New education policy to be announced before May 26: Irani

World Monday 16/May/2016 23:20 PM
By: Times News Service
New education policy to be announced before May 26: Irani

New Delhi: The much-awaited new education policy will be announced before May 26 when the Narendra Modi government completes its two years in office, Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Smriti Irani said.
"The National Education Policy will be before the nation by May 26," she said in response to a question at the IndiaTV conclave on the completion of two years of National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government. "Under the new education policy, National Council Of Educational Research And Training (NCERT) will address all those challenges facing the education system," she said, adding, it needs to address many issues as even students say they know more about Renaissance than about Maharana Pratap.
On the No-Detention Policy introduced by United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government in schools, she said a review is being carried out and "a decision will be taken soon". "No-Detention Policy has led to students being unable to cope in class 9. The state governments want it scrapped," she said.
She said the government was taking a number of initiatives towards providing education to all and an endeavour 'Swayam' was being undertaken with the help of (Indian Institutes of Technology) IITs, Indian Institutes of Management(IIMs), central universities, NITs and some private universities to provide free online education to children for classes 9 to 12, including Board examinations.
"It will provide quality education online through a portal and mobile app in ten Indian languages for classes 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th, including Board exams. It will start in the next two months and Indian students enrolled through it can get free education online and only money will be paid for giving exams," she said.
"This is a very big step in school education for the poor," she said. She also talked about MoUs being signed with Massachusetts Institute of Technology(MIT) in the USA and Stanford University for improving syllabi in NITs, besides creating a separate cadre for teacher trainers. Irani said the government has roped in H. C. Verma, a professor from from IIT Kanpur, to undertake training exercises at government schools in Uttar Pradesh to promote interest in science. Irani said though allegations of saffronisation of education keep coming, the National Curriculum Framework, which was devised in 2005, has not been changed. "24 schools in Jammu and Kashmir had teachers but no students. We are monitoring schools in every state. We are also monitoring diet through a portal," she said.
The minister underlined the need to spread technical education, saying under government's 'Unnat Bharat Abhiyaan', IITs, IIMs and central universities have adopted five villages in 90 districts across the country to boost education and technical know-how. She also appealed to private institutes to emulate the government's initiative.
Irani said the controversy over Prime Minister's degrees was "extremely unfortunate" and it was the duty of every university to protect the privacy of students as they are independent under an Act of Parliament. "It is the duty of every university to protect the privacy of every student," she said in response to the row over Prime Minister's educational qualification.
To a query on the growing unrest in various campuses in the country, she said there was a lathicharge on students in Jawaharlal Nehru University(JNU) campus in 2009 but no such voices were raised.
"Did police lathicharge in JNU campus in 2009 make headlines? Did Rashid Alvi raise slogans then?" she asked. She said her ministry had never meddled in JNU's affairs. "There are words like 'innuendo and planted news' that have impacted my achievements," she said.
"I think people understand that I cannot drag somebody to the court as law and order is not under the jurisdiction of HRD Ministry. People need to understand that I (MHRD) do not wield police powers," she added.
Irani also brushed aside charges of saffronisation of education, saying, "Art, culture have nothing to do with 'saffron'. Accusing of saffronisation without evidence is not correct." She also hit out at Rahul Gandhi, saying the Congress Vice-President does not have time to visit Kerala, where the party is in power, and where a Dalit girl was raped and murdered. She also said protests on Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula's death were funded and lamented that even the death of a student was politicised. "Death should not be politicised. Rahul Gandhi's questions have been answered in Parliament," she said on the issues raised by him on Vemula's death, adding that her statement in Parliament was true and that is why no privilege motion was moved against her.