SC: Court Cannot be an Expert in the Field of Education

In a recent Supreme Court observation, a bench of Justices MR Shah and BV Nagarathna said that in the field of education, the court of law cannot normally act as an expert, and whether a student/candidate possesses the requisite qualification is best judged by education institutions, or by expert committees.

This observation was made while dismissing appeals challenging the order of Jharkhand High Court in the selection process for appointment of PGT Teachers for different subjects. As per the original job advertisement, candidates were required to have a postgraduate/bachelor’s degree in history. The writ petitioners were candidates whose applications were not considered for selection, and since their pleas were rejected by Jharkhand HC, they had appealed to the Supreme Court.

The SC bench noted that the appellants had postgraduate/bachelor’s degrees in one of the branches of history, e.g., Ancient History, History & Culture, Medieval/Modern History, Archaeology, etc. The bench also noted that the required educational qualifications were specifically mentioned in the advertisement, and there was no ambiguity or confusion in the requirements for the post against which applications were invited. The requirement was clearly for the whole subject (History), and not for a branch of that, as the appellants’ qualifications showed.

In conclusion, the bench observed that there cannot be any deviation from the specific educational qualifications required for any position, and both the single judge and the division bench of the High Court had correctly refused to interfere with the due process. This is the basis on which the appeals were rejected by the SC Bench.

Vinod Kakumanu

Vinod Kakumanu

Founder & Consultant - School Serv

Vinod Kakumanu heads a team of school services professionals and is an independent commentator on Indian school education scenario. Vinod has assisted school promoters establish 35+ schools besides providing ancillary services to over 1000 schools across India. He envisions a future where quality education is made available to every child of the country. The focus he places on the quality of the deliverables and customer satisfaction has made him renowned in the field of K-12 school education.

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