The Supreme Court today issued notice to the office of Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena on a plea of the Delhi government against LG’s approval with riders to send government school teachers to Finland for training and prohibiting teachers from receiving foreign training in the future.
A bench of Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud and Justice JB Pardiwala sought a response from the office of LG on the Delhi government’s plea.
Advocate Shadan Farasat, appearing for the Delhi government, told the bench that it is clear that LG cannot take an independent decision in this regard and he can’t say that no such Finland training will be there in future.
In wake of the LG prohibiting government school teachers from receiving foreign training in the future and approving riders to send them to Finland for training, the Delhi government has approached the top court seeking direction to the LG to act on the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers.
On March 4, LG cleared some of the teachers for the Finland programme but was mandated against such exercises in future.
The plea sought direction for affirmation of the proposal sent by the Delhi government’s State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT) to send primary in-charge teachers at government schools in the national capital for training to Finland in the months of December 2022 and March 2023.
It further sought the quashing of LG’s order dated March 4, 2023, which was passed after an inordinate delay, thereby rendering the proposal completely infructuous.
The plea sought direction to “Set aside the order passed by LG on March 4, 2023, and affirm the proposal of the SCERT, Delhi government October 18, 2022.”
“The elected Government of the NCT of Delhi is constrained to file the present petition due to the unwarranted and deliberate delay caused by the Lieutenant Governor in approving the proposal sent by the SCERT to send primary in-charge teachers of government schools in Delhi for teacher’s training to Finland in the months of December 2022 and March 2023,” said the plea.
Additionally, LG’s observations seek to place an effective embargo upon conducting such programs in the future, the Delhi government said.
The Arvind Kejriwal led-AAP party government said that even though the aforesaid proposal was first submitted to the LG in October 2022, it was only approved — subject to several amendments and conditions — five months later i.e. on March 4, 2023, when it had become infructuous.
“While granting the approval, the LG has stated that such teachers trained in said program shall only become trainers in India and that in future, there was no need for such training programs to be conducted abroad, instead, they should be conducted within India. In this context, the Petitioner (Delhi government) is seeking a re-declaration of the well-settled position of law that the Governor is bound to act on the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers and has no independent decision-making power,” it added.
The AAP government accused LG of “rejecting” the proposal for the training programme at Finland. However, LG had given “approval” and noted that the Delhi government had refused to bring on record the “impact assessment of the foreign training programmes conducted in the past” by the Delhi Government.