In a landmark ruling, a full bench of the Bombay high court has held it necessary for educational institutions to obtain prior permission of state government before setting up a new school.
“It is clear from the provisions of the Secondary School (SS) Code that only those schools which have been permitted by the government to establish [a school] can apply for recognition,” the bench comprising justices DK Deshmukh, Anoop Mohta and KK Tated pronounced on Friday.
The bench was deciding a reference made in October 2010 by a division bench hearing a bunch of petitions filed by several educational institutions. The petitioner institutions had approached high court challenging the rejection of their applications seeking permission for establishing primary and secondary schools.
The applications were rejected by the education department in view of state government’s policy not to consider any new applications for new schools across Maharashtra.
The government pleader pointed out an April 2010 verdict of a division bench of the high court holding no prior permission is required for setting up a new school on permanent no grant-in-aid basis.
However, the division bench had referred the matter for consideration of a larger bench after the educational institutions pointed out the same ruling had also made it mandatory for every school to obtain recognition, as per the provisions of the SS Code, which in turn permits granting recognition only to those schools which are set up with prior permission of the government.