News-Bulletin

WHETHER THE RIGHT TO GET EDUCATION IN MOTHER TONGUE IS A FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT OR NOT – RAJASTHAN HIGH COURT 

While entertaining a plea filed by the SCHOOL DEVELOPMENT AND MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE of a Jodhpur based school, which was a challenge to government’s decision to change the Petitioner’s school from a Hindi medium to an English medium school, the Rajasthan High Court carried forward an examination of the question if education in mother tongue is a fundamental right.  The case relates to Shri Hari Singh Sr. Sec. School, Pilwa which caters to educational needs of the nearby villages since 1980 in Hindi Medium. In September 2021, Director, Secondary Education allowed the conversion of 345 Government run schools to English Medium Schools, including Shri Hari Singh Sr. Sec. School. The sanction was challenged and the first observation of the Court was that the present question relates to Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution which empowers a child, or on his/her behalf, his/her parent(s) to choose the language in which the child should be imparted education. Supreme Court’s judgment in 2014 was made the basis wherein it was held that the right to be educated in mother tongue or a particular medium is guaranteed by Ar. 19(1)(a), subject to reasonable restrictions. However, the Court opined that State can, in furtherance development of child and in consideration of socioeconomic factors, prescribe a medium of instruction. The Bench also made reference to the Right to Education Act, which, under Section 29(2)(f), confers the statutory right of having the elementary education in mother tongue. Having considered all the law points involved and the statutes concerned, the court concluded that English cannot be thrusted upon the students as the Medium of education. Therefore, the decision of the State government was quashed while upholding the fundamental right of the child to attain the education in a particular medium under Article 19(1)(a) of Indian Constitution.  

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