Delhi Education Minister Manish Sisodia praised the "forward-looking and progressive" New Educational Policy, 2020, unveiled by the Modi government on Wednesday, but raised questions on the course of implementation of the proposals that seek to revamp the Indian education system.
Addressing the media on Thursday, Sisodia, who is also the deputy CM, said the NEP was unable to break free of pressures of education's old traditions and didn't reveal specific means to achieve the goals.
"Nation was waiting for a new Education Policy for 34 years and it's now out. It's a forward-looking and progressive document that accepts the flaws in today's education system. But there are two issues — it was unable to break free of pressures of education's old traditions and secondly, the Policy doesn't say how will the reforms it speaks of will be achieved. The Policy is either silent or confused on those issues," Manish Sisodia said.
The leader praised the Centre's decision to change the name of the Ministry of Human Resource Development to the Ministry of Education. "This is a good move. I have been saying this for years that the job of HRD is part of education and is just the tool. Although we wish that they just don't change the name but also the department's working," he said.
Furthermore, Manish Sisodia demanded that a law be brought in Parliament mandating an education budget at the central and state level to an equivalent of 6% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), in line with the proposal in NEP.
"If we can have a law that fixes how much fiscal deficit in allowed in the budget, then why not bring a law to fix how much minimum should be spent on education at central and state level. Unless we pass a law to spend 6% of GDP on education, this policy will mean nothing," Sisodia said.
The Modi Cabinet on Wednesday approved the much-awaited NEP, 2020, which aims to revamp all aspects of India's education system and bring it closer to the best global standards. A committee led by former Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chief Dr. K Kasturirangan formed the Draft National Education Policy 2019 on the foundational pillars of 'Access, Equity, Quality, Affordability, and Accountability.' The new NEP replaces the one formulated in 1986.