SC unblocks nursery admissions in Delhi

New Delhi: The Supreme Court Wednesday revoked suspension of nursery admissions, and said the children of parents who have moved the court for admission under inter-state quota, would be admitted to the schools were they have applied.

Holding that the Delhi government could not have changed the admission criteria mid-way, a bench of Justice H.L. Dattu, Justice M.Y. Eqbal and Justice S.A. Bobde said: “We direct that these 24 candidates shall get admission, if not at all admitted, being the successful candidates under the inter-state transfer category” under notification dated Dec 18, 2013.

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Pronouncing the judgment, Justice Eqbal said: “It goes without saying that the administration shall take steps to accommodate these students in various schools within its jurisdiction by increasing the number of seats in such schools.”

However, the court said, “it is made clear that this order would only enure to the benefit of those who had approached the court. It would certainly not extend the benefit to those who had not approached the court or might have gone in slumber.”

The court took a critical view of Delhi government changing its Dec 18, 2013 notification by excluding the inter-state category in its Feb 27 notification.

“In our considered opinion, it was not permissible for the administration to alter the basis of admission after the admission process had started and further having participated in the selection process, the criteria for selection could not have been questionedAby unsuccessful participants,” the court said.

“Indisputably, imparting elementary and basic education is a constitutional obligation on the states as well as societies running educational institutions,” the court said, adding “would it be proper for the children whose parents have been transferred to Delhi from different states of India can be denied admission in the schools much less the non-aided schools because of the instructions issued by the government through its education department”.