Pay MBBS Fees As Per NRI Quota To Get Exit Permit: Karnataka High Court To US-Born Student Who Pursued Medical Under Govt Quota
The Karnataka High court has directed Union of India and the Bureau of Immigration to issue exit permit to a 26-year-old USA born student who misrepresented herself as Indian Citizen and pursued MBBS course under government quota, subject to her paying fees of the MBBS course at the rate that would be charged to NRI/overseas citizen of India. A single judge bench of Justice M Nagaprasanna presided over the case of Dr Bhanu C Ramachandran V. Union of India (WRIT PETITION No.24609 of 2021).
FACTS OF THE CASE:
The petitioner is before this Court seeking a direction by issuance of a writ in the nature of mandamus directing the 1st and 3 rd respondents/Union of India and the Bureau of Immigration to issue exit permit to the petitioner and has further sought a writ in the nature of prohibition restraining the respondents from initiating any action against the petitioner. The petitioner was born on 05-02-1997 in Nashville, Tennessee, USA. On the birth of the petitioner, the parents of the petitioner registered her birth before the Indian Embassy in USA. Later, the petitioner was also issued a passport of USA. On the strength of the said passport which was valid till 12-09-2004, the petitioner enters India on a tourist Visa on 23-06-2003, at which point in time, the petitioner was aged 6 years and a minor. She was admitted to the Primary School and in due course she completes her education up to 12th standard or the Pre-University. On 05.02.2015 the petitioner attains the age of 18 years and on 30.03.2015 finding herself eligible to take the Common Entrance Test, 2015 (‘CET’) which was being conducted by the 4th respondent/Karnataka Examinations Authority, applies, participates by declaring her nationality to be an Indian and secures 571st rank and was allotted medical seat in the Mandya Institute of Medical Sciences under the quota reserved for candidates sponsored by Government. The petitioner completes her education i.e., MBBS. The petitioner did not renounce her citizenship or the nationality of USA after becoming a major. She applies for a fresh passport with the US Consulate General which accepts the application of the petitioner and grants a passport of USA to be valid till 16-03-2022. After acquisition of the said passport on 17-03-2021, the petitioner files an application before the Bureau of Immigration for grant of exit permit. Refusal of grant of exit permit to the petitioner to pursue further studies in USA is what drives the petitioner to this Court in the subject petition.
The Court would direct the respondents – the Union of India and the Bureau of Immigration, to hold their coercive arm of law to be stretched upon the petitioner in the peculiar facts of this case, subject to the condition that the petitioner would pay all the fees, for all the five 25 years of the MBBS course at the rate of the fee that would be charged to NRI/overseas citizen of India treating the petitioner’s admission to be in that category and the fee to be paid to the State, taking a lenient view of the matter. Therefore, the exit permit is directed to be issued subject to the aforesaid condition, all, again, owing to peculiar facts of the case and the conduct of the petitioner misrepresenting herself to be an Indian, snatching away the career of an Indian. In the aforesaid circumstances, if the petitioner is left off the hook without any condition, it would be putting a premium on the misrepresentation that she has made throughout calling herself to be an “Indian Citizen”.
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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY PRATIKSHYA P. BEURA