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St Columba’s loses recognition

Wednesday, 21 June 2006 - 11:28pm IST

According to directorate officials, the school was penalised because it diverted Rs1.83 crore raised as school fees to its parent body.

The Capital’s prestigious St Columba’s School, alma mater to the likes of Shah Rukh Khan and Rahul Gandhi, has been derecognised by the directorate of education of Delhi government for diverting school funds to its parent body.

According to directorate officials, the school has diverted Rs1.83 crore raised as school fees to its parent body. The derecognition comes into effect from the next academic year.

Although the Delhi School Education Act allows the management committee of a school to use its funds to set up another school, a 1999 HC order had put a bar on the diversion of money to another body, be it the parent society running it, or another school.

The Supreme Court in 2004 upheld the HC order after some schools appealed against the HC verdict.

The directorate found out last year that the school was violating the HC ruling by diverting the funds to the Congregation of Christian Brothers of India, its parent body.

The school diverted Rs53 lakh to the congregation in 2002-03. In 2003-04, another Rs71 lakh was diverted to the parent body. In 2004-05, the school diverted Rs59 lakh. The school authorities were unavailable for comment.

Meanwhile, the news of derecognition has shocked students. "After derecognition what would happen to us? We will have to look for another school," said Aakash Srivastava, a class IX student. His father is worried too. "Getting admissions nowadays is so difficult, where would my son go?" said Sanjeev Srivastava, his father.

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