Promised by Captain on budget eve, free girl education finds no mention in Punjab budget
Amarinder, while speaking on the conclusion of the governor’s address in the Vidhan Sabha on Monday evening, made several announcements that the legislators were expecting to hear on the budget day.punjab Updated: Jun 21, 2017 12:36 IST
Even as chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh on the budget eve announced free education for girls from nursery to the doctorate level in government institutes of Punjab, the populist measure found no mention in finance minister Manpreet Singh Badal’s speech on Tuesday.
Amarinder, while speaking on the conclusion of the governor’s address in the Vidhan Sabha on Monday evening, made several announcements that the legislators were expecting to hear on the budget day. Leaving aside the figures, which Amarinder said Manpreet would be divulging later, the speech gave a fair idea about the government’s plan for the year.
However, even as the budget presented on Tuesday revealed allocations to various other announcements made by Amarinder, including free textbooks to school students, it made no mention to free education for girls.
Rs 36 crore to ensure furniture, green boards and computers in every primary school, Rs 15 crore for setting up new colleges in backward areas, Rs 10 crore to revive old colleges in the state — the budget mainly emphasised on creating and upgrading basic infrastructure in government educational institutes.
Watch: Key points from Punjab budget :
The government has decided to set up five new degree colleges in educationally backward areas with a provision of spending Rs 15 crore in the budget.
The budget also allocates Rs 10 crore to the oldest government colleges in Punjab, including those in Kapurthala, Malerkotla, Hoshiapuar, Amritsar and Patiala. The aim is to create infrastructure in these institutes and revive their old glory.
Finance minister Manpreet Singh Badal also announced provision of free internet in all 48 government colleges.
The government has also increased the grant to Panjab University, Chandigarh, from the existing Rs 26 crore to Rs 33 crore for 2017-18.
- Rs 30 crore: Free books to students in Classes 9-12
- Rs 26 crore: Furniture, green boards in every primary school
- Rs 15 crore: Five new degree colleges
- Rs 10 crore: Computer in every primary school
- Rs 5 crore: E-library at Patiala
- Rs 3 crore: Urdu academy at Malerkotla
Apart from hinting at the announcement of a new education policy soon, the government has allocated Rs 21 crore to ensure every government primary school in the state has furniture.
Rs 10 crore have been earmarked to provide at least one computer in primary schools, while Rs 5.25 crore will be spent on installing green boards.
The government also announced a new scheme to encourage competition among schools. Manpreet Badal said school adjudged best in middle, higher and secondary categories will get special financial assistance. An outlay of Rs 9.27 crore has been made for this.
Manpreet announced an outlay of Rs 1 crore for setting up a skill development university in the state. Even as he did not reveal its intended location, technical education minister Charanjit Singh Channi said it would come up at Chamkaur Sabhi, the assembly segment represented by him.
A regional vocational training institute for girls and a regional directorate of apprenticeship will also be established at Saneta village in SAS Nagar.
The Captain government will set up a Central Institute of Promotion and Development of Punjabi Language at Talwandi Sabo. The institute will undertake activities like digitisation and standardisation of the language besides research and translation of significant Punjabi works.
An Urdu academy will also come up at Malerkotla. Rs 3 crore have been allocated for it.
The government has also proposed an e-library at the Central State Library in Patiala. With Rs 5 crore earmarked for it, it will be connected with all major libraries across the globe.
Access to this library will be for free.