In a move that will affect nearly 6,000 students, Nepal has ordered five private schools that teach Indian studies and subjects to stop new admissions.

The Ministry of Education has asked five schools, conducting examinations under India’s Central Board of Secondary Education, not to admit new students for the next academic year, the official daily Gorkhapatra reported, quoting District Education Officer Baikuntha Aryal. Those violating the order would be penalised, Mr. Aryal warned.

The schools are Modern Indian School, Rai School, Alok Vidyashra, Rupy’s International School and Chadbagh School.

The Education Ministry said it had sent a letter to the schools concerned, saying they could not function with the CBSE system as they were not given permission.

Indian Embassy officials were not available for comment.

The decision will affect nearly 6,000 students enrolled in these schools. There are around 14 schools that are running under the Indian educational system. The Indian government grants scholarships to more than 2,000 Nepalese students every year.

Recently, the DAV Sushil Kedia Higher Secondary School, which is also run under the CBSE, has been targeted by students’ and teachers’ unions affiliated to the CPN-Maoist, the breakaway faction of the Unified CPN-Maoist, apparently for teaching Indian subjects. Last year, CPN-Maoist banned the screening of Indian movies and the entry of vehicles with Indian number plates into Nepal. The organisations have claimed that using the Indian educational system is against Nepal’s interests. However, many private schools use American and British education systems.