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Large Number Of Private Schools Turn Into ‘Business Houses’

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JK News Live

Large number of private schools turn into ‘business houses’

Srinagar: Like previous years, large number of private schools in Kashmir have again allegedly turned into “business houses”, forcing parents to buy school uniforms for students at exorbitant rates from specific shops.

The parents complained that the private schools, particularly the top- notch institutions, have kept the uniforms available at specific shops, in violation of set norms of the competent authorities.

Notably the educational institutions reopened for routine schooling in March and the winter uniform was not made mandatory for school children.

The management of the private schools asked the students to attend their schools in proper uniform for the summer season but the parents have been asked to purchase the uniforms from the specific shops at Regal Chowk or Court Road Srinagar.

The aggrieved parents complained that the School Education Department (SED) which was supposed to ban this illegal profiteering by schools has failed to act against these erring schools accused of fleecing parents under the garb of providing education.

“The uniform set (Pant and Shirt) kept available at a specific shop costs Rs 1000 while the same set of uniform cost only Rs 400 to Rs 500 in the open market,” said Bilal Ahmad, a parent from Srinagar.

These complaints pour in every year after the commencement of the new academic year. These days there is again a public outcry against these private schools for indulging in illegal practice with the arrival of the new (summer) academic session. “Unfortunately, this public outcry will not reach the competent authorities and will die until the next season,” the parent said.

The parents complained that the specific shops where the uniform enjoy monopoly over rate and leave no scope for parents to bargain the price.

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“Obviously when the items are available at a specific shop they sell it at a fixed price. They earn huge profit in it and the school gets its share out of it as well,” said Furqan Ahmad, another parent from Srinagar.

The parents said the “uniform business” was a nexus between the shopkeeper and the concerned school and accused the Directorate of the School Education Kashmir (DSEK) of allowing fleecing of parents.

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