Raisen: School says no to admitting child of Dalit, single-mother, also a district Child Welfare Committee member

Suneeta Arya from Raisen complains to collector, vows to fight for her child’s rights

SmitaUpdated: Monday, July 04, 2022, 06:43 PM IST
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Suneeta Arya | FPJ

Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): As a member of the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) of the Raisen district, Suneeta Arya has the responsibility of protecting the rights of children. Ironically, however, she is finding it difficult to protect the right to education of her own child.

A school in Gairatganj (Raisen district) has refused admission to her daughter (7) allegedly because Sunita happens to be a ‘Dalit and a single mother’. Suneeta has complained to the district collector against the school. “I will go to any extent to protect the rights of my child.” she told the Free Press over phone.

According to her, she visited the Gurukul Excellent English Medium School at Gairatganj on July 1 for the admission of her daughter. She was told that the child would be admitted to Class 1. She was given details about the fees to be paid and the documents to be submitted.

The list of documents included details about the child’s father. She told the person concerned that she was a single mother and saw no reason why she should be required to submit the documents of the child’s father. She also told them that she belongs to a Dalit caste.

“The moment I revealed these two facts, their attitude changed. I was told to come the next day,” she said.

When Suneeta visited the school the next day (July 2), she was informed that all the seats in the school were full. “I was taken aback and said that I wanted to meet the director of the school, Anil Maheshwari. When I met him, he told me that we cannot admit the children of ‘such parents’ in our school,” she said.

Suneeta says that she is in possession of all the relevant documents, including birth certificate, Aadhar card and Samagra ID of the child. “They cannot say no to admitting my child because I am a single mother and a Dalit. This is unjust, illegal and unconstitutional,” she said.

She has also filed a complaint with the Raisen collector on Monday.

School principal pleads ignorance

Manish Kumar Soni, Principal of Gurukul Excellent English Medium School, Gairatganj told Free Press that he was not aware of any such incident. “I was on leave and I have rejoined only today,” he said. He promised a statement from the school director Anil Maheshwari whom Sunita met in the school, but did not offer any comments till the time story was filed.

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