New Delhi,Rohinee Singh: Even before the human resource development (HRD) ministry draws final contours of the new national education policy, National University of Educational Planning and Administration (NUEPA) is unhappy with the planning of the ministry. NUEPA, the think tank of the ministry, had played the most prominent role in drafting the 1986 education policy.
The ministry had consulted the university about four months ago, with its framework of consultation. The HRD ministry plans to hold nation-wide consultations on the education policy. NUEPA had been asked by the ministry to prepare open-ended questions, on which the ministry could take feedback from stakeholders. The university has prepared a questionnaire with about 40 questions.
The ministry plans to hold six-month-long consultations with the states involving participation at panchayat, block, district and state levels. Within the BJP and RSS, the six-month-long state consultation is a cadre-mobilising and cadre-building exercise.
NUEPA feels that while it may be a good exercise to ensure public participation in policy making, but it is not a feasible decision. "It is like going to the people without doing your homework. We were asked to prepare open-ended questions which can be taken up to the village panchayats. We are not opposing the idea of consulting the villagers, but one has to go to the village with a plan and seek suggestions and inputs. Instead, the ministry is planning to do a reverse exercise," said a senior faculty at NUEPA.
NUEPA has also questioned how these district and panchayat meetings are going to be conducted and if there is adequate manpower available to carry out such mass-level consultations.