Home Gujarat Gujarat HC’s verdict on school fees benefited nearly 37L students

Gujarat HC’s verdict on school fees benefited nearly 37L students

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(G.N.S) Dt. 28

Ahmedabad

In a relief to nearly 37 lakh students studying in private schools in the State, Gujarat High Court on Wednesday termed the State Government’s law to regulate school fees constitutionally valid. Acting on nearly 40 petitions of private school owners who challenged constitutionality of the Gujarat Self-Financed Schools (Regulation of Fees) Act, 2017, a division bench of Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and Justice VM Pancholi upheld the Act passed in the State Assembly in March this year. Terming the legislature competent, the division bench said that it has authority to form laws for school fees for State board, central board and ICSE. The Act passed in the State Assembly came into force from mid-April this year after Gujarat Governor OP Kohli approved it. As per the law fee limits for secondary and higher secondary school is Rs 15,000, Rs 25,000 and Rs 27,000 per year, respectively. In case of keeping the fees higher than the prescribed fee structure, private schools are required to submit their proposal with valid reasons before the fee regulatory committees spread across four zones in Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Rajkot and Surat. Terming the HC verdict as historical senior Gujarat Minister Bhupendrasinh Chudasama said that the order of Gujarat HC would have long term positive impact not only in Gujarat but other States only. According to Chudasama nearly 37 lakh students studying in private schools would be benefitted. After the introduction of the Act already 1015 schools in the State reduced fees up to Rs 2000, he said adding that 1276 school reduced fees ranging from Rs 2000 to Rs 10,000 and 77 schools reduced fees more than Rs 10,000. Sunaiana Tomar, Principal Secretary, Primary & Secondary Education said that if a school would breach the law for the first time there was a provision of Rs 5 lakh fine. If it would breach it for the second time, a provision of fine ranging from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 10 lakh was kept as per the act and in case of third time, the school’s approval would be cancelled.

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