In the matter of Prof Dr Pratap Manohar Raval v Union of India & Anr, a plea was filed by the Raval contesting the selection committee’s structure to name the new Director of the School of Planning & Architecture. One of the candidates for the position of Director of the School of Planning & Architecture is Dr Pratap Manohar Raval, Head of the Planning Department at the College of Engineering Pune (COEP) Technological University. He had contended in his appeal that the selection committee’s composition to nominate a candidate for the position of Director was dishonest and in violation of Section 17(1) of the 2016 Statute for Schools of Planning and Architecture. He further argued that Section 17(1) regarding expert selection in the field of Architecture In his plea he contended that Prof. Sudhir Jain, the chairperson, has a bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree in civil engineering but no professional expertise in planning or architecture. As a civil engineer with experience in transportation engineering, Prof. Praveen Kumar is similar. Additionally, it said that the “illegal selection committee” the Central government had established is currently working to recommend individuals for the position of director. Because not only is it wrong and discriminatory towards the petitioner and other applicants to interview some individuals and suggest names without a clear legal mandate. Professor Dr Pratap Manohar Raval filed a petition, and Justice Tushar Rao Gedela requested a response from the Central government and the School of Planning and Architecture.
According to Statute 17, the chairperson and members of the selection committee must be technical experts in the fields of planning or architecture. Surprisingly, the chairperson and one member of the selected selection committee do not even meet the minimum requirements.
Delhi HC Decision
In response to a complaint contesting the makeup of the committee charged with choosing the new director of the School of Planning & Architecture, the Delhi High Court served notice to the Central government. The Court declared that the choice for the position will depend on how the case turned out. Now, the issue will be decided on May 25.