Many play schools, creches and day care centres have collectively moved the Supreme Court for help, saying the online mode of functioning does not work for them and they are in financial distress.
The Indian Council of Early Childhood Educators and Institutions, represented by advocate Rohit Pandey, has asked the court to intervene on its behalf with the government to provide financial succour through fresh loan moratorium and a temporary pause in the declaration of non-performing assets by banks.
The petition said the pandemic and the ensuing lockdown have hit them hard. Their establishments have remained closed. Funds have dried up. There is hardly money to keep afloat. Their staff are on the verge of unemployment.
“Play schools, unlike other higher education schools, cannot impart education through online mode to toddlers, who need a lot of movement and exploration like playing, learning good manners, etc. These are things that cannot really be done remotely, especially by having to sit and stare at a screen,” the petition said.
The plea said these schools have been shut down since March 2020, with the onset of the pandemic.
“Since then, there has been no constant income for the people running play schools, care centres, creches… Due to the lockdown scenario in the country because of COVID-19, it has become a real struggle issue to pay the monthly loan instalments,” the petition said.