SC rules student’s Fundamental Rights violated

The Supreme Court has ruled that a student’s Fundamental Rights have been violated by the authorities, including the University Grants Commission (UGC) by denying the student access to university for more than  three years, despite qualifying for the GCE Advanced Level examination by obtaining three ‘A’ passes.

The Commission was directed to admit the student to a suitable university next year.

The Supreme Court ordered the UGC to pay a legal fee of Rs. 500,000 to the petitioner student and pay the amount within six months.

The Supreme Court made this order over a petition filed by Malith Sachinthaka, a student from Tissamaharama complaining that his Rundamental Rights have been violated.

With the concurrence of Justices Murdu Fernando and Yasantha Kodagoda, Supreme Court Justice S. Thurairajah announced this Judgment on June 9.

The University Grants Commission, its Chairman, the Director General of the Labuduwa Institute of Advanced Technology, the Attorney General and five others were named as the respondents in the petition.

The petitioner stated that he had obtained 3 “A” passes at the 2018 A/L examination in the Arts Stream. According to those results, he has been elected to the fourth place in the Hambantota District and the 99th place in the all island level.

The petitioner further stated that although he had applied for admission to the Law Faculties of the Universities of Jaffna, Colombo and Peradeniya, the University Grants Commission had rejected his application.

At the hearing of the petition, the petitioner stated that the University Grants Commission rejected his application stating that he was registered for a Diploma in Tourism and Care at the National Institute of Advanced Technology, Labuduwa, Galle.

However, he stated that although he sat for the entrance examination at the Galle National Institute of Advanced Technology, he was not registered with the institute for any of the courses.

The petitioner had stated that when he went to the institution to inquire into the matter, he came to know that his name had been entered into the computer system of the relevant institution by mistake.

The petitioner had stated that although he had taken steps to inform the University Grants Commission of this, its officials had informed him that the decision taken by the Commission could not be revoked.

After considering the facts presented at the hearing of the petition, the Supreme Court delivered this Judgment.

The Bench ruled that the respondents had deprived the petitioner of his right to education for three years.

It has been decided that this case violates the fundamental rights of the petitioner student guaranteed by Article 12 (1) of the Constitution.

Attorney-at-Law Dr. Sunil Cooray appeared for the petitioner. Attorney-at-Law Thanuka Nandasiri and State Counsel Sureka Ahmed appeared for the respondents.


by dailynews sri lanka

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