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A Single Bench of Punjab and Haryana High Court on Wednesday observed that termination of an Assistant Professor on grounds of poor intake of students for the subject taught is not a valid ground for termination under Section 22 of First Statues of the Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University Act, 1998. (Act)

An Assistant Professor was appointed as a Senior Lecturer with the Institute. At the time of his appointment the Institute was affiliated with Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University. Later the Institute merged with another entity to form a University. The newly formed University decided to abolish his post on grounds of poor intake of students for the subject taught. Aggrieved by such decision the Professor approached the Educational Tribunal for relief. Although, as the Tribunal dismissed the Professor’s appeal he approached the High Court assailing the University’s and Tribunal’s decision on ground of not being given an opportunity of being heard.

Hon’ble Ms. Justice Jaishree Thakur acknowledged the settled position of law that an employer has the sole discretion to decide as to whether a post is to be retained or abolished but also referred to Section 22 of the Act (Short title: Removal of employees of the University) stating that the ground of termination/abolition is illegal and not justified as per the provision.

Section 22 of the Act gives the University the remove an employee but only for a justified cause or serious misconduct.

Manoj Kumar Verma v. Management Board of Ansal Institute of technology & others

Relevant Paragraph – 13