The Delhi High Court's Bench comprising Justice Sanjeev Narula observed that no right stood vested in favour of the Petitioners, who were erroneously declared to be successful candidates on account of a technological glitch.

"Therefore, the question that arises for consideration is whether a right stood vested in favour of the Petitioners, who were erroneously declared to be successful candidates on account of a technological glitch. The answer to this question has to be in negative, as no candidate can be permitted to take benefit of an inadvertent error", the Court noted.

In this case, the petitioners had appeared in National Eligibility Entrance Test UG ("NEET-PG") examination held in 2021. After the declaration of ranks, Petitioners applied for admission in the Bachelor of Dental Surgery ("BDS") course at Jamia Milia Islamia College.

All the Petitioners were declared to be successful candidates in the first round of counselling and were selected for admission. Pursuant thereto, an allotment letter was also issued to all of them.

On the strength of such allotment, Petitioners duly completed the admission process by submitting the academic fee.

Later a notice was issued by the Medical Counselling Committee ("MCC") for Jamia Milia Islamia College declaring their admissions as null and void on account of a technical glitch in the system.

Pursuant thereto, Jamia Milia Islamia college also set aside the admissions made erroneously.

Later Petitioners participated in the Mop-up counselling round but did not succeed in getting a seat in the said college.

Feeling aggrieved the petitioners approached High Court.

Advocate Tariq Adeeb appearing for petitioners argued that in round 1 of counselling, the majority of candidates preferred to opt for admission in colleges other than Jamia Milia Islamia as their first choice in a hope that they would easily secure admission therein.

He submitted that in round 1, whoever opted for the said college as their first choice, was selected for admission irrespective of their ranks since higher-ranking candidates chose other colleges.

He argued that for this reason Petitioners were admitted to the said college in the first round itself. He further contended that there wasn't any mistaken allotment as the allocation was within the bounds of the eligibility criteria, seat matrix as well as a database of all candidates' preferences.

It was further averred that Petitioners had forgone other admission opportunities available to them in various applicable quotas.

The Respondents were represented by Standing Counsel Mr Pritish Sabharwal before the High Court.

The Court observed that the respondents had adequately demonstrated the factors which crept into the system, leading to the erroneous allocation of seats to several candidates, including, Petitioners.

The Court held that the impugned notice did not take away any vested rights or substantive rights of the Petitioners. The Court observed that it was merely a step taken to correct an error whereby, an unwarranted advantage had accrued in the petitioners' favour.

"Therefore, the cancellation of the seats allotted to the Petitioners was a rectification measure, and no violation of merit or admission standards has been done. Petitioners being candidates of lower merit, are not entitled to a seat in BDS course in Respondent No. 1 college that was inadvertently allotted to them in the first round", the Court held while dismissing the petition.

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