The Karnataka High Court on Thursday ordered issue of notice to the State government on a public interest litigation (PIL) petition questioning income limit fixed by the State government for claiming seats in private schools under weaker section category as per the RTE Act.

A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Vikramajit Sen and Justice Aravind Kumar passed the order while hearing PIL petition filed by K. Nagesh and two students hailing from BPL families in Mysore.

“The income limit for below poverty line is Rs. 30,000 per annum, which translates into Rs. 2,500 per month. Such people definitely will not be able to send their children to elementary schools and provide them with quality education. The RTE Act is meant for children of such BPL families. However, income limit of Rs. 3.5 lakh would only allow children from creamy layer to seek admission under weaker section,” the petitioners pointed out.

The petition has also pointed of the 25 per cent of the seats earmarked for weaker sections, 7.5 per cent seats have been reserved for students from Scheduled Castes and 1.5 per cent seats for Scheduled Tribes. However, the government has failed to make category wise reservation of seats for the remaining 16 per cent of seats, which has been earmarked for other weaker sections like categories – I, IIA, IIB, IIIA, IIIB, orphans, migrant and street children, children with special needs, and HIV affected/infected children.

Notice to State, MCI

The Bench ordered issue of notice to State government, Medical Council of India and others on a PIL petition seeking a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into the alleged malpractices in the admission to medical courses by way of “surrendered or dropout seats.”

The court also ordered issue of notices to the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences and Consortium of Medical, Engineering and Dental Colleges in Karnataka (COMED-K).

In his petition, Ambalike Hiriyanna, retired professor in Sociology, complained that there is a racket of “seat surrender” during admission to medical courses every year. The petition said a racket of admitting students to “dropout seats” was unearthed during admission to KIMS.

Yogeshwar case

The High Court ordered issue of notice to the Serious Fraud Investigation office on the pleas filed by Forest Minister C.P. Yogeshwar in connection with two cases against him for alleged fraud in Megacity (Bangalore) Developers and Builders Ltd.

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