The National Policy on Education was framed in 1986 and modified in 1992. Since then, several changes have taken place that calls for a revision of the policy. The National Education thus made, laid emphasis on removal of disparities and equalization of educational opportunities especially in respect of disadvantaged sections. Considerable progress was made in this regard in last three decades but the glass ceiling remains to exist for the backward class.
Former Cabinet Secretary TSR Subramanian – who headed the panel for the evolution of New Education Policy wrote to HRD Minister Smriti Irani insisting her to make public his panel’s report containing suggestions for the new national education policy – or else he will, The Indian Express reported. With the report not public yet, Subramanian has sent a three-page letter informing Irani that he, after some ‘soul searching’, has decided to go public with its contents. The former bureaucrat, however, did not mention when he intends to do this.
Is it a threat to Union Minister of Human resource and Development?
It is not a threat; the media and people across have taken it in a different manner. It is simply an advice to the ministry that the report should be in public domain. It has no secrets involved. It is just a suggestion. The fact is that Subramanian told them that this should be in the public domain….but, he never said ‘or else’ kind of thing. He meant to say that “hope you’ll do it; otherwise I’ll have to do it”.
The five-member committee entrusted with the responsibility of assimilating feedback collected by the HRD Ministry through grassroots and national-level consultations on 33 themes and making suggestions for drafting a new education policy for the country, submitted its suggestions to the HRD Ministry on May 27. Apart from Subramanian, former Chief Secretary of Delhi government Shailaja Chandra, former Home Secretary, Delhi government Sevaram Sharma, former Chief Secretary, Gujarat Sudhir Mankad and former Director, NCERT J S Rajput, were members of the panel.
Work process of the committee
As per the reports, the five-member committee started working on the draft from November 1. Prior to this, the ministry undertook the assessment exercise, listing 33 issues in the education sector, asking various institutions to organize seminars etc. So this was the preparation by the ministry. All the documents and around 5000-6000 responses were received; most were grievances. However, there was also a large number of positive, detailed suggestions from various quarters which were used as the base.
The committee was given two months time to go through them but in the end they felt that they require more time because before forming the policy and before assessing the documents thoroughly so as to know on what basis the same was premised upon. Thereafter the conclusions were derived from. This is the reason an extension till March was granted. The committee met 400-500 people – professors, academics, vice chancellors, NGOs, industry associations, education associations, charity organizations, press secretaries and more during the entire exercise to get their view points.
The battle has just begun, for more updates on Education Policy – stay tuned!!