The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) on October 9, 2019, in the case of Davinder Brar & Ors. v. Ravleen Kaur, has come down heavily on the Doon Valley International Public School, Himachal Pradesh, for not issuing transfer certificate on time to a class IX student who lost an academic year due to the delay.
The apex consumer commission bench comprising of Dr. S. M. Kantikar and Dinesh Singh directed the school to pay Rs 50,000 to the student, saying that the "School authorities cannot act in an arbitrary or casual manner in issuing a normal and factually correct school leaving Transfer Certificate. Such Certificate concerns the career of a student, and should be issued on request with the due responsibility, and at the earliest.”
The Commission was hearing a revision petition filed by the school against the decision of the State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (SCDRC) which had allowed the appeal filed by the aggrieved student, Ravleen Kaur, granting her compensation worth Rs 50,000, thereby overturning the dismissal order passed by the district forum in 2008.
Ravleen Kaur, a class IX student, had approached the school in 2005 for a transfer certificate which was not granted to her on time and the school said that she is poor at studies.
The Commission noted that the school's contention on Kaur's academic performance had no relation with issuing a factually correct School Leaving Certificate and that it was nobody's case to show her as a "good student" in the transfer certificate.
The NCDRC concurred with the findings of the State Commission that the school was not only "deficient" in its service by not issuing the Transfer Certificate on time, but it's actions of withholding the certificate also constituted "unfair trade practice".
It also agreed that the respondent student must have come to the court only after she had approached the authorities for School Leaving Transfer Certificate and it was not issued to her. In this view, the commission reiterated the State Commission's findings that, "Why even after filing of the complaint, School Leaving Certificate was not issued, only answer given by the learned Counsel for the respondents was, that unless the School Leaving Certificate is not asked for in writing, his clients are not liable to issue the same. This plea is being noted to be rejected.”
The NCDRC also noted in this behalf that, "Even when the consumer complaint was filed, the petitioner school could have acted with the due requisite responsibility and most immediately issued the Transfer Certificate requested for.”
Thus noting that the school had "unnecessarily and unwarrantedly acted in an intransigent manner,” the Commission upheld the decision of the State Commission granting compensation of Rs 50,000 to the student along with litigation costs.