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27 June 2012

‘Madhya Pradesh Government violating Supreme Court Order on RTE Act’

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By Pervez Bari

Bhopal: Madhya Pradesh Federation of Christian Educational Institutions, (MPFCEI), and Federation of M.P. Minority Education Institutions, (FMPMEI), have condemned the recent statement of the Madhya Pradesh Education Minister that Missionary schools will have to admit students under the RTE Act which are in fact a violation of the Supreme Court order. The statement also is an attempt to tarnish the image of the Christian community in the state.
The education department officers are forcing the Christian minority run schools in many districts to admit students under the RTE. They say that the department has not sent any notification. It is to be noted that the Supreme Court judgements are law of the Country, the State Government authorities must keep the sanctity of the supreme authority of the SC.

While addressing a joint press conference of the two organisation here at Seva Sadan, the state coordinator of MPFCEI Fr. Anand Muttungal said: “RTE Act is not just an act that compels a school to take 25 per cent of admissions from the weaker section but it is aimed at all round development of the educational system. So all the educational institutions are under the RTE but admitting 25 per cent of reservation is excluded in Minority run educational institutions in the recent judgement of the Supreme Court.” 

“The government must make a new rule for the to implement the RTE in Madhya Pradesh. The SC ruling has given a new vision to the RTE Act”, said Ibrahim Qureshi, Chairman FMPMEI. 

State Vice President of MPFCEI Susheel Prasad said: “Minority educational institutions are together and the department must read the documents well before making statements against any community.”

The State General Secretary of the Isai Mahasangh Jerry Paul said: “If the state Government continues to discriminate the Christian schools in the state we will have to carry out protests all over the state.”

It may be pointed out here that the original part of the SC judgement says:-“However, the said 2009 Act and in particular Sections 12(1)(c) and 18(3) infringes the fundamental freedom guaranteed to unaided minority schools under Article 30(1), and consequently, applying the R.M.D. Chamarbaugwalla Vs Union of India [1957 SCR 930] principle of severability, the said 2009 Act shall not apply to such schools.”

While the High Court at Calcutta in its judgement on 06.5.2011 in the W.P. No. 24463(W) of 2007 said, “... I do not think, having regard to the special Constitutional status of the petitioners as educational institutions of a religious minority, they can be clubbed together with the general category of non-state private educational institutions.” 

[Pervez Bari is a senior Journalist based at Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. He is associated with IndianMuslimObserver.com as Bureau Chief (Madhya Pradesh). He can be contacted at pervezbari@eth.net]

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