The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has registered only a 19 per cent clearance of complaints lodged in violation of the Right to Education Act this year despite fewer complaints coming its way.
Information gathered under the Right to Information Act by activist Rashmi Gupta revealed that “last year out of 687 complaints made to NCPCR only 132 were solved”.
Brought into force three years ago, the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act is an important tool for the overall development of the child.
“In 2012-13,” Ms. Gupta said, “only 19 per cent cases were cleared by NCPCR. As per the RTI reply since the enactment of this Act from April 1, 2010, the Commission got total 3,632 complaints of violation of RTE Act. Out of these only 1,191 were solved by NCPCR. It means the Commission solved only 32 per cent cases in the last three years. The clearance rate does not sound very healthy for the children who are caught in trouble accessing their right to education.’’
The RTI response notes that the number of complaints were the highest from Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Maharasthra, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh.
“Most of these areas have registered a large number of complaints ranging from schools not giving admissions, charging/overcharging for services and subjecting children to corporal punishment,” noted Ms. Gupta.
Meanwhile the percentage of complaints resolved dropped from 57.6 per cent (2010-2011) to 21.54 per cent (2011-2012) and further to 19.21 per cent (2012-2013), as per the RTI response.
Speaking about the cases and the low clearance rate, NCPCR chairperson Shantha Sinha said: “We have a good system in place to register all the complaints that come to us. These cases also include the infrastructural problems–lack of toilets, ‘ pakka rooms’ and lack of teaching staff and material etc–these are complaints that take a longer period of time to resolve and we don’t close our cases till the time we are satisfied with the progress and the complainant does not state that he is satisfied with the work done.’’
“Cases of not getting admission, overcharging are easier to resolve. Also several State Commissions have been set up in the last year and complaints are going directly to them,’’ she added.
‘These cases also include infrastructural problems’