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CIMA Gallary

DAV parents protest fee hike

Cuttack, Dec. 11: Parents and guardians of DAV Public School students at Sector VI, CDA, hit the streets here today to protest against fee hike.

The parents’ associations of the DAVs at Pokhariput and Chandrasekharpur in the state capital are also livid.

They have threatened to lock up the schools on Wednesday to oppose the hike in fees by the CBSE-affiliated institutions in the twin cities.

The parents have termed the decision to raise the fee by anything between Rs 900 and Rs 1,200 as “arbitrary” and “illegal”. They contended that the matter was still pending before the Supreme Court.

President of the parents’ association at DAV, Gandarpur, in Cuttack, Biswajit Das, said: “We have urged parents not to send their children to the schools. We will also protest in front of all DAV schools across the state on Wednesday.”

On September 6 last year, Orissa High Court had ruled against the fee hike by the management of DAV schools in the twin cities. A division bench of Chief Justice V. Gopala Gowda had endorsed an earlier court ruling which said that the “Orissa Education Act is applicable to the DAV schools, which are affiliated to the CBSE. The managing committee is to be constituted in accordance with the Orissa Education Act and not according to the affiliation by-laws of the CBSE”.

It had also approved the previous order striking down fee hike on the ground that it was made by local managing committees constituted in a way “contrary to law”. However, top DAV officials clarified that the hike was in accordance with the decision of an interim committee constituted on the instructions of the apex court.

“Some parents are creating confusion by giving incorrect statements to the media without knowing the proper details of the pending case,” an official said, adding that the hike was effected in a transparent manner with the consent of the parent-teacher coordination committee (PTCC).

“All these facts have been submitted before the Supreme Court for further course of action,” the official said.

However, parents claim that PTCC was formed arbitrarily and that the views of many parents were not taken into consideration. Four days ago, the parents’ association of DAV, Rajabagicha, in Cuttack had demonstrated criticising the “overnight” constitution of PTCC by drawing lots.

“We are against the selection procedure. We will demand a contact list of the members who are now part of the PTCC and decide our next course of action,” said Rajabagicha DAV Parents’ Association secretary Aptakam Mishra.

School fee hike had remained a contentious issue in the state since the private English-medium schools enhanced tuition fees from the 2009-10 academic session on the plea to implement the Sixth Pay Commission for both teaching and non-teaching staff. DAV runs nearly 40 schools in the state including four each in Cuttack and Bhubaneswar.