VIJAYAWADA: The Andhra Pradesh High Court on Wednesday struck down GO No.85 issued by the State government making English medium mandatory in all government schools from Classes 1 to VI terming it unconstitutional and violative of several Acts, including the Right to Education Act.
The State government said it would go through the judgement copy and move the Supreme Court if necessary. A division bench comprising Chief Justice GK Maheswari and Justice N Jayasurya delivered the 92-page verdict on a batch of petitions filed by BJP leader Sudhir Rambhotla, Dr Srinivas, and advocate Indraneel challenging the validity of the GO and PILs filed by several parents committees supporting the GO.
The government had issued the orders on November 20, 2019 to introduce English medium in all government schools from Class I to Class VI from this academic year. After hearing arguments of both sides and the government, the bench had reserved its verdict on February 14. It found no merit in the argument that English medium was made mandatory due to demands from parents.
Govt to study HC verdict, move SC
Delivering the verdict, the bench described as strange the government submission that it will ensure a Telugu medium school in each mandal and found no merit in its argument that English medium was made mandatory due to demands from parents. “Parents cannot decide in which language children should be taught. The GO is against the Constitution, several judgements of the Supreme Court and the Right to Education Act,” it said and added that it was also against the New Education Policy, and State Reorganisation Commission report. “As per the Education Policy, medium of instruction should be the mother tongue up to Class VIII,” it pointed out and observed that great leaders like Sarvepalli Radhakrishna, Gandhi, and Vivekananda were schooled in their mother tongue. Education Minister Audimulapu Suresh, speaking to the press, accused the TDP of politicising the verdict and reiterated that the government intention was to bring English medium within the reach of the poor. He said the government will go through the judgement copy and file an appeal in the Supreme Court if necessary.