Monday, August 09, 2010

MHRD to get Rs. 2310 billion for Right to Education

India's Union Finance Minister Mr. Pranab Mukherjee said that the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) ministry would be allocated Rs. 2310 billion over the next three years to set up infrastructure for implementing the Right to Education (RTE) Act. The HRD minister has said Rs. 2310 billion crore will be required for implementing the RTE Act in the next three years for setting up schools, appointment of teachers and building infrastructure. "I have said the money will be provided", said Mr Mukherjee at a seminar on Economic Vision of the Indian National Congress held on Sunday.

Mr. Mukherjee's comments come in the backdrop of a recent government decision to embark on a nationwide consultation process with stakeholders to overcome teething trouble in implementing the RTE Act. The first meeting will be held on August 14, in which all issues pertaining to implementation of the law will be discussed, HRD minister Kapil Sibal had told reporters earlier. There are many issues in implementation of the RTE law. "We are meeting the principals and all the stakeholders on August 14 to identify the problems and discuss solutions", he said.

Mr. Mukherjee also added that the Centre would provide legal teeth to the Right to Health and Right to Food through a legal enactment. He said providing such rights and budgetary support to implement those programmes were made possible because of the economic growth that India had achieved over the past few years. It was not possible in the 1980s. But now, I am confident of providing budgetary support for bringing about an all-inclusive growth, he said. The government is also determined to give 25 kilos of rice or wheat to the BPL (below poverty line) families at a pre-determined price of Rs. 3 per kilo irrespective of the market rates, he added.

The finance minister announced a spate of initiatives in Dhaka to enhance economic ties between India and Bangladesh. During the FMs Bangladesh visit, India on Saturday inked a $1-billion loan agreement with Bangladesh, which is the biggest it has offered to a foreign country. The billion dollar loan is being offered at 1.75% interest and will be repayable over a 20-year span.

Source: The Economic Times, August 9, 2010

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