The Delhi government on Friday ordered that no private school should increase fees during the Coronavirus lockdown and only the tuition fee can be charged till the time educational institutions reopen.

Announcing the same, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said that several complaints have been received about schools hiking fees and also levying charges like transport fee, which is not even being utilised during the lockdown.

No private school will be allowed to hike fees without seeking permission from the government. Schools also cannot charge beyond the tuition fee,” Sisodia said at a press conference.

Manish Sisodia, who is also the education minister of Delhi, clarified that charges such as transport fee, annual fee or any other miscellaneous head cannot be levied during the lockdown, which will continue till May 3.

“No school can charge three months’ tuition fee (at a time), the fee has to be collected monthly. Schools are mandated to pay salaries to their staff including the contractual ones. If they are short of funds, they can reach out to their parent organisation for funds.”

He added that no student’s access to online classes can be restricted, irrespective of fee payment.

Meanwhile, Congress leader Ajay Maken has slammed the AAP government for giving the go-ahead to private schools to charge one-month tuition fee and demanded that the state should bear major part of the expenses on salaries of their teachers.

“It is wrong to ask private schools to take a month’s fee. How will the parents pay the fee when there is a lockdown? The Delhi government should pay 75 per cent of expenses borne on teachers’ salaries so that these schools get relief and waive three-month fees,” the former Union Minister said.

In Delhi, 66 per cent children are enrolled in private schools.

Meanwhile, the Delhi government has announced to promote all the students from nursery to class 8 to the next class without examination. The students of the schools will be promoted under ‘no-detention policy’.

Earlier this month, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia turned counsellors for parents and children as they addressed their concerns regarding the COVID-19 lockdown, answering their questions through video-conferencing.

The over half-an-hour talk, titled ‘Parenting in the time of Corona’, saw the chief minister and the deputy CM answer a variety of queries, ranging from how can the parents answer questions from their children with regard to coronavirus and keep them engaged at home to whether the summer vacation will be curtailed and if the pending exams will be held after the lockdown is lifted.