In a big relief to parents of inter-State transfer category, the Supreme Court on Wednesday directed the Delhi government to provide nursery admission to 24 children under this category in various city schools.
A three-judge Bench of Justices H. L. Dattu, M. Y. Eqbal and S. A. Bobde disposing of a batch of appeals against a Delhi High Court order rejecting the plea of such children pointed out that the government had changed the eligibility condition during the course of the admission process.
Justice Eqbal said: “In spite of several opportunities given to the Delhi administration, it has not been able to sort out the problems of accommodating the children of the appellants, whose admission has been cancelled due to deletion of inter-State transfer points by the notification dated February 27. Indisputably, imparting elementary and basic education is a constitutional obligation on the States as well as societies running educational institutions.”
The Bench said “admittedly under the notification dated December 18, 2013, the children of the appellants had become eligible for admission inter alia on the basis of being children of parents who have been transferred inter-State - by being allotted 5 points. The appellants had participated in the draw of lots and secured 75 points i.e. 70 points for neighbourhood and five points for inter-State transfer, and were successful. Acting on some information, and not on the basis of a case by case enquiry, the administration came to the conclusion that approximately 50 per cent seats were being taken by those who had taken the inter-State transfer points and therefore the administration issued notification dated February 27, changing the very basis of the admission granted to the appellants’ children, by deleting the points for inter-State transfer cases and decided to determine eligibility on the basis of neighbourhood sibling.”
In these circumstances, the Bench said “we direct that the admissions already granted to the appellants’ children shall not be disturbed on the basis of impugned notification dated February 27. These children shall continue their study in those schools where they got admitted or selected for admission.’
Taking note of the fact that only 24 candidates had approached the court, the Bench directed the administration to take steps to accommodate these students in various schools within its jurisdiction by increasing the number of seats in such schools.
The Bench said it would certainly not extend the benefit to those who had not approached the Court.