The legal metrology department (LMD) on Monday imposed a fine of Rs 20,000 on Saint Joseph's higher secondary school Baramulla. The fine was imposed after the parents of the students enrolled in this institution registered a complaint against school and a book shop for selling text books and stationery items on exorbitant rates.
The school management was imposed a fine for not complying with the LMD (Packaged Commodities) rules, 2011 in the sale of stationary packages.
"The school was resorting to the restrictive trade practice by keeping the booklist available at a single book shop only," said legal metrology officer Baramulla Shah Suhaib.
Earlier, the team of officials headed by assistant controller LMD Baramulla Mudasir Rashid visited Saint Joseph's school and Valley Book Shop to cross check the complaints registered by the parents.
"During the inspection, we found that the school management had flashed an SMS to the parents of students and informed them that books will remain available with a particular book shop," Suhaib said, adding that the stationary packages offered by the book shop were found to be lacking the statutory labeling requirements.
Shah Suhaib said they booked a case against the management of the Saint Joseph's higher secondary school Baramulla institution and the book shop.
"But as the team was conducting the inspection at book shop, the school management had flashed fresh SMS to parents and conveyed them that the text books are available at four book shops," he said.
He said the school admitted the lapse and thereby rectified the lapse of restrictive trade practice. "A fine of Rs. 20,000 was collected from the schools in the instant case," he said.
Earlier, the parents had registered their compliant with chief education officer (CEO) Baramulla against illegal profiteering of the school management by compelling them to purchase text books from one particular book shop.
Also, the district administration had also received a complaint from the parents against the open fleecing by the school.
The schools across Kashmir are in news for fleecing parents and compelling them to purchase text books and school uniforms form specific book shops.