In an important ruling, the Bombay high court has held that the constitutional protection granted to minority educational institute stands on a higher pedestal than rights conferred to children under the Rights of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009, and rejected plea of an expelled student seeking re-admission in the same school.
“The constitutional protection given to a minority educational institution recognising its right to establish and administer educational institutions stands on a higher pedestal than the rights conferred upon Dhruva (the expelled student) under the Right to Education Act,” said the division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice MS Sonak.
The bench rejected petition filed by Druva’s father, Dr Vikas Motewar, especially in view of the fact that the State government has offered to secure admission for the student to some other school in the neighbourhood.
“It is not a situation where Dhruva has been totally denied her right under the Right to Education Act, since the state has come forward to offer her admission in some other neighbourhood school,” the bench said while rejecting Dr Motewar’s petition.
Dhruva was a student of Class 5 in Lokhandwala Foundation School at Kandivali (East). In August 30, 2013, the family had to move to their hometown in Nanded and so Dhruva could not go to school for about seven months.
In March 2014, the family returned to Mumbai and immediately thereafter Motewar met the school’s principal of the school. He was then told that the school management was not willing to allow Dhruva to appear for the Class 5 examination that was underway.
Eventually, Motewar approached the high court but it ruled against him. The court has now directed the state to secure admission for Dhruva in some other neighbourhood school and allow her to take the exams the current academic year.