In a ruling by the Punjab and Haryana High Court, it has been announced that the date of birth mentioned on the school education board certificates cannot be changed on the candidates will and that too when the DOB on board certificate was simply reproduced as mentioned by the student at the time of submission to the school, which had been used by the student throughout his entire schooling period.
The court came to the ruling while dismissing the petition of a person asking for a change in date of birth in the certificate which was issued by the Central Board of School Education (CBSE) and that too seven years after passing from the school.
The rationale that was made by Justice K Kannan was that there could be a possibility that the parent had secured the admission of the child by making some manipulations in the date of birth of the child and now the child might be seeking admission but due to over-age or under-age might not be able to gain that admission.
Kannan excerpted that, “The plea of estoppel, which operates against a child is on the basis of a statement of a guardian and if an entry is made to gain advantage relating to the age of stipulation for an admission, it cannot be later changed to the benefit of the candidate after the schooling is over to a date, which is convenient to the candidate.”
Estoppel is a legal principle that bars a party from denying or alleging a certain fact owing to that party’s previous conduct, allegation or denial.
The petitioner, Ambika Kaul, had approached the high court wanting to change her date of birth by reducing it an year from July 4, 1991, to July 4, 1992 in her CBSE certificate.
Justice Kannan expressed, “If the date of birth was of the year 1991, a change cannot be brought in the school records if the petitioner sought admission in the school giving a date of birth deliberately from what according to her was true.”
The court also made it clear while passing the judgment that CBSE could not issue a certificate which is different from the information contained in the school records and what was brought in the CBSE certificate was not any typographical error. CBSE informed the court that the only occasions on which the board will be allowed to make corrections is in the case when there is a typographical error in making the certificate consistent with the school record.
Justice Kannan also made clear his shock over the petitioner not coming forth for so many years, she had received her CBSE certificates in May 2007 and had not approached the court for so many years. Even though the court dismissed the plea to make the changes in the school certificates, but also notified that any corrections need to be applied for within three years from the date of knowledge of the alleged wrong entry in 2007 or within three years from attaining age of majority in 2012.