A Bombay High Court judge has asked a city-based school to consider allowing the mother of a junior KG student to pay fees in instalments, as the widow cannot afford to pay the entire amount in one go. The judge also offered to pay the amount from his own pocket, so the child would not be deprived of an education.
Justice V M Kanade, sitting in a division bench along with Justice M S Sonak, at a hearing on Friday, asked the Lokmanya Tilak High School in Tilak Nagar, Chembur to allow the mother of the four-year-old child to pay the fee in instalments as she could afford to pay the entire amount rightaway.
“Please consider this or else I will pay...let the child be not deprived of getting an education,” said Kanade, the seniormost HC Judge.
He was hearing a petition filed by the child’s mother who is seeking admission for her son.
The woman, Rita Kanojia, is a widow and works as a housemaid. She stays in the slums near the school. Her husband, who ran a laundry service, died of cancer in July 2014.
Her two daughters study in Class III and IV in the same school. Now, she is seeking admission for her son Kartik in Junior KG. The family cannot afford the school fees, the court was told.
During a previous hearing, the Court had told the school authorities to grant admission to the child without insisting on payment of the building development fund of Rs 19,500. Later, the school asked her to pay Rs 10,500 as school fees.
As Kanojia was unable to give the amount in one go, she requested the school to let her pay in instalments.
However, the school authorities refused to consider her plea and directed the watchman to prevent her from entering the school premises, her lawyer told the Court.
“Please take a sympathetic view of the case and do not deprive the child from getting an education,” the bench said.
The bench asked the school authorities to respond to the petition and posted the matter for further hearing on June 27.