Letter, Court Matter; Letter about court stay on GNCTD 20% BPL directive
Chief Secretary, GNCTD
Sub: Free seats condition – statutory context obfuscation in courts
Ref: ToI report on DPS court matter (text below)
Interim relief from GNCTD free-seats directive has been granted on plea that Rule 158 of Delhi Education Act gives heads of school discretionary powers about free seats – after GNCTD and DDA offered, for their year-long free-seats circus, defence only of “following the division bench’s order”.
GNCTD and DDA are fully aware that the free-seats condition flows not from Delhi Education Act but from Delhi Development Act, also because we have been pointing this out since 2001, including in our PIL of December 2003 and in course of it with reference to GNCTD initiatives in purported compliance of the free-seats order of January 2004, eg, in letter of 17/02/04 (to object to ideas to negotiate the condition, included in our Rejoinder), Note of 04/05/04 (Free-seats condition: Common School System context...), letter of 17/05/04 (for facts to be placed before the court in an overlapping matter), Note of 16/06/04 (NCMP-DMP imperatives and opportunities), letter of 23/06/04 (to object to 20% BPL directive, inconsistent with 25% EWS required by law and court order), etc.
After DB order of 27/10/2004 in our PIL we have been writing also to object to continuing litigation in disregard of it and statutory provisions. We now apprehend that this free-seats PIL is headed the free-beds PIL way and seek response to / action on our letters of 28/12/04, 03/02/05 and 07/02/05 all with reference to our WP 8954-59/2003 for enforcement of the statutory scheme for neighbourhood / common school system for universalizing education.
Gita Dewan Verma, MPISG Planner
- DDA Vice Chairman (with request for response, as above)
- Secy MoHRD, President’s Sectt, Planning Commission (in continuation of letter of 04/02/2005)
To support planned development. To oppose unplanned development. To protect our future.
- 1. ‘Reserving seats is prerogative of schools’, Times of India, 08.02.2005, p.3
NEW DELHI: In a relief to six DPS branches, the Delhi High Court put a stay on the order of the Directorate of Education and DDA on free seats for the under privileged students in public schools.
Sarin passed the interim relief order after hearing the arguments of the Delhi Public Schools. Their counsels Gopal Subramaniam and Puneet Mittal contended that even if the directorate has to follow the division bench order, it has to frame new rules as the present law does not delegate it powers to issue such an order.
Subramaniam argued: “Rule 158 of the Delhi School Education Act is very clear. The power to reserve free seats from financially weak background is vested by the statutory rule on the head. It cannot be converted into a minimum requirement to be met, failing which de-recognition would follow, especially when the head of the school has the discretionary power”.
The notices were issued on June 22 last year and January 6 this year. In response to the petition filed by DPS, the Delhi Government and DDA claimed they were following the division bench’s order.