Friday, 25 Sep 2020

‘Focus on 10 institutions will be a game changer’

TOI file photo of HRD minister Smriti Irani.
Claiming there has been a substantial hike in budget allocation for higher and school education, HRD ministry on Friday said proposals to establish Higher Education Financing Agency (HEFA) and turning 10 public and private institutions into world class educational institutions could be a game changer.
Education secretary Vinay Sheel Oberoi said the broad framework of how 10 institutions each from public and private would be selected will be worked out in the next few months. “The idea is to create enabling environment for these institutions. These institutions should be multi-disciplinary.

Also it should not only have foreign qualified faculty but even foreign faculty,” he said, giving instance of how under Global Initiative of Academic Network (GIAN) more and more institutions are availing foreign teachers. HRD minister Smriti Irani said, “Framework for each institution will vary. We are not in favour of one-size-fits all policy.” Identification of these institutions will take some time, Oberoi said.

As for Uchchatar Avishkar Abhiyan, additional secretary R Subramanyam said, “It has been very successful as 160 proposals have come. They are worth Rs 623 crore of which industry will contribute Rs 156 crore. In the first year only IITs were involved. This will give a big push to government’s Make in India programme.”
In school education, Irani said opening of 62 new Navodaya Vidyalayas — 11 in Chhattisgarh —will give a big push to taking quality education to rural India Asked about the discontinuation of highly successful Mahila Samakhya programme, school education secretary Subhash Khuntia said, “Mahila Samakhya will be taken over by the National Rural Livelihod Mission of Rural Development ministry.” However, when told that rural development ministry has refused to make it a part, a senior official later said, “We will bring it back in HRD then.”