Friday, July 28, 2006

Right to Education

The Eighty Sixth Amendment to the constitution inserted in 2002 made the Right to Education a fundamental right. It states specifically that- "The State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of six to fourteen years in such manner as the state may, by law, determine."

However, now the government has decided to drop the Right to Education Bill altogether. This bill when enacted would have made it mandatory for the government to invest money in primary and secondary education. The government now makes the outrageous claim that the cost, estimated at Rs 36000 crores, is too high an expenditure.

I believe that is one of the best investment the government can ever make. There is no way illiteracy can be abolished if the government doesn't spend on primary and secondary education. The director of the National Council for Education Research and Training (NCERT) Krishna Kumar expresses his views on this issue here.

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