Accept admission applications till Jan 31: SC tells Sanskriti School

New Delhi, Jan 19 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Tuesday extended, till January 31, the time for the elite Sanskriti School to accept the application for admissions to nursery classes, making it clear that extension of time for accepting application for admission was for the school only.

A bench of Justice Anil R. Dave and Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel extended the time, saying that a three-judge bench would hear the plea by the central government and the Sanskriti School assailing the Delhi High Court order holding that the society that was running the elite school was a state and directing it to be converted into a Kendriya Vidyalaya.

The court decided to commence the hearing by the three judges bench on Thursday as amicus curiae Arvind Datar, who is assisting the court in the matter, said that there were judgments which were at variance with each other on when a society would be an instrumentality of the state.

Datar urged the court that a three judge bench should hear the matter and once for all give an authoritative view as to under what circumstances a society managing the affairs of an institution or a sport would be akin to the state.

While quashing the 60 percent quota reserved in Sanskriti School for children of Group A officers who enter service through the Civil Services Examination, the Delhi High Court by its November 6 verdict had said: “The state cannot provide funds to any private individual to establish a school for an elite segment of society.”

The high court had also asked the central government to see whether the school – run in Chanakyapuri by wives of top government officers – can be made part of the existing Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan.

Senior counsel K.K.Venugopal appearing for the Sanskriti school told the court that it was being run by a private society and any attempt to view it as an arm of the state would have serious consequences.

Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told the court that the issue was not just confined to 60 percent quota for the wards of the Group A officers but whether the society running the school was a private one or a state.

Even as the school and the central government pressed for staying the high court judgment, senior counsel Shekhar Naphade, appearing for the Delhi government, told the court that even if this happened, the Sanskriti School would not be able to take advantage of the 60 percent quota as the state government had abolished all reservations by January 6 notification.

He contended that in the wake of January 6 Delhi government notification doing away with all quotas except 25 percent reservation for children belonging to socially and economically weaker section of society under Right to Education Act, the November 6 Delhi High Court verdict has become infructuous.

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