Will India Ever Make a Strong Financial Commitment to Education?

/, MISSING, Missing Installations/Will India Ever Make a Strong Financial Commitment to Education?

Will India Ever Make a Strong Financial Commitment to Education?

“Education is what makes people aware of the social evils in the world, including human trafficking” –

says Anuradha Koirala, a Padma Shri awardee and the founder of Maiti Nepal, a charitable Nepali organization that combats sex trafficking.

Humans are born to live, but unfortunately countless little souls are robbed of their basic Right to Education. Education is the most compelling tool to initiate social modifications and enhance community development, especially in rural areas, which covers more than 70% of India.

India has 47 million youth of secondary and higher secondary school-going age dropping out of school

– reveals a Montreal-based UNESCO Institute for Statistics and Global Education Monitoring report. Irrespective of its massive structural and economic metamorphosis, hundreds and thousands of children across the nation lies drenched in a bleak and dark future.

Education: The Powerful Tool to Combat Sex Trafficking

At least 35 million children aged 6 – 14 years do not attend school. And 53% of girls in the age group of 5 to 9 years are illiterate. They, instead of opening their eyes to a day of learning, begin their day with hard labor – in the factory, streets, fields and even brothels. Yes, the lack of education makes families and young girls more vulnerable to traffickers.

With no education and awareness, people find themselves in precarious situations and fall prey to vile sex traffickers. Families sell their daughters for low money or daughters go out for looking odd-jobs only to fall victims in the hands of crime kingpins. Whatever the reason may be, education and awareness definitely does play a key role in curbing sex trafficking and exploitation of girls and women.

Education enlightens people. It acts as a window of opportunity to end all hardships of life. It is like that gleaming flame that keeps people away from doing wrong, while making them aware of all the social evils present in our society today, and sex trafficking is on the top-priority list. Not only that, education and counseling are regarded as huge steps for proper rehabilitation of trafficked survivors – it helps them come out of the trauma and re-integrate with the society by keeping aside the haunting past.

Education in Budget 2018

For this and more, the Right to Education (RTE) Act was passed in 2009, which came into force after constitutional amendment in 1999 – it describes the modalities of the significance of free and compulsory education for children between the ages 6 and 14 years in India under 21A of the Indian constitution. Also, this year, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley stated Rs 85,010 crore has been allocated to the education sector for the year starting 1 April, 2018. The new budget allocation in the Union Budget for 2018-19 is said to be 4% higher than the revised 2017-18 budget estimate, which after pegging stood at an outlay of Rs79,685.95 crore.

The Loopholes in Education Structure

But though the recently-announced budget 2018 presents a glossy overall picture, Indian education system is riddled with a series of loopholes. Here are a few:

  • India stresses more on higher education than the primary or secondary education
  • Lack of basic infrastructure facilities, like safe drinking water, toilet facility, electricity and accommodating classrooms
  • Lower pay packages for teachers, hence their non-willingness to teach in rural corners of India
  • Inadequate supply of free or subsidized textbooks and other stationary equipments for needy students

Solution

Our education system is in a critical, shambling state. Our children need our attention, our resources. We, as a nation have to come forward to take a collective responsibility of upgrading the entire system right from the scratch. The authorities need to address the loopholes and devise proper solutions. For a start, the focus should be on increasing the number of government schools in rural India, and allocating a decent percentage of teachers there. Fortunately, a number of NGOs in India are aware of the current state of education and are eager to help. They want to do something for the underprivileged kids, the kids deserve a basic right to education and the NGOs can work on it by nurturing a social change all around.

The key players in this noble initiative are Teach for India, Make A Difference, Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation, Pratham and CRY. They are the ones who work day and night to make sure that ‘education is every child’s right’. Also, for a promising multi-pronged approach, private sector partnerships has to be included – they are strategically powerful and financially more independent, thus can be effective in making a strong financial commitment to education, when combined with the efforts of government, NGO and people at large.

Do you have any other solution in mind? Share your opinions with us!

To Get Involved

Subscribe