Schools ‘forcing’ parents to buy textbooks from specific shops will face action: J&K Govt

The School Education Department (SED) assured action against the private schools for forcing parents to purchase textbooks for kids from specific bookshops.

Director School Education Kashmir (DSEK) Tasaduq Hussain Mir, while speaking to media persons on the sidelines of a function here, said the department will initiate action against any private schools who will keep their textbooks available at specific shops.

“If any parent has any specific complaint he should come forward and register his grievance with the concerned CEO or with the Directorate. Action will be taken as per law against the erring schools,” the DSEK said.

The assurance comes in wake of the complaints of the unfair trade practice of private schools in nexus with the book sellers continues to go unchecked in the Valley.

The parents complain that they were being coerced into buying textbooks from a specific bookshop, who were charging almost double the actual price for the books. The parents further claimed that the quality of these books was substandard, and did not meet the prescribed standards.

With the commencement of the new academic session, most of the private schools functioning in the city have kept the text books for school children available at specific bookshops adjacently located to the institutions.

Such practices continue despite the circular instructions issued by the school education department to the private schools directing them to refrain from keeping textbooks and uniforms of students available at specific shops.

The aggrieved parents have been left in a quandary as the school education department has failed to control this restrictive and unfair trade practice.

Meanwhile, the DSEK said the government has already directed the private schools to prescribe JKBOSE published textbooks to the students from class 6th onwards and any violation in that will be dealt with strictly.

“There are clear directions to private schools to adopt JKBOSE books. We were earlier concentrating on exams but now the appointment of JKBOSE chairman is also done as well. We will ensure that there is no violation of government norms,” Mir said.