Anyone opposed to online classes is anti-India: Bombay High Court

Anyone opposed to online classes is anti-India: Bombay High Court

Narsi BenwalUpdated: Thursday, July 09, 2020, 12:42 AM IST
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In what could mean bad news for students opposing e-learning (online classes), the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court on Monday said that if any citizen questions the state government’s decision to encourage e-learning, it would be tantamount to acting against the ``interest and well-being” of the nation. The High Court made the strong observation while dealing with a PIL punching holes in the standard operating procedure (SOP) to start online classes.

A bench of Justices Sunil Shukre and Shreeram Modak said e-learning would help India become stronger in the field of digital education.

"Today, we are in the 21st century where the world is being governed digitally in a greater way, and therefore, the SOP which prescribes e-learning and promotes digital and virtual methods of learning cannot but be hailed as a big progressive measure taken by the government in making the digital position of India stronger and firmer in the Comity of Nations," Justice Shukre observed.

"If the SOP encourages e-learning, any citizen of India questioning its intentions and purposes would only be acting against the interest and well-being of his own country," the judges held.

 The bench further said that if a citizen, however, comes across some issues in effective implementation of the SOP, "for that matter his duty would be to point out the same to the concerned authority, so that necessary corrective measures are taken," the judges said.

 The judges were dealing with a petition filed by one Imran Shaikh challenging the June 15 SOPs issued by the government for conducting online classes. The plea claimed the SOPs were irrational.

However, the judges noted the fact that Shaikh did not place on record any material which would highlight the inherent contradictions, defects and lacunae in the SOPs, "hence there is no case of violation of any fundamental right to education."

The judges ordered Shaikh to approach the relevant authorities "with judicially admissible proof."

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