Bengaluru: A higher budgetary allocation of Rs 8,838 for the education sector is among the major highlights of the interim budget presented by Finance Minister Piyush Goel in the parliament on Friday. The allocation has seen an increase of over Rs 8000 crore, going from Rs 85,010 crore in 2018-19 to Rs 93, 848 for 2019-20. 25% additional seats have been announced for the financially backward across varsities, apart from the existing quotas for SC/ST/OBC.
The hike in the allocation towards Centrally Sponsored Schemes worth Rs 3,27,679 has won hearts among stakeholders of the education sector with many lauding the initiative that is expected to empower schemes such as National Education Mission, Sakshar Bharat, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan. “This increased allocation of fund will ensure better quality government schools that educate majority of children in India. Greater spend on National Education Program will make provisions for skilled teachers in the system with better pay. Also, it will provide incentives to encourage research across all disciplines. The government’s major focus on debt consolidation will make education system more efficient and transparent,” said Shweta Sastri, MD, Canadian International School Bangalore (CISB).
Suryaprakash Jayaramu, Associate Vice President, BASE Educational Services told Deccan Chronicle that the budget comes as a great support for aspiring medical students and researchers in the country. “Setting up new AIIMS (All India Institutes of Medical Science) campuses across the country will provide a relief to the dearth of medical seats in the country that was compelling the creamy layer of medical aspirants from India to try for courses abroad. India’s medical research will attain greater heights and expand career opportunities for the medical researchers,” he said.
However, child rights activists said the budget failed to include children and their needs. “For almost 40% of India’s population comprising of its children, the budget failed to address the expectations of the nation, as children were neither a part of the Budget Speech, nor were they visible anywhere in the 10 point vision for 2030,” opined Puja Marwaha, CEO at CRY (Child Rights and You). “The allocation towards Areas such as educational scholarships for marginalized sections, both below and above the tenth standard have declined.” She lauded the fact that Rs 575 crores has been added more than that of the previous budget towards protection of children in Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS). “However, the area of protection, especially prevention of crimes against children, is huge and it requires much more resource allocation. “...