Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the budget for 2019-2020 and said in her speech that the allocation for education for 19-20 will be more than three times the revised estimates. The entire budget was mixed responses from various experts and sectors.
The total allocation in 2019-20 with ₹94,853.64 crore with an increase of ₹10,000 crore. Out of which, the school sector got ₹56, 536.63 crores and rest ₹38,317.01 crore has been allocated to the higher education.
For the same Fr. P. Christie, S.J., Director, XLRI- Xavier School of Management said, “There is need for Better Governance framework within the education sector and the government’s announcements like bringing reforms in the Higher Education Regulatory Arms to promote greater autonomy and focus on better academic outcomes and the allotment of Rs.400-crore for “World Class Institutions” are steps in the right direction to build a robust education system; and we look forward to the legislation to set up the Higher Education Commission of India (HECI). However, this right intent of the government can truly be attained if we also have a long-term strategy and organizational structure in place.”
In the higher education sector, subsidy for interest and education fund has been deducted from ₹2,150 crore in 2018-19 to ₹1,900 crore in 2019-20. Also, the National Research Foundation (NRF) will be established to fund and coordinate and boost research in the country. Nirmala Sitharaman said, “NRF will ensure that the overall research eco-system in the country is strengthened with focus on identified thrust areas relevant to our national priorities and towards basic science without duplication of effort and expenditure. We would work out a very progressive and research-oriented structure for NRF. The funds available with all Ministries will be integrated with NRF. This would be adequately supplemented with additional funds.”
Also, the budget for apex bodies like All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) and University Grants Commission (UGC) has been reduced. But an increase of allocation to central universities by nearly ₹400 crore to ₹6,843 crore. Another ₹6,410 crore for IIT as compare to ₹6,326 crore-budget allocation in the last fiscal year. Also, a significant drop of IIM budget with ₹445.5 crore for all the IIMs as compare to ₹1,036 crore allocated in 2018-19.