Earlier the private unaided schools, made a plea to court and challenged the government notification on the neighbourhood criteria for nursery admission
The bench of Justice Manmohan asked the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) and the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) to file their responses to the plea.
“MoUD, MHRD to reply,” said the bench, after observing that the DDA would have to “clarify its stand” on whether neighbourhood criteria would apply to schools that it had given land to at concessional rates.
On the issue of admissions criteria for minority schools, the bench pulled up the government for “ignoring constitutional provisions”. “The government baffles me at times. Sometimes they just pass orders without reading the statutes and judgements (of the Supreme Court on private minority institutes). You cannot bring out a notification which is contrary to the Constitution and constitution bench judgements,” the court said.
Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Sanjay Jain, appearing for the Directorate of Education (DoE), told the court that minority schools were at liberty to decide on admissions. “We want them to apply the neighbourhood criteria only after admitting minority students,” he said.
However, the judge observed, “It is contrary to the law and the Constitution. I am of prima facie view that this is covered by the Constitution bench judgements.” The bench, however, did not pass any orders on the plea by minority schools, allowing the government to complete arguments on Friday.