PUBLIC INTEREST LITIGATION (PIL) NO. – 576 OF 2020
ADARSH BHUSHAN VS. STATE OF UTTAR PRADESH
BENCH: CHIEF JUSTICE RAJESH BINDAL AND JUSTICE J. J. MUNIR
FACTS OF THE CASE
The Allahabad High Court ordered private schools to adjust or refund the excess money they charged students (15 percent of the total fee) during the COVID Pandemic (2020-21 session) on Monday.
The order was issued by a bench composed of Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice J. J. Munir during a hearing of a number of petitions filed by disgruntled parents from all over the state seeking fee regulation in all of Uttar Pradesh’s government and private schools.
Additionally, the court mandated that any overpayment be incorporated into the subsequent fee.
The argument made by the petitioners was that because certain facilities were not made available during the COVID-19 pandemic, they do not have to pay for them. On behalf of the petitioners, advocates Shashwat Anand and Yanendra Pandey made an appearance. They argued that fees are a trade-off and that private schools did not offer any services other than online tuition during the 2020–21 school year.
The High Court, in its order, directed the private school that in the case of students still in school, any fee paid in excess of what was determined by the Supreme Court in the Indian School case (supra) judgement may be adjusted in the fee to be paid in the future. The High Court took note of the judgment of the Supreme Court and referred to the directions that were issued therein.
The Court has ordered that the amount be calculated and returned to students who have dropped out or left school. The court’s order stipulates that this task must be completed within two months.
To put it another way, the order issued by the High Court mandates that each school calculate and adjust 15% of the total fees charged during the academic year 2020-21. Students who have dropped out of school are required to receive a refund of 15% of their tuition.
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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY AJAY ADITHIYAA N