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December 21, 2011

Campaigners go to court to make education free for all

Sports

AFP
December 21, 2011

Karachi
A division bench of the Sindh High Court comprising Justice Maqbool Baqar and Justice Imam Bux Baloch will be hearing the plea of the representatives of workers and civil society on a constitutional petition that questioned the negligence of the state and the government towards the “right to education for all children” in Pakistan.
The division bench has issued notices to the respondent Sindh Education Department to file comments and fixed January 26, 2012, as the next date of hearing. Various civil society organisations, through advocate Faisal Siddiqui, have argued in their petition that under Article 25-A of the 1973 Constitution, the state is bound to provide compulsory education to all children from five to 16 years of age. And following the passage of the 18th Amendment, education has now become a right and no longer an arbitrary entitlement.
Filed on behalf of the Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research, the Aurat Publication and Information Service Foundation, the Pakistan Fisher Folk Forum, the South Asia Partnership Pakistan, the Institute of Social Movements Pakistan, the Bonded Labour Liberation Front, the National Trade Union Federation and the Bright Educational Society, the petition has made the Sindh government as respondent.
The petitioners have prayed to the court to declare that the respondent (Sindh government) is under the constitutional obligation to provide free and compulsory education to all children from five to 16 years age.
The petition has also sought a direction to the provincial government to establish a commission, comprising well reputed members of civil society and government officials, to monitor the implementation of the constitutional obligation of the respondent and to publish a detailed programme of measures to be taken by them to implement Article 25A.

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