Tuesday, June 1, 2021

A historic bill

Tuesday, the 4th August, 2009, will be remembered as a historic day as , much awaited bill on education as fundamental right passed in Lok Sabha. The widely talked & discussed bill was moved in Lok Sabha on Friday the 31st. The bill received anticipated support of majority of parties including BJP - the main opposition party in Lok Sabha. Some of the members of opposition asked the ministry to specify financial resources & spending plan for the purpose.

A historic bill having provision of free & compulsory education as a fundamental right of every child in the age group of 6-14 and demarking 25 percent seats to  children from economically weaker sections in private schools was moved in Lok Sabha last Friday & passed on Tuesday with much promise & funfare. The bill which has already been passed in Rajya Sabha in July 20, 2008 was placed by HRD minister Kapil Sibal with a strong advocacy.

The goodwill bill put the onus on the government of ensuring that children receive free and quality education without much hustle. It also makes the provision of doing away the capitation fee, usually private schools demand at the time of admission. The bill broadly aims to achieve- free & compulsory education, obligation on the part of state to provide education, befitting curriculum, quality education, responsibility, obligation & accountability of teachers, debardening the admission process & improve the infrastructure of schools, especially in rural areas.

Now it is fine that the bill is passed. But unlike any other bill’s fate, let us hope that this bill is introduced in letter & spirit. It is now a combined  responsibility of the government, schools & parents to work in tandem to make it successful. The general administration has also to be more careful in issuing the income certificate so that only children from financially weaker section be benefitted. The dilution of the process will heavily detrack the motive of the landmark bill. Hence a workable monitoring mechanism evolved soon to implement the bill in true spirit.