Srinagar: Amid the uncertainty about the private schools with land issues, the J&K Board of School Education (BOSE) is going ahead with the tagging of the students enrolled in these schools.
Talking to Greater Kashmir, Chairman JKBOSE Parikshat Singh Manhas said that the tagging of private schools that were caught in State land and other issues has been going on since November.
“Tagging of schools is already going on. Today we did tagging of students of two schools and few schools are in the pipeline,” BOSE Chairman said.
He said that the number of such schools was around 200 to 225 but the number was reducing with each passing day as the BOSE had completed tagging of various schools.
“Having schools on State land is not the only issue but there are other issues associated with these institutions,” Manhas said.
About the schools wherein the land titles are mixed, he said that such schools should produce revenue certificates in this regard and follow their case.
“I need a No Objection Certificate (NOC). Their delay may be because they haven’t provided the NOC from the Revenue Department. If the NOC comes through, I have no problem,” the BOSE Chairman said.
He said that the board was trying to give relaxation to schools with minimal issues but there were other schools for which no chance was being made.
“We are trying to provide relief to schools with minimal issues. We are not completely against private schools as they are our schools but the set norms have to be followed,” Manhas said.
About the last date for submission of exam forms, he said that they would facilitate the students and reiterated that no genuine students would be left out.
“Don’t worry about the last date. Everything has its deadlines but where the situation is tricky, we help the students,” the BOSE Chairman said.
The issue came to light after the J&K government on April 15, 2022, amended the rules under the Education Act 2002 to provide fresh guidelines relating to the use of land and building structures by private schools in J&K.
The amendments were made by the Lieutenant Governor (LG) in the Jammu and Kashmir School Education Rules, 2010, in exercise of powers conferred by Section 29 of the Jammu and Kashmir School Education Act, 2002.
The J&K government also ordered that all those private schools which were established on the State land should close the schooling of the enrolled children with immediate effect.
The schools were asked to issue the school-leaving certificates in favour of their respective students so that they would be accommodated in the nearby government schools “subject to the consent of their parents in this regard”.
In the wake of this, the BOSE on April 22, 2022, issued a circular for all the schools to furnish NoCs and other relevant documents duly attested by the concerned competent authorities.
“In pursuance and amplification of instructions passed by the government vide SO bearing No 177, it is hereby circulated for the information of all the heads of affiliated private high and higher secondary schools of Kashmir division including district Kargil of Ladakh to furnish the relevant documents duly issued by the concerned competent authorities by April 30, 2022,” reads the BOSE circular No F (Gen-B) KD/22 issued in April 22, 2022.
As per the circular, the documents to be furnished included NoC regarding land use issued by the Revenue Department, documents relating to possession of the land required for building, a playground in case the applicant is the owner or a lease deed with a minimum period of 10 years, in case a private school was being run or proposed to be run in a rented building or land.
“Further, the failure of the academic institutions, if any, to furnish the requisite documents within the stipulated time frame shall result in the suspension of all the board-related facilities to these academic institutions for the current session, without any further notice,” the circular reads.
However, months later the BOSE withdrew the circular No F (Gen-B) KD/22 issued on April 22, 2022, citing that the NoC and recognition, in the first instance, is being issued by the Government School Education Department, in favour of the aspiring schools after asserting facts including the availability of land and its status, as is under the appurtenant to such schools, given the School Education Act 2002 and other rules therein.
“Against this backdrop, the circular instructions dated April 22, 2022, and May 13, 2022, are hereby withdrawn forthwith,” read another circular issued on July 14, 2022.
“However these circular instructions should be subject to the outcome of the writ petition, if any, pending before the competent court of law,” it reads. (Greater Kashmir)