The Delhi government on Tuesday came under severe criticism for failing to fill up 19 posts of principals that fell vacant in 2007.
The Supreme Court lashed out at the government's education department and ordered an inquiry into the lapses, saying the delay amounted to destruction of fundamental right to education under Article 21.
A bench headed by Justice Dalveer Bhandari directed the Delhi Chief Secretary to submit a report within four weeks. The detailed report has to identify the officers responsible for not filling up the posts and indicate the action proposed against them.
As the government admitted its fault in not responding to Union Public Services Commission's (UPSC) letter in August 2007 seeking clarification for over two years, the court directed the inquiry report must indicate each erring officers' role, along with name and designation.
"Nobody should be spared. Not even the senior officers," the bench warned the government counsel while hearing a public interest litigation filed by advocate Ravinder Bana.
Swift action on other front
Within days of a court reprimand, the Delhi Government swung into action and filled up 50 per cent of the teachers' vacancies in its schools.
Subsequent to a Supreme Court order on February 17, the state administration convened several meetings to fill up 355 of the 529 vacancies of senior teachers.
Of the 5,485 vacancies in the trained graduate category, the promotion committee filled up 3,008 vacancies. It promoted assistant teachers of the MCD, directorate of education (DoE) and its lab assistants to the posts.
In an affidavit before SC, the government said the remaining posts would be filled through direct recruitments for which the Delhi State Subordinate Board (DSSB) has already invited applications.
With regard to the 251 vacancies of principals, the government has already met UPSC, which has promised to complete the process within a time bound framework, preferably by June 2010.