The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has recommended a criminal case be registered against the National Public School group of institutions in Bengaluru, accusing them of using fraud to dodge Right to Education (RTE) regulations. 

 

As per the RTE Act, 25% of the total seats available in a school has to be reserved for students from underprivileged and economically weak backgrounds. Such students cannot be charged capitation fees or donation and are admitted based on government reservation quotas. They can also not be failed or held back. The government of India will provide some compensation to private institutions for taking up these students, but their admission is compulsory.  

 

Institutions which are accorded a Minority Status are exempt from this requirement, which is otherwise compulsory for all private education institutions. 

 

However, National Public School has been accused of procuring fake documents and certificates to get itself the status of a minority institution, despite not meeting the criteria for the same. The allegation is that the institution did this to circumvent RTE regulations. 

 

On 21 June, the CBSE had asked the governing council of National Public School to submit various original documents that are related to the allegations against it. The management of the school claimed that it had already replied to the CBSE, in the wake of the allegations. 

 

But not being satisfied with the replies of the school, CBSE officials have instructed the State Public Education (SPE) department to file a criminal case against the school.

 

The National Public School council manages six educational institutions in several areas of Bengaluru – Rajajinagar, Koramangala, Chickbaanavara, HAL, HSR layout and Indiranagar. They also have branches in across states in the country.


Based on the directive from the CBSE, when an SPE departmental officer initiated action, sources say that a minister called the official concerned, asking him not to take action.


The publication Kannada Prabha tried to contact Soujanya, the Commissioner of the Public Education Department but received no response to their queries. 


Declining to react on the allegations, Dr Gopalkrishna, founder of the institution, said that the matter would be dealt with legally. He also denied that the institution had created any fake documents.