School Building
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This article is written by Harsh Amit Bhatt, pursuing a Certificate Course in Real Estate Laws from LawSikho.com. Here he discusses “Five Specific Permissions Required to Construct a School Building in Mumbai”.

Introduction

The population in India is increasing at a very fast pace. The last four to five decades have especially seen tremendous growth in the human population. To make this new generation efficient, educating the new generation is the key for the bright future of our country. Schools in India will play a very significant role in empowering children to maximize their potential which will influence reform in the future generation in India. The need for schools all over India is very high. If a person wants to get into the system of education now is the right time to do so. While there is a huge demand for schools, the numbers of schools aren’t enough to meet the demand. Therefore there is a huge market open to the private players to up the standards in not only creating the volumes but also helping to improve the quality of education. But, a lot of people must be pondering the idea to start a school and many of them would be skeptical about the requirement of permissions and licenses to start a school in India. This article will list out the five (5) important permission which will be required to start a school in Mumbai.

  • Formation of Society / Trust / Section 8 Company 

In India, schools are considered as a non- profit initiative. As per law, a private organization cannot open a school in India. The school has to be operated by the society according to the Societies Act 1860, or a trust that has been created under the Public Trust Act as per the states.

A private entity willing to set up a school in India can form a company under section 8 of the companies act, all the above legislations ensure that school is set up as a non – profit making body.

All the above laws state that the entity willing to set open the school needs to create a Society, Trust or a Section 8 company which comprises of governing board that has five to six members. These all entities have a president, a secretary, and a chairman who are officially announced.

There is more to establish a school then setting up a Society, Trust or a Section 8 company in India, setting up an infrastructure that comprises classrooms, laboratories, computing labs, and library. The entity willing to establish the school needs to get the licenses and permissions from the relevant authorities.

  • Procurement of land or Change of land use document on which the school building is going to be established  

In case if the entity wants to buy land from the government for the school the entity will first require to procure no objection certificate (NOC) which is also referred to as the Essentiality Certificate (EC) from the Mumbai University which is the department of the education in Mumbai. Which is formed under the Bombay University Act, 1953. The Essentiality Certificate is issued by the Directorate of Education (DOE). An Essentiality Certificate is an important document that certifies the requirement of a school in a particular zone. The Directorate of Education (DOE) checks the requirement of school in a particular area by inspecting a particular zone and accordingly finalize the license. The No objection certificate from the Directorate of Education (DOE) makes sure that particular zone has a proper balance of schools. After obtaining Essentiality Certificate (EC) from the Directorate of Education (DOE) the entity shall start the construction of building the school within 3 years of obtaining the Essentiality Certificate if it fails to do so then the particular entity have to reapply to the Directorate of Education (DOE) for Essentiality Certificate (EC).

After obtaining an Essentiality Certificate (EC) from the Directorate of Education (DOE) the concerned entity can then go to the Municipal corporation of greater Bombay (MCGM) which is also called Bombay Municipal corporation (BMC) for procuring the land after receiving  Essentiality Certificate (EC). According to the law, the Municipal Corporation of Greater Bombay (MCGM) has to provide the land to the entity at the subsidized rates. 

In case of any member of the entity has his land and wants to build a school over there, that individual will be required to get the No objection certificate (NOC) from the state department of education. The landowner has to provide in writing to the Directorate of Education (DOE) about his intent and requirement of school in the area where they want to set up the school on the application for No objection certificate (NOC). After obtaining the NOC the landowner shall file an application before the district collector office of Mumbai for change of land use certificate. The collector will then within 7 days acknowledge the application and send a copy of the application to the tehsildar or the revenue clearance and technical clearance. Within a month tehsildar will investigate in the title of the land certify the revenue clearance and technical clearance and give a clearance report to the collector. The collector then will issue an order for conversion of land by paying a prescribed fee. As the conversion of land for educational purposes is exempt from tax the applicant will not have to pay tax for the conversion of land, the collector will issue a certificate for the conversion of land with certain conditions. And the collector will order the tehsildar to change the particulars of land by making necessary entries. After the entries are made as and will be granted to the holder of land which will include an agreement between the holder of land and the government stating the conditions for a change of land use. Sanad is the evidence of the land title. 

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  • Approved site plan for the school building and certificate of recognition

To obtain the approval of the site plan for the school building and certificate of recognition an affidavit has to be submitted to MCGM/BMC stating the details of the site plan of the building of the school with all relevant documents such as purchase of land or ownership, along with the master plan of land stating that there is no violation of master plan for the use of land and no encroachment has been done during the construction of the building. After filing the affidavit within 60 days the inspection of the site will be done by the inspectors of the MCGM/BMC and provide the certificate of recognition, it is a certificate issued by the municipal authority to get the school recognized in a particular area. It states the existence, the validity of the school in a particular area.

  • Affiliation and other formalities

The school has to get affiliate itself with the education board such as the state government boards, Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) these boards have laid out specific guidelines to be followed for setting up of school facilities. One is to have a fully functional and well-equipped sports facility and playground. 

These education boards have laid down step by step process and they are transparent in nature. Affiliation is usually granted by following the checklist which has been laid by the educational authorities. These following details must be sorted before going into operations for affiliation these includes – 

Documents of sale and purchase of land – Documents of land such as title certificate or change of land use and which have been received from the district collector have to be attached for the affiliation formality.

Detail plan for construction of the building – The master plan for the building which has been approved by the municipal authority and clearance certificate which have been provided after the verification of the site, has to be attached for the affiliation formality.

Affidavit of a non-proprietary charter of secretary – An affidavit has to be provided for stating that the entity of the school is distinct from its members as it is a non- proprietary charter of secretary.

Fire safety certificate– Fire and safety certificate is provided by the fire department after the inspection is to be provided for the affiliation formality.

Health and sanitation safety certificate – Health and sanitation safety certificates are provided by the local authority ie. MCGM/BMCafter checking the safety and hygiene level of the school, quality of food in the canteen and cleanliness of the sanitation is taken into consideration before providing health and sanitation safety certificate.

Building safety certificate – It is mandatory for all schools to have a building fitness certificate. This certificate is provided by the MCGM/BMC. This fitness certificate is provided after checking the construction quality of the building, space, and ventilation of each classroom and proper fire safety equipment, etc. are taken into consideration before providing building safety certificates.

Police Verification Report of all school staff & Safety audit report from Local Police Department – This report is obtained from the local police station, verification of the school staff is done by the police department and safety report is provided by the police department after inspecting the safety of the nearby vicinity.

These are some of the documents which have to be ready before applying for the affiliation in any education board for fast and smooth approval for affiliation.

  • EPS & ESIC permission and registration

Registration for EPS and ESIC is compulsory for all the companies/organization who employs more than 20 individuals, every company/organization who employs more than 20 individuals are expected to register themselves within one month of attaining the minimum strength of 20. 

For opening an EPS & ESIC account the following documents are required- Name of the company,Date of the setup of the organization, Scanned copy of the company’s PAN, Scanned copy of the licenses available in the name of the company, Scanned copy of cheque of company’s bank account, Address of the company with address proof, List of Directors / Partners, Address proof of Proprietor / Director / Partner of the company, Email address, Mobile Number of Proprietor / Director / Partner of the company, Copy of First sale bill / Job work bill and First purchase bill, The monthly strength of employees from the date of setup, Current list of employees with their details: Name, Father’s Name, Date of joining, Date of birth, Mobile number, Postal address, Name of nominee, Grade, Salary, Designation, ID proof (Aadhaar and PAN), Bank A/c number with IFSC code, Digital Signature of the Proprietor / Director / Partner.  

These are the list of the five permissions and licenses required to start a school in Mumbai, all these five permission and licenses will be more or less the same in all the states in India.

Conclusion

Opening a school requires a good amount of time and investment. One needs to appoint a well-experienced lawyer to take care of all approvals required to complete the procedure of permissions and licenses in time. At least 3-4 years will be needed to complete the overall work of construction and getting all the approvals and affiliation from the day of foundation ceremony. Running a school is a challenging task it requires an investment of time, resources, capital, and human labor. 

But it has its own advantage where after the construction of a school building, it will be serving the society by imparting education, employing people, and staring a beginning of a journey where new minds are nourished and where transformation from a shy student to a confident public speaker is promoted, empowering children to be independent decision-makers which instills the quality of an independent thinkers. 

The capital investment being huge also reflects the return on investment in time future. After a few years, one can expect profit out of it. Based on one’s skills of running a school one can expect decent returns.


Students of Lawsikho courses regularly produce writing assignments and work on practical exercises as a part of their coursework and develop themselves in real-life practical skill.

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