On 16 January 2023, the Allahabad High Court ordered private schools to adjust or refund 15% of the fees paid by families during the COVID-19 pandemic (2020-2021).
The court heard a petition filed by parents of pupils who had attended school online during the pandemic. The petitioners argued that since no services save for online teaching were provided during the pandemic, schools could not charge the whole fee. They also relied on the Supreme Court decision in Indian School, Jodhpur v. State of Rajasthan (LL 2021 SC 240), wherein the judges stated that collecting fees while offering no services amounts to profiteering. The High Court upheld the petitioners’ arguments and determined that 15% of the fees constituted excess payments. It therefore ordered schools either to refund such amount (e.g., to students who have already left the school) or to adjust the fees for the next academic session.