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National Education Policy as a 'backward looking document'

National Education Policy as a backward looking document
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National Education Policy as a 'backward looking document'

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‘Education should not be on ancient cultural values’

New Delhi: Terming the new National Education Policy as a "backward looking document", senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said on Wednesday that education should be based on principles of the Constitution and not be on ancient cultural values.

Raising the issue as a Zero Hour mention in Rajya Sabha, Kharge, who was recently elected to the upper house, said the entire NEP is a "backward looking document" that is looking 2000 years back instead of planning and preparing our children for the future.

"Therefore the values of moral education in schools and higher education should be based on the principles of the Constitution and not on ancient cultural values," he added.

The NEP-2020 is the first education policy of the 21st century, which was announced 34 years after the previous National Policy on Education in 1986. The NEP-2020 is directed towards major reforms at both the school and higher education level, the government has said Kharge noted that a provision in the Constitution states that in state and state-aided institutions there should be no religious instructions.

According to Article 28 (1), no religious instructions shall be provided in any educational institutions wholly maintained out of the state fund, he said. In cities, Kharge said, children who have access to quality nursery education learn to read and write by the time they join class 1.

However, he said poor children in towns and villages will be at a disadvantage because there is no proper policy defined for training of Aanganwadi teachers. Poor children will start with a disadvantage of not having learnt for three years before joining class 1.

"Nearly 50 per cent of students drop out after Class 10. There is no plan that has been suggested to reduce this drop outs. It is estimated that 32.4 per cent of these student drop outs are Dalits, 25.7 per cent minorities and 16.4 per cent are tribals," Kharge said.

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