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Teachers can’t be compelled to work for census, says High Court

The judgement was delivered by justices A S Oka and Revati Dhere recently on a petition filed by Ramnath Mote, a teacher employed with a school in Bhiwandi, who challenged the show-cause notice issued to him by Joint Census Commissioner. ‘It cannot be disputed that the work of sixth economic census (financed fully by Central government) has no connection with education,’ the judges observed.

‘The mandate of section 27 of Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act is no teachers shall be deployed for non educational purposes other than decennial population census, disaster relief duties or duties relating to elections to local authority or State Legislatures or Parliament as the case may be,’ the bench said.

The population census referred to in section 27 is the Census conducted under the provisions of Census Act, 1948, and Rules framed therein. This exercise was undertaken in 2011, the judges remarked.

Perusal of government resolution dated 25 September shows that sixth economic census has nothing to do with the Census under the Census Act, 1948.
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