The Delhi High Court asked the Centre and the Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan (KVS) on Monday to state their stand in response to a petition alleging the closing down of the Kendriya Vidyalaya NTPC Badarpur here.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma directed the authorities concerned not to close down the school and ensure that it is maintained properly in the meantime, lawyer Ashok Agarwal, who appeared in the matter for petitioner NGO Social Jurist, said.
The counsel representing the KVS said the organisation has not taken any decision to close down the school.
However, the education ministry has taken a decision in this regard in consultation with the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), which is yet to be made known to it, the KVS counsel said.
The bench, also comprising Justice Subramonium Prasad, directed that the matter be listed for further consideration on July 27.
The petitioner has alleged that the authorities have contemplated closing down the Kendriya Vidyalaya NTPC Badarpur, which would have a major adverse impact on its students as well as the aspirants residing in the nearby areas.
The petitioner said the shutting down of the school, which was opened in 1981-82 and was running as a project funded by the NTPC, would be in violation of the fundamental right to education as guaranteed to students and the provisions of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009.
It argued that there is no justification behind closing down a functional school only because the NTPC project has shut down.
“The NTPC plant at Badarpur was shut down in October 2018. It is submitted that since 2018 and onwards, parents of the students studying in respondent Kendriya Vidyalaya NTPC Badarpur have been approaching respondent Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, respondent Ministry of Education and other authorities to stop the contemplated action of closing down the school,” the plea filed through lawyer Kumar Utkarsh said.
“Parents are being threatened that respondent Kendriya Vidyalaya NTPC Badarpur would be closed down any time. Needless to mention that the closure of the school is neither in the interest of the students studying in respondent Kendriya Vidyalaya NTPC Badarpur nor in the interest of the society at large,” it added.
According to the petitioner, the closing down of the school would be arbitrary, unjust and against public interest as well as public policy.
The Delhi government, the lieutenant governor and the NTPC are also parties to the proceedings.