The government will set up five more Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) and Indian Institutes of Management (IIM) and has allocated Rs 500 crore for it in the Union Budget.
While Jammu & Kashmir, Chattisgrah, Goa, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala will get the new IITs, the IIMs will come up in Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Bihar, Odisha and Maharashtra.
The country presently has 16 IITs and 13 IIM.
"The country needs a large number of centres of higher learning which are world class," finance minister Arun Jaitley said while presenting his maiden budget in Parliament. He also announced the setting up of Jai Prakash Narayan National Centre for Excellence in humanities in Madhya Pradesh.
Overall, the budget of the HRD ministry (plan and non-plan) — of both the departments of higher education and department of school education and literacy taken together — will witness a rise of 12.3% from Rs 74,621 crore in 2013-14 to Rs 83,771 crore.
Announcing the "Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya New Teachers Training Programme" to infuse new training tools and motivate teachers with an initial corpus of Rs 500 crore, Jaitley made a provision of Rs 28,635 crore for Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan while the Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan has got Rs 4,966 crore.
"The government will also strive to provide toilets and drinking water in all girls’ school in first phase," he added.
To take advantage of the reach of IT, Jaitley has allocated a sum of Rs 100 crore for setting up virtual classrooms as Communication Linked Interface for Cultivating Knowledge (CLICK) and online courses.
Lauding the initiatives for education in the Budget, HRD minister Smriti Irani said: "The budget has specially focused on the education of the girl child which is one of the major priorities of this government. The budgetary announcements reflected the development strategy of the government and its mandate of Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas."
The education industry too seemed happy with the Budget. "It is heartening to see the priority accorded to the education sector, especially the focus on primary education. The government has also committed to promote research and higher education in a big way through budgetary allocation and setting up of more IITs and IIMs. This will provide a much-needed impetus to the twin areas that have remained largely stagnant over the past couple of years", d Ranjan Kaul, Managing Director, Oxford University Press India.