Move to withdraw grant unjustified
The withdrawal of grant-in-aid to the PTA teachers engaged in schools situated in the urban or municipal areas was not sustainable being unjustified and discriminatory in nature. Himachal Pradesh High Court
The HP High Court stated this while dismissing the appeal of the government, which had challenged the decision of a Single Judge Bench declaring as illegal the action of the state to deny the benefit of grant-in aid to the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) teachers, who are serving in schools situated in the jurisdictional areas of municipal corporations, municipal committees and nagar panchayats.
While dismissing the appeal, a Division Bench comprising Justice Vivek Singh Thakur and Justice Sandeep Sharma observed that "the state is not able to dispute the fact that the benefit of grant-in-aid has already been extended to various government schools, 95 per cent aided private schools and colleges situated in urban areas and thus, the withdrawal of such grant-in-aid to the PTA teachers engaged in schools situated in the urban or municipal areas was not sustainable being unjustified and discriminatory in nature."
The state has implemented Grant-in-Aid to Parent Teacher Association Rules, 2006, for providing grant-in-aid to the PTA teachers serving in all schools of the state. However, through communication issued on August 27, 2007, the benefit thereof was declared inadmissible to the PTA teachers.
The court observed that despite repeated directions to the state to post regular teachers in schools, successive governments, irrespective of the persons in power, had failed to appoint regular teachers. Under compelling circumstances, the PTAs were constrained to engage teacher(s) to save the future of children.
The court found the PTA teachers were the same and the classification amongst them was not intelligible. The PTA teachers in urban as well as rural areas were appointed for identical reasons and perform an identical job with an equal degree of accountability and responsibility. The court observed that "we find no illegality, irregularity or perversity in the impugned judgment assailed in this appeal. Rather, we are in agreement with the reasons assigned by the single Judge Bench and we reiterate that the single Judge Bench had rightly quashed the communication issued on August 27, 2007".