Comments of Experts & Professionals from the Education Ecosystem on Union Budget 2019

Union Budget 2019
Experts Comment on Union Budget 2019

Indian Education News Editorial Team has received some comments of Experts & Professionals from the Indian Education Ecosystem on Union Budget 2019 presented by the Minister of Finance, Government of India recently in the Parliament.

Education sector gets ₹ 94,854 crore. Out of the total ₹ 94,853.64 crore education budget, ₹ 56,536.63 crore has been marked for school sector and ₹ 38,317.01 crore for higher education.

Mr Siddharth Jain, Secretary General, FLARE – Federation of Leaders in Academics, Research & Education
“For any country to progress, maximum thrust should be given on youth and the right transformation of youth can happen through right education only.” The first union budget of Modi 2.0 Government has tried to address a lot of issues in the Education Ecosystem. The Government initiative of introducing the New National Education Policy 2019, setting up of Higher Education Commission of India (HECI), developing National Research Framework (NRF) and promotion of Study In India are some excellent steps for Indian Education. The budget should have given some emphasis on CSR Funding of corporates to be used for Education and its promotion. Overall a very welcoming budget and on behalf of the entire Education Fraternity, I would like to extend my greetings to the Finance Minister Ms Nirmala Sitharaman.

Fr. P. Christie S.J., Director, XLRI- Xavier School of Management
“A robust education system forms the bedrock of a strong and progressive nation. The Government’s initiative in bringing in the New National Education Policy in the near future is a welcome step. There is need for Better Governance framework within the education sector and the government’s announcements like bringing reforms in the Higher Education Regulatory Arms to promote greater autonomy and focus on better academic outcomes and the allotment of Rs.400-crore for “World Class Institutions” are steps in the right direction to build a robust education system; and we look forward to the legislation to set up the Higher Education Commission of India (HECI). However, this right intent of the government can truly be attained if we also have a long-term strategy and organisational structure in place. The government’s move to strengthen research and innovation and emphasis on start-ups are positive steps. We welcome the government’s plan to have a DD TV channel for start-ups. The government’s vision of developing the National Research Foundation (NRF) will set the implementation process in motion and help not only in the intellectual advancement of the youth but of the nation at large. The government’s decision to promote skill training and sports awareness would definitely help in the holistic development of the youth.”

Mr Ayush Bansal and Shubham Sharda, Co-founders of Foxmula
‘Study in India’ can prove to be one of the best initiatives, with Institutions implementing Industry-oriented skill development with exposures. As the technologies create new pressures on career scopes, upskilling, reskilling and continuous learning initiatives will be key to ensuring both that individuals have access to economic opportunity by remaining competitive in the new world of work, and that businesses have access to the talent they need for the jobs of the future. This is precisely what we do at Foxmula in an ecosystem, giving EdTech a magic touch and increasing employment by minimizing the skill-gap of the employees. Foxmula has already begun to dig deeper into the new Technologies and getting out the hidden talents from the Country. Not only we focus on developing the industrial skill set towards it but also create a Job ready profile with Global Certifications and Industrial Exposure via Internships. I must say, at Foxmula we are discovering some amazing talents for New Technologies, who never had an idea of it before. It’s great to see the Government realising and acting towards it at the right time, with growing investments in the domain. We look forward to working with the Government in the near future.”

Ms Shweta Sastri, Managing Director, Canadian International School, Bengaluru
The union budget of 2019-20 is definitely a progressive one to revive the economy and create positive business sentiments. It has ushered in policies that will help in the growth of the overall economy. It would act as a catalyst for higher demands and spur spending across bottom-of-pyramid consumers. The government proposed a range of major changes for India’s education system in the budget and laid emphasis on the importance of not only providing literacy but improving the quality of education. The decision to set up a National Research Foundation to fund and coordinate research in India is welcome. The plan of the Government to launch ‘Study in India’ programme is meant to make India an attractive education destination for international students. The allotment of 400-cr to develop world-class institutions is to be highly appreciated. The enhancement of budget allocation for education is an appreciating move. This increased allocation of the fund will ensure better quality government schools that educate the majority of children in India. With the aim of the government to make India’s schools future-ready with a deeper focus on research and new age skills such as robotics, AI, IoT etc, not only integration of technology in classrooms is expected to get a considerable boost, but also education will become more accessible for all. The decision to treat education holistically is also a welcome move and will lend greater synergy in the planning and execution of important schemes and programmes. This is a balanced budget as far as the education sector is concerned.  Overall, we feel that the measures taken should meet the expectations of the common man, which will lead to higher consumption, enhanced liquidity in the market, increase in investment and savings, imperative to fuel India’s growth engine.

Mr Tarun Bhalla, Founder & CEO, Avishkaar
I’m delighted to hear the Government will be working towards improving our youth skill levels in AI, Big Data, IoT along with Robotics. These skills of the future will ensure that our youth are prepared and able to secure jobs both in the country and abroad. It’s a commendable step helping align education with industry requirements.”

Mr Vivek Jain, Chief Business Officer –, Naukri FastForward
“The GIAN initiative is a positive step as the quality of teaching is the building blocks of our education system and requires improvement at various levels. I am sure if it’s implemented properly there will be many Indian institutions in the top 200 global institutions bracket. The study in India program will enable Indian Institutions to build a global reputation. Focusing on relatively newer areas like AI, Big Data, Robotics will also increase the pool of good talent in these high demand areas.”

Mr Rishi Rai, CEO, Brainers Business School
“The 1st budget of Modi 2.0 Government presented by Finance Minister Sitharaman has brought plenty of perks to offer to education and skill development. Catering to the education sector, to make India a hub of higher education the government proposes ‘Study in India’ to bring in foreign students to pursue education here. From no single Indian institute in top 200 universities ranking until 5 years ago, India now has 3 institutions in the top 200 global institutions bracket. The government has also proposed an allocation of Rs 400 crore for world-class higher education institutions in the country. To enhance the skills of the individual the government has also announced, 10 million youth to be trained under ‘Skill India Mission”

Mr Ankur Dhawan, COO, Buddy4Studdy
Budget does not have many new items for the education sector and we will have to wait for implementation of the New Education Policy to see major changes in the sector. Though the focus on “Study in India” is good, it does not solve the urgent problems of lower enrollment in higher education as well as poor learning outcomes. The budget could have emphasized on leveraging more of CSR funds in education to cover insufficient budgetary allocations”

Dr Sandeep Pachpande, Chairman, Audyogik Shikshan Mandal (ASM) Group.
“We whole-heartedly welcome the “Study in India’ initiative by the government to attract foreign students. It’s been long due and I am sure this will impact positively to the economy. We are yet to receive the detail of the initiative and the plan for the initiative, but we will definitely do our best to support it. The proposed allocation of 400 crores to higher education institutes will help cater many students across the country. However, the requirement is much more and we were expecting a larger percentage of the budget will be allocated for it. Though in the last 4 years the government has underspent the allocated budget for the sector, we are hoping the scenario will be different in FY20.”

Ms Niru Agarwal, Trustee, Greenwood High International School
The union budget has come up with policies that will enhance the welfare prospects of populations across the country. It is a growth-oriented budget that augurs well for the economy. The measures taken up by the government in its budget will help education in all respects. and will go a long way in reforming the educational sector. The series of measures announced by the Finance Minister touches upon key changes in the sector ranging from setting up of new institutions to improving the research culture in the country. While literacy has always been a focus, this time around there are proposals to improve the quality of education. The government has announced Rs 400 crore allocations to set up world-class institutions that will rival the best across the country and the world. The higher funding would enhance the quality of education in government schools and will help children in their learning endeavour. But a more fundamental announcement has been the national education policy that tries to align India’s institutions with global institutions. The proposal to set up a National Research Foundation will encourage and improve the standards of research in the country. The government also plans to invite foreign students to study in India and this will be realised through the new scheme ‘Study in India’, which is highly appreciative. Schools in the country will be made future-ready with a focus on research, robotics and AI. This technology upgradation will allow Indian schools to leverage the power of digital solutions and prepare students for new age jobs and career. Ultimately, the budget has important and progressive measures and is a student -focussed. Education is linked to the economy and good skills will lead to a highly productive system. The status of education is often a healthy predictor of the country’s overall development and well-being.

Mr Ashish Bhatia, Founder, India Accelerator
In the Budget 2019-20, Hon’ble Finance Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman has duly tried to address some of the concerns of the Startup Ecosystem. Easing of Angle tax issue is a step in the right direction. Providing a platform like Shark Tank via a Doordarshan umbrella will also help many of the startups, particularly in the early stages to raise funds and let the whole nation know about them.

Mr V. Anbu, Secretary, Director General & CEO, IMTMA
The union budget released by Finance Minister, Ms Nirmala Sitharaman, is a significant one for India’s manufacturing sector as well as the machine tool industry. As the first ever budget presented by a full-time woman finance minister in India the budget looks a promising one to arrest downturn and steer the country’s economy in the right direction. The lower 25% corporate tax on companies with a turnover of up to Rs. 400 crore is expected to boost investments. It is a positive step towards the development of the MSME sector and enhancing their production capacities. Machine tool industry is the backbone of MSMEs and this bodes well for machine tool manufacturers. Indian machine tool industry has around 1000 units engaged in the production of machine tools, accessories/attachments, subsystems and parts. More than 90% of these are in the MSME sector and this sector stands to benefit immensely from this budget. The ministry’s move will therefore eventually give an uptick to the machine tool industry’s business. Capital goods sector occupies a strategic position in the country’s economy as it provides the machinery and equipment needed for many industries engaged in manufacturing of goods and services. Conventionally the Indian capital goods sector has been dependent on imports. The reduction in customs duty on certain raw materials is expected to promote indigenous manufacturing. The government’s move towards imparting new age skills like artificial intelligence, internet of things, big data, 3D printing, virtual reality, and robotics as a part of the education curriculum can create a large pool of manpower with industry-relevant skills. This will also create avenues for new jobs. The increase in budget outlay for defence, infrastructure development including roads and railways, power, and affordable housing is expected to elevate the demand for construction equipment as well as machines. Machine tool industry needs to gear up to the opportunities that are likely to rise in future. Vibrant manufacturing is imperative for India’s growth. The incentives announced in the budget are but a beginning. It may take some time for the sops to trickle down to the end users resulting in demand for goods and services. Notwithstanding this, the momentum given by the budget is expected to spur manufacturers to renew their activities with vigour. Once such manufacturing hits top gear the country will be on the right track to not just meet $3 trillion targets this year but may join the exclusive $5 trillion economies in the near future.

Dr Santanu Paul, Co-founder and CEO at TalentSprint
It is laudable that the FM in her maiden budget has called out the need for equipping our youth in new-age automation skills such as AI, Robotics, and Big Data. This is a tacit acknowledgement that the world is changing rapidly and our nation’s skill development initiatives need a major overhaul. It is an acceptance of the new global normal where high-end skills command a premium, and low-end skills trade at a discount. To put our demographic abundance to good use, to be an enviable workforce of the world, to create and sustain high wages, and to secure future proof careers for our youth, premium skills steeped in disruptive technologies are the way forward. As waves of automation and innovation sweep through developed and developing economies, destroying old jobs and replacing them with new ones, our education and skill development ecosystems must reinvent their purpose, so that our youth may emerge as winners.