The AAP government which had informed Delhi High Court it was exploring possibilities to allot land for a minority school which has been functioning from tents since its demolition 40 years ago during Emergency, has now said allotment of land would be done by the DDA.
The submission was made before a bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Jayant Nath, during hearing of a plea that despite promises of land and building, nothing was done and the school continued to function in a “tattered, tented and tinned structure, without a building” since 1976.
“The allotment of land for institutional purpose including schools is done by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA)…The court may issue appropriate direction to DDA,” Delhi government has said in its affidavit.
DDA on the other hand told the court that in “accordance with a gazette notification of April 19, 2006, issued by the Ministry of Urban Development, at present the land for schools can be got through auction nly.”
The Delhi government’s response came in the backdrop of the court’s notice issued on a PIL seeking reconstruction of the building of the minority school.
The PIL filed by civil activist Firoz Bakht Ahmed contended the state of affairs at the Qaumi School was “sad and pitiable” as it was functioning from the grounds of the Eidgah at Quresh Nagar in Old Delhi after its building was demolished on June 30, 1976, during Emergency.
The PIL has contended that children from the “down-trodden and backward class have to suffer due to threats of closure, makeshift classrooms, leaking roofs and no proper facilities.
“A hostile and inclement environment can hardly be conducive for learning. With competition at the school leaving board examinations reaching stupendous proportions, children from such schools are placed at a huge disadvantage from the very inception of their schooling life,” the plea has said.
It has also said the state was under obligation to provide infrastructure including a school building and the civic authorities have failed to discharge the statutory onus.