New Delhi: Government's decision to drop German as an alternative to Sanskrit as third language in Kendriya Vidyalayas has come under judicial scrutiny with the Supreme Court on Friday issuing notice to it and seeking its explanation.
Agreeing to give an urgent hearing on the controversy, a bench headed by Justice A R Dave asked the government to file its response on a PIL and posted the case for hearing on November 28.
Advocate Reena Singh, appearing for the petitioner, contended that the decision regarding selecting language should be left to the students and parents and government should not impose its decision on them.
She also contended that government should not impose the decision in the middle of the ongoing academic session.
The court was hearing a petition filed by a group of parents of Kendriya Vidyalaya students who challenged the government decision.
The Board of Governors (BoG) of the Kendriya Vidyalaya
Sangathan (KVS), headed by HRD Minister Smriti Irani, had in its meeting on October 27 decided that "teaching of German language as an option to Sanskrit will be discontinued herewith". German has been kept as an additional subject for students.
The decision is expected to affect about over 70,000 students across 500 KVs from classes 6 to 8 who will be asked to switch from German to Sanskrit.
Challenging the decision, the petitioners said that it has been taken without keeping in mind the adverse affect it will have on students.
"The KVS has failed to take into account the pertinent fact that such a decision cannot be taken mid-session as it would amount to throwing into complete disarray the overall academic preparation of the affected students," the petition said.
They said, "the government should not take such an arbitrary and hasty decision at this belated stage and without any consultation with the affected students and their parents".
"The decision of replacement of German language with Sanskrit language in all KVSs across the country has been taken by the Respondents in a hurried manner without application of mind and without considering the catastrophic consequences on the interest and welfare of students?studying in such KVSs," the petition said.