y Chandrachud and Justice R D Dhanuka observed recently.

The judges noted that the rules which have been framed by Directorate of Technical Education provide for a refund of tuition fees in certain eventualities.

"Insofar as is material, the rules stipulate that no refund of fees except for security of deposit can be granted where a request for cancellation of admission is received before or after the start of academic session and the seat cannot be filled by the institute," the judges said.

In the present case, the college filed an affidavit stating that the seat which is allotted to the petitioner could not be filled upon after he vacated the seat.
"The petitioner, as the facts will show, withdrew from the seat at 3.40pm on the cut off date which was September 15, 2010. Since the seat has remained vacant, a refund of fees is not envisaged under the rules," the judges ruled.

The college stated that during a hearing before All
India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), when the grievance of the petitioner was taken up, it had offered on humanitarian grounds a refund of 25 per cent fees which the student refused to accept.

"Be that as it may, having regard to clear provisions which have been made in the rules, no case for the grant of a refund has been made out. The rules seek to balance on one hand the refund of tuition fees to students who obtain more preferential allotments with the rights of managements," the judges observed.

The student had sought admission in the college for a degree course in Computer Engineering. The course commenced on August 25, 2010. The third round of centralised admission process took place on September 2, 2010, during the course of which the petitioner was allotted a seat in the College. He paid Rs 92,000 as fees.

On September 13, 2010, the college intimated 9 vacancies during the centralised admissions process. Two days later, in the course of the fourth round, an allotment towards the 9 vacancies came to be made to the college.

On September 15, 2010, however, at 3.40 pm, the petitioner cancelled his admission with the college since he was allotted the choice of a preferred college other than the respondent. Having taken admission elsewhere, the petitioner sought a refund of fees paid to the respondent college.

The judges, however, held that under the stipulated rules the student was not entitled to any refund as the seat had remained vacant.