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Karnataka HC quashes state govt orders restricting online classes: Report

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The Karnataka High Court on Wednesday passed an interim order staying the state government’s orders which placed restrictions on online classes, reported LiveLaw. At the same time, the court clarified that school authorities do not have a right to make online classes compulsory, and children who do not opt for it should not be deprived of normal education, as and when schools are able to resume education.

Additionally, the order reportedly clarified that schools cannot charge extra fees for conducting online classes either. It was passed by a division bench of Chief Justice A.S. Oka and Justice Nataraj Rangaswamy. “Prima facie we are of the view that both orders of June 15 and June 27, encroached upon the Fundamental Right conferred by Article 21 and 21A of the Constitution,” the order said, per LiveLaw.

The state government’s June 15 order said that schools should not impart online education until the expert committee constituted by the government submitted its report on the viability of online classes. Later, the government amended its order allowing online classes for children in Lower KG to Class X for limited hours.

Stating that the state had no “rational basis” to place restrictions, the court said that just because the state cannot extend online education to certain category of schools, it is not a ground to prevent ‘elite’ schools from carrying out online classes. The state government’s rationale was that if certain students take classes, the others will be left out.

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