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Maharashtra govt approves 15% fee cut in private schools; to release circular soon

10:53 PM Jul 28, 2021 | Sanjay Jog

Mumbai: Paying heed to the rising demand from parents in the current pandemic situation, the Maharashtra Cabinet on Wednesday has finally approved a 15 percent cut in the fees charged by private school fees in the state for 2021-22. The state cabinet had given its go-ahead at its meeting on July 14 but on Wednesday, the minutes were confirmed. The government is expected to issue a circular in a day or two on 15 percent reduction in fees charged by private schools. To avoid legal issues, the government will not promulgate an ordinance or government resolution.

The cabinet decision was confirmed by School Education Minister Varsha Gaikwad. However, the release issued by the Chief Minister’s Office on cabinet decisions did not include the one on the 15 percent reduction in private school fees.

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A senior cabinet minister told The Free Press Journal, “The school education department had received an opinion from the Advocate General, especially after the recent Supreme Court judgment in May, in which it had ordered the Rajasthan schools to collect 15 percent reduced fees in 2020-21. The cabinet was divided over the school education department’s proposal to promulgate an ordinance to implement a 15 percent cut in fees of private schools. However, a section of the ministers argued that it might set a precedent and land the government in trouble.” Further, he said, some ministers suggested that the government resolution could be issued but it could create legal issues.

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“Therefore, it was decided to issue a circular, which is likely to be issued on Thursday’’, said another minister.

The parents of students in private schools had recently urged Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Varsha Gaikwad for a 15 percent waiver in fees from 2019 to 2021, after the SC ordered a fee reduction in Rajasthan.

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