HC Snubs Plea to Allow Free Travel for All Students

Aanavandi a private blog developed and maintained by Sujith Bhakthan & Team, with the goal of providing information about various public transport services in Kerala, including Kerala RTC services.

The Kerala High Court on Friday declined to interfere in a petition seeking to provide free transportation to students in private buses and KSRTC buses operating in the State, under the Right to Education Act.

A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice A M Shaffique issued the order on the petition filed by Haridas of Kochi. The petitioner contended that all school students were entitled to free travel under the Right to Education Act.

The State Government submitted that students had been allowed 75 per cent concession in private buses, and that the KSRTC was also giving then concession.

The KSRTC stated that on account of providing concessions, it had been incurring a loss of `50 crore every year.

The Bench pointed out that the concept of free travel was absolutely a policy decision of the government. “The court cannot issue a directive to provide free transportation to students, and thereby cause financial loss to the operators,” stated the court.