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KARNATAKA ON IMPLEMENTATION OF NEP

15 September 2021: Karnataka Chief Minister Mr. Basavaraj Bommai said that the state is ready to discuss the implementation of the NEP 2020 and mentioned that a committee has been formed to decide on the primary and secondary schools in the state. While offering tribute to M Visvesvaraya on Engineering Day, the CM said, “We are ready to have a discussion on new National Education Policy. There are the revolutionary changes.” Along with this statement he also added that “the committee has been formed as we haven’t decided on its implementation for primary and secondary schools.”

Earlier this month the Education Minster of Karnataka, Mr. C N Ashwatha Narayana had commended the policy and had said that it takes freedom of the student to subject level. Also earlier, Congress member BK Hariprasad, criticizing the implementation of the National Education Policy in Karnataka, said the government was imposing ‘RSS policies’ through it. Meanwhile, Marithibbe Gowda of the JD(S) claimed that the NEP would force children of backward communities to drop out. Mr. Gowda also said that the government is hurrying the implementation and raised questions over the fate of over 14,000 guest lecturers in the state, as the new education policy mandates having permanent lecturers. On the other hand, according to the colleges themselves, sudden implementation of the NEP in Karnataka leaves colleges struggling.

"Any policy is only as good as its implementation. Such implementation will require multiple initiatives and actions with multiple nods by multiple bodies in a synchronized and systematic manner," stated in the documents of the NEP. Many were supporting the NEP and many were said that they are totally against it but there was also a part of people who supported the NEP but didn’t want to see the sudden implementation.

The leader of the opposition of the Karnataka legislative assembly Mr. Siddaramiah said the implementation was sudden, not given time for a proper discussion. The Congress was demanding that the speaker should have extended the session for the discussion of the important issues, including the NEP. Siddaramiah also said that he told the speaker of the Karnataka legislative assembly Mr. Vishweshwar Hegde Kageri that the session was not extended though he wrote to him demanding the same.

He said “I had requested time to speak on the NEP, but it was rejected for lack of time. It is unfortunate that the government did not give comprehensive answers to even the issues that were discussed.” Discussion is necessary for taking further actions for the filling the loopholes in the new NEP. Though some were discussed but some were skipped too like ‘the multiple entry and exit option’ that the NEP provided. As per this provision, students can choose to opt out their studies at any given point, and receive certifications accordingly.

It can maybe look like a positive step as it allows those who cannot complete the four years of education to still graduate with qualifications. But again, the consequences arising here, which was also mentioned by a professor in an interview was “students those who leaves college at the end of the second semester will ‘at least’ get a certificate. But the language itself is the problem, she said adding that students should not have to strive to be in the ‘at least’ category”. She even added that “it gives them a viable option to not return to college, which is not something we want for them. We want them to return to college.”

-Utkarsh Sinha

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