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DMK tells Centre to junk draft education policy

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Press Trust of India New Delhi
A delegation of DMK MPs led by Kanimozhi called on Human Resource Development Minsiter Ramesh Pokhriyal here on Monday and urged withdrawal of the Draft National Education Policy, 2019.
The delegation handed over a letter by party chief M K Stalin to Pokhriyal and a report of an expert panel set up by the party, both of which demanded withdrawing the new proposals.
"In the interest of quality and equitable education to all in rural and urban areas and national development, I request the Central government to withdraw the DNEP 2019 in toto," Stalin said in his letter.
Many suggestions of the DNEP were against the spirit of the Constitution, principles of federalism and social justice, he alleged.
The proposals would affect the educational rights of children and state governments and educational democracy, he claimed.
Several recommendations, including the three language formula, closure of rural schools and entrance test for admissions in higher education institutions would adversely affect the educational rights of rural students and the progress of education, the top DMK leader asserted.
The DMK report said the DNEP "has hidden agendas" to deprive oppressed communities from education.
Opposing the three language formula and optional languages like French, the report said it would be very difficult for pre-primary and primary students to learn more languages.
Also, admitting a child in school for formal education at the age of three went against the childrens rights.
The new proposals were in favour of "complete centralisation, privatisation, corporatisation, commercialisation and saffronisation of education. It aims to transfer the education to the Central List from the Concurrent List," the report alleged.
Reservation based on social and educational backwardness was not mentioned anywhere in the DNEP. In higher education and research, scholarships for socially and educationally backward was also totally absent.
The draft talks about closure of rural schools, colleges, UGC and Universities and other education institutions.
The alternative mechanism suggested by DNEP was more dangerous and disastrous, he said.
Instead of talking of national and people's development, it spoke of caste based education and "Hindi and Sanskrit imposition," which would hinder educational development.
Vocational courses were given "very big importance," which was RSS and BJP's indirect attempt to drive away the rural students from mainstream education to their caste based hereditary occupation, the party alleged.
The DMK also opposed exist test (NEXT- National Exit Test) as it went against social justice and states' rights and the federal system of India.
The policy failed to recognise the federal structure of the Constitution and reduces states to the position of implementing agencies of the decisions made by the central regulatory authorities, the party said.
Based on the such factors, DMK said it "strongly opposes and rejects this anti-people, anti-Constitutional and anti student, Draft National Education Policy-2019.

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First Published: Jul 29 2019 | 8:38 PM IST

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