It takes more than just passing of a legislation to get things going in India. In this case, the central government is finding it difficult to raise the required money for implementing its landmark legislation — the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act 2009.
Union Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal on Monday said the government would need Rs 200,000 crore over the next five years to implement the Right To Education Act.
“Despite all calculations, the central government is falling short of Rs 60,000 crore (Rs 600 billion),” Sibal said, while addressing the 56th meeting of the Central Advisory Board on Education (CABE).
“After taking into account the money allocated under the 11th Five Year Plan and assuming that the same amount would be allocated during the 12th Five Year Plan, we still need to raise Rs 60,000 crore,” Sibal said, urging states to pitch in.
He added that the Centre’s contribution would depend on how soon India moves out of the economic downturn.
The CABE — attended by state education ministers, academicians and NGOs—also endorsed a common school curriculum for science and math across all school boards. Most state representatives focused on the need for teacher training to ensure that quality education was imparted to students.
Sibal pushed for consensus on the legislative and administrative reforms promised by his Ministry in the 100-day agenda.
He also announced a central madarsa (seminaries) board to look at the functioning of madarsas, which cater overwhelmingly to poor Muslim children, would be set up.
With executive powers, it would comprise clerics as well as educationists, especially women, who would stipulate the non-theological course’s content, infrastructure as well as examination system.