Days After Sealing, Two Branches Of Apeejay School De-sealed: Delhi Govt Tells HC
Delhi government had, on 4th May, ordered the sealing of two branches of the private school over alleged violation of fee norms during the COVID-19 lockdown.
Delhi government has informed Delhi High Court that two branches of Apeejay School, which were sealed for alleged violation of fee norms, were de-sealed by the Department of Education on 8th May.
Justice Pratibha M Singh on Monday disposed of a contempt plea filed by the school authority as the application became infructuous in view of the de-sealing undertaken by the respondents. On 7th May, the school had moved the court stating that the Department of Education did not de-seal the two premises despite a court order for the same. The High Court had, on 5th May, ordered to de-seal the premises of Sheikh Sarai and Saket branches of Apeejay School.
Delhi government had, on 4th May, ordered the sealing of two branches of the private school over alleged violation of fee norms during the COVID-19 lockdown and lodging of an FIR against the management or operating heads of the schools.
The counsel representing the school, while arguing, had submitted that no show-cause notice or an opportunity of hearing was granted to the petitioners prior to the passing of the sealing order and consecutively sealing the schools.
"Directorate of Education is permitted to issue a show-cause notice to the schools. School management shall file a response to the Show Cause Notice within one week," the court had noted.
The court, however, clarified that it has neither considered nor commented upon the merits of the contentions of either party and the Directorate of Education would be at liberty to take appropriate action in accordance with the law, if so warranted, after granting an opportunity of hearing to the schools.
It said that the court has neither considered nor commented upon the merits of the direction of respondents with regard to registration of FIR against the petitioner school. In case any criminal action is initiated, the school would be entitled to defend the same in accordance with the law.
Delhi Education Minister Manish Sisodia had earlier tweeted that the school first sent fake emails in the name of the Department of Education itself to increase the fees and then also increased the fees by telling the parents that it got the approval of the government.
Therefore, an FIR has been done and the school has also been sealed, Sisodia had said in the tweet on 5th May.
AAP MLA Saurabh Bhardwaj had also tweeted "Apeejay School had been violating all kinds of norms of the healthy education system. In spite of audits showing crores of surplus money in accounts, it was illegally arm twisting parents for an increased fee. Today, two of its schools have been sealed."
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