As many as 88 orphans studying at the Kanakadas Educational Institute, a residential school located on the Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) premises here, may soon return to the streets, because of a Supreme Court judgement on August 6, 2013.
The apex court, in its verdict, ordered the institute authorities to vacate the building before August 30. In 2004, the institute had rented the old APMC building lying unused for Rs. 10,000 a month. The rent agreement was then renewed with mutual acceptance every 11 months. Relations between the institute and the APMC soured in 2006.
APMC decided to sell the five acres of land on which the building stood, and a deal was struck with a buyer for Rs. 50 lakh, as against its market rate of Rs. 90 lakh.
“We convinced the buyer to step back from the deal. However, APMC board members demanded a bribe of Rs. 5 lakh for renewing the rent agreement. The Lokayukta police caught them ile accepting the bribe, but they were let out on bail. Now, they have set out to get even,” Nandakal Babu, institute president, claimed.
The lower and High Court adjudged the case in favour of the APMC board, after which it was taken to the Supreme Court, which also upheld the High Court’s verdict and ordered the institute to vacate the premises. The institute receives no financial assistance from the government. “We don’t accept cash donations. The donors are usually asked to sponsor food and clothing for orphans. The trustees manage to pay the rent and staff salaries,” Mr. Babu told The Hindu.
The trust is now demanding that the State provide a building or make alternative arrangements. “If the government gives us a building, we will renovate it ourselves. If it doesn’t help, we cannot abandon the children,” Mr. Babu added.