This week the Jammu and Kashmir High Court has partly upheld State Governments’ circular barring teachers from teaching at private coaching institutions.
Hon’ble Justice Sanjeev Kumar clarified that the circular would only apply to government teachers teaching students up to 8th standard.
In the order, the Bench made certain observations regarding the dangers of allowing government teachers to take tuitions. In this context, the Court observed that the government pays a hefty salary to teachers. They have a pressing necessity to impart tuitions that might also hinder the studies of their regular students. It was further observed that the quality of education in schools has gone down drastically even though the best teachers are available.
According to the Court, government teachers are highly qualified, and they receive various training from the government. Instead of concentrating on their pious jobs, they give tuitions to get more money and even skip their regular jobs to teach at coaching institutions.
The petitioner had challenged the circular on the following grounds:-
- Section 28 was only applicable to teachers who standards 1-8.
- As per the 2017 circular, teachers can give tuitions if they have prior permission from the competent authority.
- The impugned circular violates the High Court’s order in Rakesh Kumar Sharma vs the State of J&K.
Hon’ble Court referred to Rule 10 of J&K Government Employees Rule,1971 no government employee (including teachers) can engage in any business or trade without State’s permission.
The Bench noted that in May 2017, the Court had quashed 2017 circular that the petitioner referred to.
Justice Sanjeev Kumar partly upheld 2017 circular and passed the following directions:-
- Giving private tuitions at residence or coaching centres is prohibited under Rule 10 of Employees Conduct Rules if permission from the government is not taken.
- Government employees can take honorary work for charitable purposes without permission from the government.
- Government has the right to policy decisions if it deems fits in relation to employees engaging in business/trade.
- The Court directed the department of education to implement Rule 10 of Employees Conduct Rules.
- Government should start a toll-free number, where people can lodge complaints against teachers who engage in banned activities.