Schools defy PFA’s orders of installing water filtration plants
LAHORE: The representatives of private schools on Wednesday pleaded to the Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) to take notice of one of the orders passed by the Supreme Court (SC) barring the private schools from carrying out educational activities in the cantonment boards of the country.
As per the details, private schools from the platform of the All Pakistan Private Schools Management Association (APPSMA) requested the CJP to grant some relief to the private schools as different cantonment boards have started serving notices to the owners of private schools to vacate the premises of the cantonment areas following the judgment of the apex court that was given in a case on October 24, last year. A story was published in Pakistan Today on February 18, 2018, in which the whole episode of barring the private schools from cantonment areas was narrated in detail.
Addressing a press conference at the Lahore Press Club (LPC) on Wednesday, the president of APPSMA Kashif Adeeb Jawadani said that the private schools were sharing the burden of the state by imparting quality education to the children, and the dream of the government to achieve a 100 percent literacy rate by 2025 could not be materialised without the support of these private schools.
“As many as 0.3 million teachers will be left unemployed if more than 30,000 private schools are closed in 46 cantonment boards countrywide,” Jawdani said while adding that the judgment of the apex court came in a case that was litigation between two individuals, but the whole community was being affected by the orders of the SC. It is worth mentioning here that the Supreme Court gave a judgment on October 24, 2017, in a 15-year old case in which a petitioner had moved the court against the commercial activities in the cantonment board of Rawalpindi.
“After launching the operations Zarb-e-Azb and Rad-ul-Fasad, the chief of army staff should launch another operation named ‘Rad-e-Jahalat’ (eradication of illiteracy) and all the private schools will become a part of this operation on war footings,” said Jadwani.
It is important to note that several cantonment boards including the Lahore Cantonment Board, Rawalpindi Cantonment Board, Chaklala Cantonment Board and Cantonment Board of Quetta have issued notices to several private schools located in their respective vicinity to vacate the premises at a time when the final exams are just around the corner.
PRIVATE SCHOOLS VS PUNJAB FOOD AUTHORITY:
Meanwhile, the private schools have also shown defiance against the orders issued by the Punjab Food Authority (PFA) to install water filtration plants in every educational institution by April 30. “We are already fed up with the continuous crackdowns of the PFA in our canteens and now they are asking us to install water filtration plants that would cost us millions,” president of APPSMA from Punjab Wahid Ahmed said.
He added that the Water and Sanitation Agency (WASA) was charging the private schools a huge amount and had also imposed new tariffs despite the fact that private schools were already paying 25 different taxes to the government.
“We’ll not install water filtration plants on our own as it is the duty of the state to provide us clean drinking water,” he said.
We would not let any government official enter the premises of the private schools for checking if the government tries to impose its orders forcefully, he added.