Delhi High Court Asks JNU Not to Charge Visually Impaired Student for Interim Accommodation

The court listed the matter for further hearing and disposal on February 12
(Representative Image)

JNU has been ordered by the Delhi HC to allow a visually impaired student who was evicted from the hostel to reside in a guest house on campus without having to pay any money

The Delhi High Court has directed the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) to permit a visually impaired student, who was evicted from the hostel, to stay in a guest house on the campus without charging any money for the time being. The high court passed the order after being informed by the student’s counsel that he was provided an interim accommodation by the JNU pursuant to the court’s earlier order, but was being charged Rs 100 per day which was beyond his financial reach. The lawyer said the student is 100 per cent blind.

Justice Hari Shankar granted a final opportunity of 10 days to the university to file a response to the petition challenging the eviction of Sanjeev Kumar Mishra from the hostel on the ground that the applicable rules do not permit hostel accommodation to a student pursuing a second postgraduate course. Advocate Rahul Bajaj, representing the petitioner, submitted this rule cannot be applied in all cases while being unmindful of the physical disabilities that individual students may suffer from.

He said the petitioner was sleeping on library benches and has no place to stay during the day. On January 4, the court had issued notice to JNU asking it to file a response within a week. However, neither a response was filed nor any lawyer appeared for the authorities during the hearing on January 22.

The JNU’s counsel had submitted on January 4 that in case the petitioner has no place to stay, the university would be willing to offer him some accommodation till the next date of hearing. The court had made it clear that this interim arrangement was only to ensure that the petitioner was not subjected to continued hardship, and would be subject to the outcome of his petition.

On January 22, on being told by the petitioner’s counsel that JNU was charging Rs 100 per day from Mishra for the room provided on the campus, the court directed the university to permit the petitioner to stay in the room till the next date of hearing without charging him any fees. The court listed the matter for further hearing and disposal on February 12, and asked the parties to file their written submissions.

(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – PTI)

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