Do not close any school, J&K High Court tells Government

The High Court of Jammu and Kashmir has ordered the state government not to close any schools unless and until they have taken the permission of the court. Recently, a government school was asked to shut down so that it can make way for the construction of a parking lot. This move was not favored by anyone and the school teachers took out a rally to get support for their demands.

Not only teachers, even the parents protested this move. This school has almost 200 students studying and if the school shuts down, it would mean a great loss to all those 200 students, they argued.

A bench of Chief Justice N. Paul Vasanthkumar and Justice Tashi Rabstan said, “Considering the Right to Education guaranteed under Article 21A of the Constitution of India and under Section 4 of the Jammu and Kashmir School Education Act, 2002, we are restraining respondents from closing any government school that are functioning as on date. If any school is to be closed down for any valid reason(s), permission from this court should be obtained.”

It also said, “A shocking news item has come to the notice of this court through print media today. An existing school, Government Girls High School, City Chowk, Jammu, is ordered to be closed down by the government even though more than 200 students are studying in it, that too in the middle of the academic year. The students and their parents are protesting. Schools that are functioning and catering to the education needs of local residents shall not be closed. Thus, we are constrained to pass an order prohibiting the respondents from closing the said school till further orders.”

This was the demand of the local administration in the area. The administration wanted to demolish the area so that space for parking lot can be created, but following the protests, it has been decided that the school will be shifted to some other place.

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