Orissa High Court Orders Sambalpur University to Compensate Student Wrongly Declared 'Fail'

Orissa HC orders Sambalpur Univ. to compensate Bibhuti Bhusan Barik with Rs 5 lakh for wrongly declaring him 'fail' in +3 exams, highlighting universities' responsibility in ensuring fair testing.

The Orissa High Court has directed Sambalpur University to pay Rs 5 lakh as compensation to Bibhuti Bhusan Barik, a student who was mistakenly marked as 'fail' in his +3 examinations in 1999. Judge Dr. Justice Sanjeeb Kumar Panigrahi emphasized the vital role universities play in students' futures, stating, "Universities have a great responsibility to their students, especially when it comes to administering exams efficiently and publishing results in a timely manner."

Barik, who appeared for the +3 Commerce examination in 1999, faced discrepancies in his results. Despite his efforts to rectify the errors over the years, he was met with no resolution from college authorities. In 2012, after filing a Right to Information (RTI) application, it was revealed that he had indeed passed the exam, but his result was wrongly marked as 'fail' due to an administrative error.

The Court noted that such negligence by the university could lead to severe academic and professional setbacks for students. It stressed the importance of timely publication of results and the need for universities to ensure fair testing practices.

Judge Panigrahi highlighted, "If universities fail to meet these responsibilities, they should provide compensation to affected students. This may include financial compensation or other measures to acknowledge and remedy the inconvenience caused."

Considering the gravity of the situation and the university's negligence, the Court ordered Sambalpur University to pay Rs 5 lakh to Barik within three months.