CHENNAI: While the National Education Policy (NEP) is still in its draft stage and the last date for public feedback is July 31, the Centre has already made allocations in the budget for many schemes which are still being debated by State governments, said members of All India Students Federation (AISF) and educationalists on Sunday.
They were speaking at a conference organised by AISF to discuss the draft.“If the government has started allocating funds for proposals in the draft even before the policy is passed, then seeking public feedback is a mere eyewash,” said Prince Gajendrababu, general secretary of State Platform for Common School System (SPCSS -TN).
He charged the Centre with taking States’ consent for granted.
“For instance, the Centre has allocated budget for teaching Hindi in non-Hindi speaking States. This fund has been allocated even after they corrected the draft saying Hindi will not be imposed on non-Hindi speaking States.”
The NEP, among other things, initially said all States will follow a three-language formula in which students will compulsorily learn Hindi and English. However, after public outrage, especially from Tamil Nadu, the draft was revised and it was stated that Hindi will not be imposed on any State.
“The National Research Fund was also first mentioned only in the draft. But funds have been allocated for it. Similarly, ideas such as the Higher Education Commission of India, headed by the Prime Minister, was also discussed in the budget speech when the policies have not been officially adopted.”
The Centre should not undermine States feedback and should not take decisions without consultation, he said.