Emergency-era shift of education to concurrent list challenged | India News


CHENNAI: Challenging the Emergency-era constitutional amendment shifting education from the state list to the concurrent list, senior advocate Kapil Sibal argued in the Madras high court on Tuesday that health and education were two fundamental attributes of humans and both should be under absolute control of states. The amendment is a legislative invasion against parents, children and the state’s right, he said.
“Parliament can regulate the standard of education, but it cannot decide as to what children of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh or Kerala should learn. It cannot decide the curriculum,” the advocate stated.
Regarding the attempt to bring uniformity in education through National Education Policy, he said: “Uniformity has nothing to do in education. Uniformity is antithesis to nature.”
“The Centre can only coordinate and determine the standard of education, nothing more than that. Putting education in concurrent list is not to completely take over the subject but only to coordinate and determine the standard,” he argued.
Earlier, senior advocate NR Elango contended that the framers of the Constitution had envisaged that education must be in the state list. But the amendments have been made without even any discussion and it directly infringes on the state’s sovereignty.
“Education in its nature and purpose is historically a state subject. Changing it will certainly affect the federalism of the country,” Elango stated. Recording the submissions, a full bench of justices R Mahadevan, M Sundar and Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy adjourned the hearing to December 9. The arguments were made on a PIL moved by NGO Aram Seyya Virumbu Trust.


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