17,266 Children Brought Back Into Schools: State Tells Karnataka HC

The State Government on Thursday informed the High Court of Karnataka that 17,266 of the total 21,407 children, who were identified as being out of the schooling system, have been brought back into the system.

The 17,266 children aged between six and 14 years, who were earlier out of the schools, have been admitted again.

The High Court had registered a suo-moto public interest litigation (PIL) in 2017 which was heard by a division bench headed by Chief Justice Prasanna B Varale today.

Government advocate Prathima Honnapura submitted the affidavit by Dr Vishal R, Commissioner of the Department of Public Instructions.

The Urban Development and Rural Development Departments had conducted a survey in all districts of Karnataka to estimate the number of children who were out of schools following a direction by the High Court in the PIL on November 8, 2022.

The survery found that 24,708 children were out of the schools and of them 21,407 children were identified.

The affidavit filed today records that 2,900 children aged between six and 14 who are out of schools are yet to be identified. Since the records do not show their current residences and phone numbers of their parents, they are yet to be traced. Of these, 2,254 children are estimated to be in the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) limits.

The affidavit states that 17,266 children have been admitted to schools. As many as 1,813 children have migrated with their families. A total of 259 children are unwell. Nineteen children have been admitted to open schools and 120 to Madarasas. As many as 127 children have died in the meantime. Of the originally identified children, 37 were found to be below the age of six and 1,756 were found to be above the age of 14.

Apart from these, 5,19,369 children between the ages of three and six have been admitted to Anganwadis; 51,084 children have been admitted to various private and government schools and 7,747 have migrated with their families.

The High Court recorded the submissions made in the affidavit and adjourned the hearing of the PIL by three weeks.

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