PIL: elementary education dismal, discriminatory

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday issued notice to the Centre and all States and Union Territories on a public interest litigation petition seeking compulsory education for all children between 6 and 14.
It also sought a direction to remove discrimination in government-supported schools.
In its petition, Social Jurist submitted before a Bench consisting of Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan and Justice P. Sathasivam that the state of elementary education was deplorable with a very large number of schools lacking both basic academic and physical infrastructure.
In the state-funded system, “there exists an unjust and arbitrary discrimination among children on account of different layers of schools created by the government, i.e higher quality schools for the privileged and lower quality schools for the underprivileged, resulting in denial of equal opportunity of good quality education to all children.”
The system of establishing different categories of schools for children of varying economic backgrounds was unconstitutional and arbitrary as it denied the fundamental rights on education.
The state had failed to provide equal opportunity of good education, particularly to children belonging to the Scheduled Castes, the Scheduled Tribes and the Muslim community, the petition added.
Legal Correspondent


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