Midday meals students
(Representative image)REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

The Karnataka government, on Wednesday, was directed by the state high court to provide a second set of uniforms, a pair of shoes and two pairs of socks to students of the government school. This was done after the Karnataka High Court was touched by a PIL filed by Manjunath, an eight-year-old from Koppal, in northern Karnataka.

The PIL was filed in January by Manjunath who was studying in class 3 at the time and is now in class 4. The PIL, filed by Manjunath's father, read that the monetary provision for the second set of uniforms were not given for the academic year.

Under subsections 1 and 2 of Section 3 of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act (RTE), 2009, students between the ages 6 and 14 are not required to pay anything that may prevent him or her from pursuing and completing their elementary education, Times of India reports

Moved by the PIL, a division bench headed by chief justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka asked the state government to give Manjunath his uniform along with socks and shoes.

The court went on to give the state government two months time to provide every eligible student a second set of uniform and a pair of socks and shoes if they are part of the uniform. The bench was surprised that this wasn't already done since a government order dated June 30, 2018 was passed to provide a second set of uniforms for the academic year 2018-19.

"We fail to understand how the government feels that only one uniform will do. The state cannot expect a student to wear the same uniform for five to six days each week. It is not only arbitrary and irrational but also unhygienic," the bench said.