The Delhi High Court on Monday permitted the Delhi University to offer admissions in its newly introduced five-year integrated law course on the basis of the score of CLAT-UG, held last year, only for the current academic year 2023-24. A bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Sanjeev Narula passed the interim order while observing that classes have started in all other universities for the current academic session.
The high court was hearing a petition against Delhi University’s (DU) decision to admit students to the five-year integrated law course solely on the basis of Common Law Admission Test — UG 2023 and not Common University Entrance Test (CUET).
The court observed that the matter involves a broader issue - whether CUET should be mandatory for admissions in all central universities or if such varsities should have the liberty to make decisions in the matter of admission.
“The matter requires consideration. However, for the present academic year, as in all universities the classes have started, the Delhi University is permitted to admit students for the five year law courses based upon CLAT-UG which is a common law entrance test,” the bench said.
The bench appointed senior advocate Arun Bhardwaj as amicus curiae to assist the court in the matter and listed the petition for further hearing on November 23. During the hearing, the bench perused the affidavit filed by the University Grants Commission (UGC) Chairman pursuant to the court’s earlier directions.
The affidavit stated that CUET is not mandatory for professional specialised courses like law, engineering and medicine and that the universities offering such courses can adopt different admission criteria including conducting entrance tests like CLAT and NEET. UGC said it has resolved that CUET will be mandatory for admissions in all general degree programmes in central universities.
The bench had earlier asked the UGC Chairman to file an affidavit clarifying whether CUET is mandatory for admission to 5-year law degree courses in central universities, after its two top officials spoke in different voices on the issue.