The demand is part of a 20-point charter submitted by ABVP to Union Minister for Human Resource Development (MHRD) Smriti Irani as suggestions for the New Education Policy (NEP) in the making.
The NEP was framed in 1986 and modified in 1992. The Narendra Modi government is now working on a new NEP to “meet the changing dynamics of the population’s requirement with regards to quality education, innovation and research”.
For the first time, the government has embarked on a grassroots consultative process to enable the MHRD to reach out to people across the country through over 2.75 lakh direct consultations while also taking inputs from citizens online.
“We have demanded a number of things from the minister such as revamping the state universities so that credible education can be provided at the undergraduate level and thus outmigration of students to such centres as Delhi, Hyderabad and Kolkata can be stopped. The ABVP suggested that a State University Rejuvenation Fund be created in this respect,” said joint secretary of Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union (JNUSU) Saurabh Sharma who was part of the delegation.
The minister gave the delegation a patient hearing and agreed to forward these suggestions to the committee looking into the framing of the education policy, Sharma said.
Other major suggestions made by the students’ body included new support systems such as vocational internship, grievance redressal cells, career guidance cells and measures to help under-priviledged students through schemes like ‘earn-while-you-earn’ programmes. Representatives of the body demanded that scholarships be made target-based so as they are distributed according to merit as well as need.
Another significant suggestion ABVP made while appreciating the NAAC ranking of institutions, was to make it mandatory and then to link it with the ‘Know Your College’ programme so as to help students to choose a suitable college