New Delhi: In a fillip to the autonomy of government-aided minority schools in the city, the Delhi High Court has said that they cannot be forced to absorb surplus teachers and employees of others schools.

The Delhi School Education rules empowering government to direct the schools funded by it to absorb extra staff of other schools are not applicable to the minority schools, said a bench of justices S Ravindra Bhat and GP Mittal.
Delivering its verdict on a batch of petitions by some government-aided minority schools, the high court bench said government's act of directing a minority school to employ surplus staff of other institutions would be an "imposition" on it.

"When those personnel are deployed by then administration on an unwilling (if not protesting) minority institution, it becomes an imposition, robbing the school or institution its choice to pick its personnel, guaranteed by the Constitution," said the ruling.

"Therefore, it is held that Rules 47 and 64 (1) (e) of Delhi School Education Act are inapplicable, to the extent that an unwilling school cannot be directed to accept such teachers or employees," the court said.

The bench also held that government-aided minority schools do not fall within the ambit of government's power to appoint one of its officials in recruitment panel of aided schools to oversee the appointment of teachers and other staffers and interfere with their decisions.

The court, however, clarified to have adhered to the recruitment rules and other general norms on issues of qualification, age, experience and other such criteria for appointment of their staffers and teachers.
Its decision came on the plea of the schools to restrain government from imposing its decision on them to employ some staff.

The Constitution has guaranteed autonomy to the minority schools and the government has no right to intervene with certain decisions of the school including the recruitment of staff, the schools had asserted.