A metropolitan magistrate today moved the Delhi High Court seeking relief from Delhi University's mandatory requirement of taking two years' leave from work for pursuing PhD.
The woman judicial officer in Patiala House court submitted before a bench of Justice Manmohan that the condition of the varsity and the University Grants Commission that she should take two years' leave from her employer (Delhi High Court) to pursue PhD is arbitrary and unreasonable.
Justice Manmohan asked the university to inform the court on whether the academic council or the dean took the decision to reject the magistrate's plea to exempt her from condition of taking two years' leave.
The bench also directed that the magistrate may continue studying till her petition is decided.
Magistrate's counsel M R Shamshad told the bench that "PhD is a regular but research-based course for which imposing such conditions to a judicial officer, who wants to pursue PhD course in law related field is completely arbitrary and without any rational and reasonable nexus."
He submitted that because the topic chosen by the petitioner is "ombudsman for good governance" and it has direct link with the day-to-day function performed by the petitioner as metropolitan magistrate, she stands to gain experience for the course.
The magistrate has challenged the ordinance of the varsity which requires PhD candidates sponsored by their employers and employees in service of any other recognised institute to take study leave for two years to fulfil residency requirement of the Delhi University.
The counsel said the requirement of study leave is a "disqualifying restriction and an unreasonable infringement" of the fundamental right of equality as the ordinance puts teachers of Delhi University on a different footing not requiring them to take study leave.