BENGALURU: A petition filed by the Kanachur Islamic Education Trust in the High Court, pleading it to direct the State Government to only allot MBBS seats to Sunni Muslim students for the first-year course in its medical college was dismissed on Wednesday. While dismissing the petition, a division bench comprising Justice A S Bopanna and Justice Mohammad Nawaz said: “If this is allowed in every such minority institution, the entire process of admission would be affected.”
The petition was filed by the trust and college situated near Mangaluru, against the order passed by Medical Education Department on July 4, which had rejected the request. In its letter to the department last May, the Trust had requested to allot 82 seats for students of Sunni Muslim community out of 150 seats under the institutional quota seats for first-year MBBS course.
The court said that if a candidate belonging to Muslim community but not of Sunni sect is ranked above a candidate belonging to Sunni sect in order of merit then such candidate cannot be denied the seat. The college cannot prefer a candidate who is lower in merit but belongs to Sunni sect. Court’s denial of such claim by the petitioners, in our view, does not affect the right under Article 30(1) of the Constitution of India, the court said.
The court also said that the petitioners, in their supplemental Trust deed dated August 1, 2015, have said “to establish run and administer educational institutions primarily for the benefit of Muslim community and also society at large.” Therefore, the trust is primarily for the benefit of the Muslim community as a whole and not only of the Sunni sect. An undertaking given by petitioners has said that not less than 66% seats shall be filled by minority students within state, to which the institution belongs, the court added. It said that the consideration relating to the petitioner institution has been on the basis of the right available to the petitioner as a Muslim minority community.