A division bench of Justice BD Ahmed and Justice Siddharth Mridul also criticised the government for filing a feeble report.

"The Delhi government shall file a status report indicating as to how many schools are providing free books and uniforms to children coming from economically weaker sections (EWS) of society and disadvantaged group," said the bench.

The court asked the government to file report on the total number of students in the 6-14 age group in schools in both categories and number of students given free books and uniforms.

In the report, the education department has shown the students admitted under these categories in private-unaided schools in three years and not the total number of these students studying, as sought by the court.

"You (government) have filed the report cleverly. It's a wishy-washy report, we don't want it. File fresh, detailed report," the bench said.

It is mandatory for private schools to provide free books and uniforms to EWS children. Yet, few schools in the capital implement the provision.

In its status report, the government submitted that in the past three years (from 2011 to 2014) about 34,000 children have been admitted to private schools in entry level and of them, only 11,645 have been provided books and 11,281 given uniforms.

That means about 22,300 children have not been given free books and over 22,700 children did not get free uniforms. The report said according to information provided by 908 private unaided schools, only 303 schools have been providing free books and uniforms to these students.

The court was hearing a PIL filed by advocate Khagesh Jha demanding proper implementation of the provisions of the Right to Education Act to provide free books and uniforms to children from EWS and disadvantaged group in private unaided schools.

The plea said unaided-recognized schools are bound to provide not only admission but also books, uniforms and other study materials free of cost to the students admitted under the 25 percent quota of EWS and disadvantaged group.

Latest News from State News Desk