The Delhi High Court today said it is “not correct” to presume all private unaided schools in the city are making profits since there are cases before it over non-payment of sixth pay commission dues to their employees. “To presume that all private unaided schools are making profits is not correct as there are several contempt petitions before the court with regard to the non-payment of sixth pay commission,” Justice Manmohan said. The court made the observation while hearing a plea by a group representing private unaided schools here against a Delhi government circular stopping them from hiking fees to implement the seventh pay commission till the Directorate of Education (DoE) takes a decision on it.
The court issued notice to the DoE and sought its response on the plea of Action Committee Unaided Private Schools which has contended that under the Delhi Schools Education Act it is required to intimate its fee schedule for the coming session before March 31 and the circular is contrary to this. The school group contended that if it does not intimate the fee schedule, then the schools will not be able to hike the fees mid-session without prior approval of the DoE which is unlikely to agree to any increase.
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The group suggested placing before the court two fee schedules, one of which will include the recommendations of the seventh pay commission so that if the DoE agrees to implement the pay hike for private unaided schools then the appropriate fee structure can be made applicable. The DoE opposed the suggestion and said that if a decision is taken to implement the pay commission recommendations in private schools, then the bar of March 31 will not come in the way.
In view of the submission made by the DoE, the court said that if the pay commission is to be implemented in private unaided schools, then such institutions will have the option to intimate their revised fee structure and the same shall be considered to be intimated from March 31, 2017. Meanwhile, advocate Ashok Agarwal, appearing for some teachers, said that the pay commission recommendations have been implemented in the government-run schools. The court listed the matter for hearing on July 12.