News and views about the implementation of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act 2009 and other legislation, schemes and policies impacting the Right to Education of India's Children.
NEW DELHI: In a first, the Delhi government's Directorate of Education
has fined an unrecognized private unaided school that was running from
land allotted to a government-aided one. The application for recognition
"up to primary level" of Adarsh School, D Block, Vikaspuri, has been
rejected and a fine of Rs 1 lakh imposed.
school had applied for recognition with hundreds of others when DoE
invited registration in April this year. But, as the DoE order states,
"On scrutiny of the application...it was observed that Adarsh School is
running a primary school in the premises of Govt Aided School, namely
Adarsh School, D Block Vikaspuri, New Delhi."
"The DDA (Delhi Development Authority) allotted land for a
government-aided school. The terms and conditions are totally different
for them and the money charged is negligible compared to a private
school. But from the same premises, they were running a private primary
school. It's a violation of the term of land allotment," says Amit
Singla, director, education. "This is a landmark order from DOE towards
implementation of Section 18(5) of Right to Education Act, 2009," says
Khagesh Jha, member of lawyer-activist group, Social Jurists, "It's been
used for the first time in Delhi, perhaps in India, to impose the
penalty for running an unrecognized school."
order further says that an education officer had written to the school
in May asking them to "shift the unauthorized primary school" but "the
school management has neither shifted the school from above said
premises nor closed down the unrecognized primary school." The
application for recognition was rejected as the norms and conditions
mentioned by the department in March were for "grant of recognition...of
schools which are running in unauthorized/regularized/undeveloped
colon[ies]." Adarsh did not qualify.
the right to education (RTE) act, only recognized schools can function.
Instead of closing down schools that did not meet land criteria, the
government relaxed the land requirement, from 800 sqm to 166 sqm, and
later invited all unrecognized schools, whatever their infrastructure
support, to register. Unrecognized schools still running after the
deadline for application was up, were fined Rs 1 lakh, and if that's not
paid within 15 days, Rs 10,000 per day after that.