28 Oct 2020 1:25 PM GMT
Observing that "the Constitutional guarantee of free-primary-education will not fructify in the absence of enough number of schools and therefore, the State action should be facilitative & complimentary to the establishment of private schools," the Karnataka High Court has directed the State government to consider afresh an application made by a trust seeking permission to start...
Observing that "the Constitutional guarantee of free-primary-education will not fructify in the absence of enough number of schools and therefore, the State action should be facilitative & complimentary to the establishment of private schools," the Karnataka High Court has directed the State government to consider afresh an application made by a trust seeking permission to start a school.
Justice Krishna S Dixit pulled up the authority for rejecting the application made petitioner NEXGEN EDUCATION TRUST, seeking to establish an English Medium school, for standards 1st to 8th, by its order dated February 3, 2020.
Rejecting the reasoning given by the state for denying permission that trust has not complied with Rule 4 of Karnataka Educational Institutions (Classification, Regulation and Prescription of Curricula etc) Rules, 1995. It said "They have invoked the provisions, in a pedantic way like a village priest ritualistically murmuring the hymn without knowing its inner meaning."
It added "The authorities need to be told that there exists a certain difference between a requisition for the grant of permission for founding a school and an application for the grant of excise license for opening a wine shop, they being poles asunder; the impugned orders lack elements of reason & justice; the process by which they have been made falls short of "fair standards" which a Welfare State should profess & practice."
The trust in its petition stated that Tumkur City Corporation has issued an approved building plan for the construction of a huge four storey school building (G+3) with the floor area totally measuring 4127.88 sq.mtrs. Further, the corporation has issued 'Occupancy Certificate' dated 29.12.2018, the Health Officer of City Corporation has issued 'No Objection Certificate' dated 19.10.2019, the building is perfectly in order with full facilities for drinking water, toilets and that the same is fit for school. However, the respondents contented that in terms of infrastructure, the petitioner satisfies only 67% of the requirement.
To which the court said "It is bit difficult to countenance in the absence of the material particulars thereof being stated either in the impugned orders or at least in the Statement of Objections; a bare statement would not do. This apart, what is lacking in terms of infrastructure whether touches the centrality of requirement, is also not forthcoming; be that as it may; common sense tells that, the available facilities in the school building in question certainly do not fall short of those obtained in any Government schools in the locality. As rightly contended by the learned counsel for the petitioner; after all, what was lacking could have been pointed out to the petitioner so that it would have made the same good in a time bound way. That exercise strangely has not been undertaken. This court gathers an impression that somehow the powers that be, are working to ensure that this school shall not come up, for an indefinite period of time and that the reasons for the same remaining inscrutable, give scope for assuming 'ulterior motives'."
The bench quoted from an interview given by Rabindranath Tagore in 1930. It referred to a chapter in the book titled "An Uncertain Glory – INDIA AND ITS CONTRADICTIONS, authored by Jean Dreze and Amartya Sen. The Court also relied on Article 21A and 51 (A) (k) of the Constitution of India and the Right To Education Act 2009 and observed "If the applications for grant of permission to establish such schools are mindlessly declined, that would muffle the inner voice of the aforesaid Constitutional amendments that are complimented by legislative instruments."
The bench while invalidating the impugned orders; remitted the matter back for fresh consideration and in accordance with law and after providing an opportunity of hearing to all the stakeholders, within eight weeks from date of order is produced. It has warned that delay if brooked shall entail the concerned official personally with a cost of Rs.10,000 per week payable to the petitioner-Trust.
Cause Title: NEXGEN EDUCATION TRUST And STATE OF KARNATAKA
Case No: WRIT PETITION NO. 6058 OF 2020
Date of Order: 21ST DAY OF OCTOBER, 2020.
Coram: Justice Krishna S Dixit.
Advocate P.D. SURANA, for petitioner.
Advocate PRAMODHINI KISHAN for respondents.
Click Here To Download Order