13 Apr : In the wake of a fire in a Tamil Nadu school which claimed 90 lives, the Supreme Court on Monday directed all government and private schools to ensure safety of school buildings before granting recognition or affiliation to them.
Before granting recognition or affiliation to the schools, the states, union territories must ensure "that the buildings are safe and secured from every angle and they are constructed according to the safety norms incorporated in the National Building Code, 2005", the apex court said in a judgement.
A two-judge bench of Justices Dalveer Bhandari and Lokeshwar Singh Panta said it should be mandatory for the authorities to ensure periodical evaluation of the structures and installation of fire extinguishing equipments in each school befeore granting them safety certification.
"Dereliction in duty must attract immediate disciplinary action against the concerned officials,"the bench said while directing the states and union territories to file compliance report of its direction with one month "after installation of fire extinguishing equipments.
The bench passed the directions while disposing off a PIL filed by Avinash Mehrotra seeking such guidelines in the aftermath of the infamous Lord Krishna Middle School fire tragedy in Tamil Nadu’s Kumbakonam district in which 90 children perished on 15th July, 2004.