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File school fee refund status report: HC

Posted on Aug 01 2014 | IANS

New Delhi, Aug 1 : The Delhi High Court Friday sought a status report from the city government on the steps taken by it to refund excess fee taken by unaided private schools.

A division bench of Justice B.D. Ahmed and Justice Siddharth Mridul asked the department of education to file the status report while stating the steps taken in the issue.

The bench posted the matter for Oct 28.

"What are you (government) doing? Let us know what you have done. File status report on this," said the bench.

The court had earlier asked the city government to implement recommendations of a panel on the unaided private schools' fee structure, which asked nearly 250 institutions to return the "excess amount" to parents with nine percent interest.

The bench also said that the committee has submitted four reports based on examination of fee structures of unaided private schools and questioned why the government has not initiated the process of refunding the school fee.

The Justice Anil Dev Singh Committee, which made the recommendations, has so far examined the accounts of 605 unaided private schools of a total 1,172 institutions.

Till now, the committee has recommended that 242 schools should return excess fees collected from parents with nine percent interest from 2008 to 2011.

After the implementation of the Sixth Pay Commission, the schools increased the fees, citing additional financial burden due to increased salaries of teachers.

In August 2011, the court gave directions for setting up a three-member committee to audit the accounts of each of the schools to ascertain if the fee hike was required.

This order came on a petition filed by NGO Social Jurists, through advocate Ashok Agarwal, which alleged that schools hiked the fees "unreasonably" but failed to pay the salaries of the teaching and non-teaching staff as per the pay panel recommendations.

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