Charging Admission fee

In the human history, evolution in all walks of life has happened through the mesmerizing, magnanimous and magical medium of education. Education and literacy brought out Plato’s “Dark-cave” man to the glittering level of our present day Scientists, Academicians and Philosophers.  Education has been the medium used by Prophets. Human being has ascended to moral and intellectual zenith through the medium of Education. Imparting education has been, and is, the most noble job. Educationists and teachers, after parents, are the first and foremost torch bearers of the society. Darkness signifies illiteracy and glittering light represents Education and literacy.

The above thoughts came to mind in view of reports which have appeared in a section of press. The editors of these newspapers, seem to be moralists, who want societal growth on sound moral principles. Some newspapers have adverted their attention to a subject of great public importance. Even editorials have been written.

Many people responsible to the society, in view of change in value system, have put the “Education and our children” on back-burner. Providing quality and good education to children has to be the foremost concern of every conscientious person.

To make a home, a society, or a nation a better place for all, we have to give education and health top most priority in running our societal affairs. “The Fee Fixation and Regulation Committee” is one cog in the wheel of State.

An abominable practice, contrary to the very foundations of the moral values, in the field of education, has been the charging of “Admission Fee” by some private schools while registering a child on their rolls. Charging “abominable fee” on an available berth in the school, is in literal terms putting a price tag on the “Class Seat”, that is paid by both willing and un-willing parents. This transaction converts a noble mission into commercial one.

This has evil fall outs on the society. Some people in order to pay “Hefty Admission Fee” must be amassing wealth by adopting all kinds of illegal means. The good economy of the State, thus gets converted into bad economy. Yet another fall out of this deplorable practice is depriving quality education to the members of marginalized sections of the society.

Money power thus creates two unbridgeable classes in the society, and in the process we create a society where “ Jungle Laws” prevail.

The courts, and the state, have responded to this burning issue by passing orders and legislating laws respectively. The admission fee is specifically barred by statutes.

Some schools who had charged admission fee, in pursuance to orders of Fee Fixation and Regulation Committee (FFRC)(Order No 03 of 2020, Dated 13 November 2020) have returned the amount to the parents. It is hoped that school authorities will stop this abominable practice of charging of admission fee, or shall have to suffer the penal consequences. It is hoped that where school managements have charged admission fee and parents have not complained to FFRC, will return the amount so charged to the parents.

Fee structure of schools will be regulated on the well established principles of Justice, Reasonableness and Equity.

Justice Muzaffar Hussain Attar, former Judge, is  Chairman Fee Fixation and Regulation Committee (FFRC) J&K