The government has an affirmative obligation to facilitate access to professional education Supreme Court

The Supreme Court on Wednesday observed that the State has an affirmative obligation to facilitate access to education, at all levels.”While the right to pursue higher (professional) education has not been spelt out as a fundamental right in Part III of the Constitution, it bears emphasis that access to professional education is not a governmental largesse. Instead, the State has an affirmative obligation to facilitate access to education, at all levels,” a bench headed by Justice D Y Chandrachud said.

The court was hearing petitions by two students for directions to facilitate them to be admitted respectively at the Lady Hardinge Medical College, Delhi and the Maulana Azad Medical College, Delhi in terms of the policy and guidelines issued by the Centre on allocation of Ladakh Central Pool Seats in MBBS/BDS courses for 2020-21.The court ordered that the students be admitted within a week. It was government policy last November to allot one seat each at Lady Hardinge and Maulana Azad medical colleges from the Central pool.Financial hardship should not prevent students from getting admission in terms of the allocation which has been made in their favour legitimately under the central pool seats,” the bench remarked

As an empowerment right, education is the primary vehicle by which economically and socially marginalized adults and children can lift themselves out of poverty and obtain the means to participate fully in their communities.”The court also recommended the appointment of a nodal officer who will ensure that students who are duly nominated under the central pool seats are in fact admitted in their chosen course of study.

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