Reviving the hopes of anxious parents and the perplexed school authorities, the new Chief Justice of India R M Lodha said on Sunday that the issue pertaining to the nursery admission in Delhi schools was a “priority” matter and it may be decided on an urgent basis.
On the day he took over as the CJI, Justice Lodha said although he would not want to comment on a matter which is already pending in the Supreme Court, he would certainly inquire if the issue required vital attention in the wake of the concerns being raised.
“I would not want to comment upon sub-judice matter. Every judge is the master of his court. It is for them to consider how important a matter is if it is for the future of the children or their parents and hence requires the priority. It is for the concerned judge to think,” Justice Lodha said.
“Surely no Chief Justice can influence the decision-making process. However, for the Supreme Court, it is a priority matter. I will find out where it stands and if it needs to be given the topmost priority, it shall be given so,” the CJI assured.
Ushering in another spell of uncertainty and confusion for parents as well as schools, the apex court had on April 11 put on hold nursery admission — barely a week after the Delhi High Court’s nod. It stayed the directions on April 3, whereby the High Court had allowed resumption of the process, and confirmed the admission of those selected in the first draw of lots after scoring 70 points and more.
While parents of children who got admission in multiple schools were granted time till April 9 to choose one school, those who had sought to avail five points under the inter-state transfer (IST) quota, were asked to wait until April 16, the next date of hearing.
Admitting a petition by parents wanting to avail IST quota points, the SC had stalled the operation of the High Court and issued notices to the Delhi government.
This order acted as a virtual restraint on any further admissions in Delhi schools until another order is passed by the Supreme Court. Subsequently, when the matter came up for hearing in the High Court on April 16, the High Court refrained from touching the issue.
Later, the matter was mentioned before the Supreme Court for an urgent hearing and it agreed to take it up on April 28.