Colleges Must Return Original Certificates of Students In Telangana, High Court Help Plz.!

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The Educational Institutions are making the students sign contracts consenting the institutions to “Withhold their Original Academic Certificates” in order to give them admission in their colleges as a regular practice. Also, in Telangana certain sections of students who are also eligible for the “Fee Reimbursement Program” of the government, even they are also made to sign the contracts consenting the colleges to retain their original certificates and in the event of the state government delays the fee reimbursement, then the students certificates are not released even if the student graduates, and if the students want to pursue “Higher Education” then the colleges expect the student to pay the fee due from the government by themselves and only then the certificates of the students are released by the colleges. Such contracts where One party has an undue advantage and also a contract which is against the public policy.  It is trite that whatever tends to injustice of operation,

restraint of legal rights, whatever tends to the obstruction of justice and whatever is against the morals can be said to be against public policy.

The Indian Contract Act 1872, Section 10 Defines Contract as follows:

         “10. What agreements are contracts.—All agreements are contracts if they are made by the free consent of parties competent to contract, for a lawful consideration and with a lawful object, and are not hereby expressly declared to be void.

Section 16 of the Indian Contract Act 1872 defines ‘Undue Influence (Contract):

16. “Undue influence” defined.—(1) A contract is said to be induced by “undue influence” where the relations subsisting between the parties are such that one of the parties is in a position to dominate the will of the other and uses that position to obtain an unfair advantage over the other.

(2) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing principle, a person is deemed to be in a position to dominate the will of another—

(a) where he holds a real or apparent authority over the other, or where he stands in a fiduciary relation to the other; or

(b) where he makes a contract with a person whose mental capacity is temporarily or permanently affected by reason of age, illness, or mental or bodily distress.

(3) Where a person who is in a position to dominate the will of another, enters into a contract with him, and the transaction appears, on the face of it or on the evidence adduced, to be unconscionable, the burden of proving that such contract was not induced by undue influence shall lie upon the person in a position to dominate the will of the other.

Section 18 of the Indian Contract Act 1872 defines ‘Misrepresentation of Facts (contract):

18. “Misrepresentation” defined.—“Misrepresentation” means and includes—

(1) the positive assertion, in a manner not warranted by the information of the person making it, of that which is not true, though he believes it to be true;

(2) any breach of duty which, without an intent to deceive, gains an advantage to the person committing it, or any one claiming under him; by misleading another to his prejudice, or to the prejudice of any one claiming under him;

 (3) causing, however innocently, a party to an agreement, to make a mistake as to the substance of the thing which is the subject of the agreement.

Now, at the outset of the facts and the laws prevailing in the country, we all understand that neither the students nor the parents are aware that the “Educational Institutions” are not allowed to retain the original Certificates of the students during the admission process and only verify the original certificates and take attested copies of the certificates for their reference.

The colleges are also in the position of “Dominance” and “Undue Influence” so far as the admission of a student in to their institutions are concerned. Under Section 19 of the Indian Contract Act 1872, such contracts induced by Undue Influence may be set aside either absolutely or partially as the court may seem just.

The practice of retention of Original Certificates is rampant across the state and it has always been illegal. Only during 2016 the University Grants Commission on December 6th issued a notification which explicitly prohibits the Universities from retaining the original certificates and this does not mean that the retention of certificates was allowed before 2016. The notification also does not clarify as to what the exact penalty is for such an offense, as a total of 5 penalties have been outlined which the Educational Institutions may face up on retention of certificates. The said notification has been submitted as the document.

We "Forum Against Corruption" Hyderabad humbly request the honorable Chief Justice of Telangana to Help the students who are suffering due to this and working as drivers, part time jobs in other areas and losing good opportunities as they do not have their ORIGINAL CERTIFICATES WITH THEM and do justice to all the students across board.