Most private schools have kept their fee structure and audited annual balance sheets under wraps for many years thus violating norms laid down in the Delhi Education Act, the Deputy Directorate of Education has told the Central Information Commission.
Even more surprising is the fact that the directorate, which is supposed to play the regulatory role, has been caught napping when it comes to seeking these documents from schools for the last many years.
The facts emerged during a hearing of the Commission where the directorate not only admitted that it had no information about the annual balance sheets of the schools but also said that "it has not bothered to take these in the last many years" from the erring schools.
Taking a strict view of the submissions made by the Deputy Directorate of Education, the Commission in its order directed it to collect and provide the information before September 30 and also to put it on their website.
"It is apparent that the regulatory role which they (the Directorate) are supposed to fulfill is not being fulfilled by them. The Public Information officer has been directed to obtain these from the school or take punitive action as per provisions of the Delhi School Education Act and Rules 1973," Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi said in his order.
As per the Delhi Education Act and Rules 1973, unaided recognised private schools should submit documents and returns before the Directorate, but most of the schools do not follow the practice.
An RTI applicant Sanjeev Sharma questioned the Deputy Directorate of Education about the returns filed by such schools but received no reply from them.
He then filed a complaint with the CIC seeking action on the matter, to which the Commission issued a show-cause notice to the officials concerned.