1 April 2022 5:01 AM GMT
Taking a strict view of the matter of schools operating in the residential areas of Lucknow in violation of safety standards and concerned rules and regulations, the Allahabad High Court has directed a committee headed by the District Magistrate to conduct an inspection in this regard and submit a report before the Court.The bench of Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice Alok Mathur has...
Taking a strict view of the matter of schools operating in the residential areas of Lucknow in violation of safety standards and concerned rules and regulations, the Allahabad High Court has directed a committee headed by the District Magistrate to conduct an inspection in this regard and submit a report before the Court.
The bench of Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice Alok Mathur has ordered the DM-led committee to conduct an inspection of 16 such schools in the capital and submit a report in this regard on April 18, which is the next date of hearing.
Essentially, the bench was dealing with a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) plea filed by Gomti River Bank Residents through Secretary Girdhar Gopal wherein the issue of schools running in violation of norms in residential areas of the city had been specifically raised.
The plea submitted the name of 16 such schools which are allegedly running contrary to the norms and out of these 16 schools, the name of one school [The Lucknow Public Collegiate, Jopling Road, Butler Colony, Lucknow] had been specifically referred to by the petitioner stating that the same running in a temporary tin-shed for the last 2-3 years with no permission from any Authority.
It was further submitted that at present, about 400 students are studying there, which is in violation of the standards laid down for running a school. The petitioner cited the example of this school to substantiate its claim that other schools named in the petition are also running in violation of various parameters laid down for the purpose.
Against this backdrop, the court said that it is the duty of the state not only to supervise the activities of such schools but also to ensure that these schools are running after following the desired guidelines made with regard to their functioning.
Therefore, the court has now called for a report after the inspection of such schools so as to ascertain as to whether these schools are following the relevant guidelines.
Accordingly, the Court directed for the constitution of a Committee for carrying out the inspection and submission of a report to the Court about the fact as to whether these schools are complying with the required guidelines with reference to the number of students studying therein for which detailed direction has been given by the Supreme Court in Avinash Mehrotra v. Union of India and others, (2009)6 SCC 398 case and other parameters laid down by other regulatory bodies.
It may be noted that in Avinash Mehtrotra's case (supra) case, the Supreme Court had laid down certain standards to be complied with by the schools in terms of the National Building Code of India, 2005.
Further, the Committee to be headed by the District Magistrate, Lucknow shall consist of Senior Officers, who are well versed with the guidelines and the parameters required, from the Central Board of Secondary Education, Indian Certificate of Secondary Education, U.P. Fire Service Department, State Disaster Management Department, Public Works Department, U.P., Education Department, U.P., Lucknow Development Authority and Police Department, U.P.
"As the matter requires urgent consideration looking to the safety of the students and the quality of the education being imparted to them, we expect that the inspection shall be carried out, as expeditiously as possible, and a report is submitted to this Court on the next date of hearing," the Court directed as it posted the matter for further hearing on April 18.
Case title - Gomti River Bank Residents through Secretary Girdhar Gopal v. State of U.P. through Principal Secretary, Housing and Urban Development and others
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