Special Correspondent

Social activist seeks information on adherence

to Karnataka Education Act

GULBARGA: The “failure” to provide information sought by social activist Shaikh Shafi Ahmed according to the provisions of the Right to Information (RTI) Act has landed the Education Department in a spot.

Mr. Ahmed had filed an application to the Primary and Second Education Department seeking information on the adherence to the conditions laid down in the Karnataka Education Act, 1983, by the department and educational institutions.

He wanted to know , whether the department has maintained any record or inspection report with respect to the appointment of teachers and other staff in the educational institutions.

Mr. Ahmed also sought details of the data on fee collection and fee structure in private schools according to rule 10 of the Act, formation of parent-teacher committees in schools according to rule 12, admission procedure in private schools, and whether the department had launched any vigilance drive during the time of admissions to prevent collection of donation without receipt.

‘Details irrelevant’

In reply to the application, the department initially provided a photo copy of the Karnataka Education Act. Later, it asked the Deputy Directors of Public Instruction (DDPI) of various districts to provide the details sought. But the information provided by the DDPIs of some of the districts was irrelevant and inconsistent, Mr. Ahmed said.

The Karnataka Information Commission, in its sitting held in Koppal on June 20, upheld Mr. Ahmed’s view that most of the institutions were not complying with the provisions of the Act.Mr. Ahmed, in his application submitted to the Commission, said that there was a need for the Education Department to prescribe a check list of inspections and compliance with provisions of the Act. The Education Department, in its undertaking before the Commission, said that it would be able to complete inspections at all the educational institutions within a year, and inform Mr. Ahmed of it every three months from June.

Mr. Ahmed said here on Monday that the information provided by most of the DDPIs and Block Education Officers were incomplete and misleading. Proper information had been provided only with regard to the inspections carried out in connection with the appointment of teachers. The information provided by the department did not carry details of the basic amenities in schools, or made it clear whether the fee structure fixed for private schools is being followed, whether parent-teacher committees have been formed and so on.

Mr. Ahmed said he would not be able to appear before the Commission on Tuesday and had sent his objections to it by post.