The Calcutta High Court on Tuesday stayed enrolment for the two-year diploma in elementary education (D.El.Ed) course, the notification for which was issued by the West Bengal Board of Primary Education (WBBPE) on December 28 last year.
Immediately after the notification was issued, a public interest litigation (PIL) was filed before a division bench of Chief Justice Prakash Srivastava and Justice Rajarshi Bharadwaj alleging massive irregularities in the enrolment process.
The petitioner said that the notification, issued on December 28, held that interested candidates willing to enroll for the D.El.Ed course for 2021-23 will be able to fill up the forms between January 2 and January 6, but questioned the justification of the notification for an academic year which has already completed three-fourth of its time.
In his petition, the petitioner also pointed out that in the notification issued by the board on December 28, the application fee has been fixed at Rs 3,000. However, as per norms for general category candidates, the application fee is just Rs 300 and the same is Rs 150 for reserved category candidates.
After hearing both sides, the bench questioned the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) representative about the minimum days of class attendance mandatory for the course. After the NCTE representative quoted the number at 200, the division bench expressed surprise on how that could be completed in the remaining few months of the academic year for which the fresh notification has been issued.
The bench also questioned the justification of quoting a high application fee and thereafter, stayed the enrolment process.
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