New Delhi: The Centre has told the Delhi High Court that its November 2010 guidelines for nursery admission is according to objectives of the Right To Education
(RTE) Act and denied that "it was based on categorisation of children", as alleged in a PIL.
Opposing the PIL, seeking quashing of the guidelines, the Centre filed an affidavit saying the Human Resource Development(HRD) ministry had consulted various educationists, academics, NGOs, civil society organisations and Education
Secretaries of certain state for suggestions to implement the provisions of the RTE Act.
"The decision to allow schools to develop categories, on the basis of the objectives of the schools and follow a system of random selection within or outside the categories, is consistent with the provisions of section 13(1) of the RTE
Act" the affidavit said.
The court, which had also issued notice to the Delhi government for issuing similar guidelines, will hear the PIL on March 8.
The PIL was filed by civil rights group, social jurist challenging the validity of government notifications (Centre`s Nov 2010 and GNCT Delhi`s December 2010).
The NGO`s lawyer Ashok Agarwal said the guidelines giving private schools a free hand to formulate their own admission criteria was against the RTE Act and Delhi high court`s previous orders.
"It is based on categorisation of children. The guidelines will lead to further commercialisation of education at the cost of hapless parents/students," the PIL has alleged.
According to the lawyer, the policy ignored a High Court appointed committee`s recommendations in 2006.
The court had constituted a panel of experts headed by Ashok Ganguly, Chairman CBSE, to go into all the issues related to nursery admission. It enumerated transparency, elimination of interview and minimizing management`s discretion as three basic principles to evolve a common admission process, the counsel added.