Delhi High Court’s bench of justices S Ravindra Bhat and R V Easwar, on 28 February, reserved its verdict on a plea that challenged the guidelines set by Lt Governor for Nursery admissions, particularly the one that clubs disabled children with those from economically weaker groups (EWS) and further seeks 3% quota for children with special needs.
A bench has also directed Delhi government to provide the current data that reveals the accurate number of seats available at primary and pre-primary level in the city schools. The data must also include the figures separately, of those schools that are well-equipped to accommodate the kids with special needs, which Delhi government did not mention in its affidavit, even after asking for it by court, a month ago. The Court has called for information and figures in a signed document from state government.
While the proceedings were going the senior advocate Kirti Uppal and advocate Anshumaan Sahni, who appeared for the petitioner Pramod Arora, told that till date, the state issued no circulars regardless of high court’s orders. To this the state government said that 25% seats for EWS category have been filled, whereas the general category seats are challenged in petitions made by others which is why no circular has been issued. The state also added that the children with special needs to be enrolled in government schools only.
However, the bench questioned, what if the parents are able to afford to send their disabled children to private schools? The court said,”Your present regime does not allow that."
Upon this, the chief commissioner for Persons with Disabilities responded to the bench that as per the related law, the government is obligated to give free education to every disabled child.
Another Petition on Nursery admission have also observed some developments in which the High Court’s division bench of Chief Justice BD Ahmed and Justice S Mridul, refused to lift its stay on the nursery admission process till April 2 after hearing various stakeholders during proceedings.
During the proceedings, the justices have also directed the Directorate of Education to come up with a solution on how to guarantee the rights of those children who could have secured admission in the interstate transfer category but after the scrapping of transfer points those kids are now facing uncertainty. The court has also asked the Directorate of Education to publish the details on the website, regarding the previous draw of lots held for nursery admissions.