Minority status of Aligarh Muslim University: SC refers matter to seven judge bench

The Supreme Court on Tuesday referred to seven-judge bench the issue of determining the correctness of minority status granted to Aligarh Muslim University.A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi referred the matter to the larger bench for defining the parameters for grant of minority status to educational institutions.

Written by Newsroom Staff February 12, 2019 18:05

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday referred to seven-judge bench the issue of determining the correctness of minority status granted to Aligarh Muslim University.A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi referred the matter to the larger bench for defining the parameters for grant of minority status to educational institutions.

After the Allahabad High Court recognised the university as a non-minority institution in 2006, the Congress-led UPA government had filed a plea challenging the verdict.

Aligarh Muslim University, amu, minority status, supreme court

In 2016, the NDA government told the apex court that it was withdrawing the appeal filed by the previous government saying that the the university was set up by a Central Act, a five-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court had held it as a “central university” and not a minority institution.

Earlier in 1981, an amendment was brought in to accord the university minority status, which was held as unconstitutional by the Allahabad High Court.

The Attorney General had told the Supreme Court that the Aligarh Muslim University could not be categorised as a minority institution.

“It is the stand of the Union of India that AMU is not a minority university. As the executive government at the Centre, we can’t be seen as setting up a minority institution in a secular state,” he had submitted, adding that “the previous stand (of UPA government) was wrong.”

The Aligarh Muslim University then approached the Supreme Court asking it not to allow the centre to withdraw the appeal.