SYLLABUS SECTION: GS II (POLITY AND GOVERNANCE)
WHY IN THE NEWS?
Recently, the Delhi High Court has observe, that the provisions of the CAN’T ENFORCE (RTE) Right to Education Act cannot be unconditionally enforce on a private unaid school.
WHAT WAS THE ISSUE?
- A Class VI student in Bhai Parmanand Vidya Mandir (Delhi), was on February 11, 2022.
- Told by the school that her name had been struck off the rolls over non-payment of fees since June 2021.
- A plea was file by the family and it was mention that because of job loss during Covid-19.
- So, They are not able to pay the fees, they use to pay the fee regularly.
- The plea challenged Rules 35 and 167 of Delhi School Education Rules, 1973.
- Against the right of children to free and compulsory education under the CAN’T ENFORCE RTE Act.
- Rule 35 of Delhi School Education Rules, 1973, It provides for striking a student off the rolls,
- On account of non-payment of fees and other dues for 20 days after the last day for payment.
RIGHT TO EDUCATION ACT:
- The RTE Act was enact in 2009 to provide for free and compulsory education to all children between the ages of 614 years.
- The act is titled “the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act”.
- The act made the “free and compulsory education of all children in the age group of six to fourteen years as a Fundamental Right in such a manner as the State may, by law, determine.”
- Rule 167 of Delhi School Education Rules, 1973,
- It permits a school to strike off the name of a student for non-payment of fees and contributions.
- Tapas Majumdar Committee (1999) was set up and talked about the insertion of Article 21A.
Ø The Supreme Court’s landmark judgment in the Unnikrishnan JP vs State of Andhra Pradesh & Others (1993) held that Education is a fundamental right flowing from Article 21.
Ø Article 21-A and the RTE Act came into effect on 1 April 2010.
HIGH COURT OBSERVATION:
- The High Court rejected the challenge to the vires of Rules 35 and 167 of the Delhi School Education Rules, 1973 on the ground that it is not impinging upon the operation of the RTE Act.
- The reason for the rejection:
- The RTE Act guarantees the right to education. However, it nowhere provides that the said right can be unconditionally enforced against a private unaided school.
- Allowing the claim means, that private unaided schools would not be able to charge any fee even though they have to meet all their expenses from their own resources and accretions. This is completely untenable.
- The 86th amendment to the constitution of India in 2002, provides the Right to Education as a fundamental right (under Article 21-A) in part III of the Constitution.
- The petitioner is free to take admission in a government school if he cannot afford to pay the fee of the private unaided school, or if he is entitled to admission in the EWS category, he may apply under that category to seek a waiver of the school fee.
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Source: The Hindu