The Delhi government on Wednesday told the Delhi high court that it was in-principle ready to run municipal schools if legal provisions permit and if adequate funds were available.

Appearing for the Delhi government, its standing counsel Ramesh Singh said the court may decide on other aspects, including finances, post creation, land ownership and valuations, capacity of administering, budget provisions and statutory provisions.

The submissions were made when the court was hearing a plea filed by NGO Social Jurist, which had said school education in Delhi should be administered by one entity, the Delhi government. The affidavit concurred with the petitioner’s claim that education was facing a neglect and the fundamental rights of children, enrolled in schools run by local bodies, to receive good quality education, was being violated.

It argued it was unfair for such students to not get similar opportunities as their peers in the Delhi government schools despite being residents of the same territory.

“Further, teachers and principals too would get better training opportunities and exposure as their peers in the Delhi government schools. Also school infrastructure and its maintenance too can be at par with the infrastructure in the Delhi government,” the affidavit read.

Reacting to the government’s submission, North corporation mayor Adesh Gupta said, “We are doing a lot of work and considerably improved from the way MCD schools were run earlier.”

South Delhi mayor Narendra Chawla said the Delhi government was scared of the MCDs. “They do not give us funds because they are scared of our performance. We are opening new schools every now and then. We have started smart classes and are holding science fairs. They are trying to do politics and nothing,” he said.

Education expert Shyama Chona said, “If the government wants to take over, it should start a pilot project by taking over a few MCD schools first. Also, the government should do a comparative study between its schools and the MCD schools, and make it clear what it exactly wants to change.”

First Published:
Mar 07, 2019 03:08 IST

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