CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Friday granted an interim stay to a recent amendment that imposed property tax on private educational institutions. The division bench of Justices S Manikumar and Subramonium Prasad, were hearing a petition by the All India Private Educational Institutions Association that challenged the amendment made to the municipal laws in January.
The bench granted interim stay and directed the court registry to club the petition along with similar petitions pending in the high court over the same matter. The private schools contended that imposing property tax on private educational institutions was illegal since they were only offering a right that is guaranteed in the Constitution.
“In a common level playing field, there cannot be any discrimination between government schools and private schools, as the ultimate goal of the Constitution is free and fair education,” argued E Vijay Anand, counsel of the private schools association. The association also argued that education was a “charitable occupation”, and the private schools were run with “non-profit” purpose.