Minority institutions couldn’t act arbitrarily: SC

The Supreme Court of India held that a minority institution could not act arbitrarily or unfairly in dealing with the selection of the eligible candidates despite their autonomy under Article 30 of the Constitution of India and the courts does have power of judicial review of such selection process.

“…..autonomy of a minority institution does not dispense with the requirement to act fairly and in a transparent manner and the High Court in exercise of its power of judicial review is entitled to examine fairness of selection process. Grievance of a citizen that he was treated unfairly cannot be ignored on the ground that a minority institution has autonomy or right of choice. Exercise of right of choice has to be fair, non-discriminatory and rational”, the Court said.

The Court further said that under the constitutional scheme, a minority institution is free to select and appoint a principal without being bound by the principle of seniority alone. Whether the appointment has been made fairly and reasonably and whether there is violation of right of an individual eligible candidate by the minority institution by not adopting fair procedure, is liable to be tested in exercise of power of judicial review of courts.

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