These schools are in a class by themselves. Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) has issued a list of illegally run schools in its jurisdiction, which have not obtained any type of permission from authorities. The inventory has the names of 14 institutions. NMMC had issued a similar list of 16 schools last year too. 13 of them made the current edition.
NMMC did not take any action against the 16 schools listed last year and may remain passive this time as well. The corporation claimed it can just identify illegal schools in its jurisdiction and only the education officer of Thane Zilla Parishad can initiate action. However, the concerned education officer rejected NMMC’s claims.
‘No power to act’
After preparing the list, the corporation sent notices to these 14 schools, issuing warnings to them to stop operations or a fine of over Rs 1 lakh would be charged from each of them. After MiD DAY found that 13 schools pegged by NMMC in 2011 also made this year’s list, this reporter asked the deputy municipal commissioner of the corporation — who is also the education officer of Navi Mumbai — why no corrective measures were taken. He claimed that NMMC could not take action against these schools since it did not have the requisite powers.
“As per the state government’s guidelines, we can only pinpoint illegal schools in our area, but can not act without the permission of a district education officer. Since we did not get the authorisation of the education officer of Thane Zilla Parishad last year, the names of these 13 schools have cropped up again. Once we get the go-ahead from the Thane education officer, we will take the necessary steps against these institutions,” said Amrish Patnigire, deputy municipal commissioner and education officer of NMMC.
“How can I intervene against the schools located in Navi Mumbai, which has its own education officer? I can not initiate any action against those establishments,” said VR Jadhav, education officer of Thane Zilla Parishad. Management members of the schools in question, however, have claimed that they are not illegal. When MiD DAY visited one of them, Bhartiya Jagran school, there was no board on display proclaiming the name of the institution. “We acquired this school from Gurudas Seva Samiti trust two years ago, which used to run Bhartiya Jagran school. But we have got all the permissions from authorities to run this school — Adarsh school,” claimed RB Misra, who said he was the principal of Adarsh Vidyalaya.
Surprisingly, when this matter was brought to the notice of NMMC officials, they expressed their ignorance about the matter.Dharmaraj Mane, headmaster of Indrayani school, which has also made the list, said, “We had obtained this school from New Modern Education Society last year and sent the state government a proposal seeking permission. However, the state government changed its policy and we were asked to resubmit the application. So we sent the request again around a month back and we are likely to get the necessary permission in the next few days. But NMMC has already prepared its list.”
Illegal schools identified by NMMC in 2011 and 2012
>> Redcliffe school, Belapur
>> Right Way school, Nerul
>> Eden school, Nerul
>> Goodwill school, Shirvane
>> Freedom Fighter Maruti Kale school, Nerul
>> Saint Xavier school, Nerul
>> New City English school, Sanpada
>> Sri Ram Hindi school, Shirbvane
>> Sri Sai Jyoti English school
>> Bhartiya Jagran school (English)
>> Bhartiya Jagran school (Hindi)
>> Bhartiya Jagran school (Marathi)
>> Apex school, Gothivali
>> New addition to the list in 2012: Indrayani English school