NewsBarons connect with the leading educational institutes and learning solution providers to share their views on the announced Budget 2019.
Budget 2019 lays down progressive measures
Rohit Manglik, EduGorilla
This year’s Budget lays down progressive measures which, if implemented well, will certainly take economy onto a higher trajectory. The Budget is notable for its roadmap for 2030 focussing on ten dimensions which are key growth drivers of the Indian economy. This year’s Budget gives a reason for SMEs to cheer considering various incentives announced by government to propel their growth. Various tax benefits and thrust on ‘Make in India’ is a testimony to the government’s intent of encouraging entrepreneurship; enabling India to emerge as the startup hub where Job Seeker is now the Job Creator. The move to source atleast 3% material from women-owned SMEs by Government enterprises will provide an impetus to women entrepreneurship.
In the education sector, the government has already implemented various policy reforms. With emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Realty already making a significant impact in every sphere, the move to launch the National Artificial Intelligence Portal is a commendable one. The education sector will receive a boost with the focus on strengthening the digital infrastructure. It can be a game-changer in making education affordable and facilitate access to education among youth in every nook and corner of the country.
Positive momentum for rural women but still falling short
Prof. Chaitanya Ravi, FLAME University
Finance Minister Piyush Goyal’s promise that the interim budget would sustain the government’s shift in focus from women’s development to “women-led development” is the reaffirmation of the government’s regular talking point on social media. Of special relevance is the focus on continuing the successful Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana to poor families which has played a vital role in the fight against indoor pollution and the lack of clean and safe cooking fuel for rural women across the country. While his commitment to substantially increase the disbursement of free LPG cylinders from the current 6 crore connections spread across 715 districts to 8 crore connections by 2020 is welcome, what’s missing are additional subsidies that could have eased the burden for eligible rural women to access cylinder refills beyond the first one, which the Yojana currently provides. A program, which has successfully increased the coverage of LPG connections in India from 55% to almost 90% has been broadened by the current budget. It could also have been deepened. Rural families, especially women who do the bulk of household chores still face formidable challenges in accessing clean cooking fuel while suffering disproportionately from the health ramifications of sustained firewood use. While the government’s women’s empowerment initiatives for urban women in the formal sector such as its reaffirmation of the enhanced maternity leave program are welcome, rural women deserve more than the current INR 1600 subsidy provided to LPG gas distributors for every free connection.
Budget 2019 has clearly recognised the importance of technology
Ishan Gupta, Udacity India
The budget has clearly recognised the importance of technology in the growth of the country by announcing the development of the National Artificial Intelligence Portal. Government move to convert Indian Villages to Digital Villages in next 5 years with 1 lakh digital villages seems to be promising as this would help us educating more and more learners in tier – 2 and tier – 3 cities. We welcome and look forward to India’s startup growth where the country has become the second largest hub for startups with youth turning into job creators from job seekers.
Budget 2019 aims to foster the growth of our economy again
Anil Nagar, ADDA247
The budget of 2019 has addressed key areas that will help the economy grow in the coming year. The main concerns of making India digital has been taken into consideration. The step towards converting Indian Villages to Digital Villages in next 5 years with 1 lakh digital villages seems to be promising as this would help us educate more and more learners in tier – 2 and tier – 3 cities. We are also positive with regards to India’s startup growth where India has become the 2nd largest hub for startups with our youth turning into job creators from seekers. It also has noticeably recognized the importance of technology in the growth of the country by announcing the development of National Artificial Intelligence Portal. To sum up The Budget as a whole is balanced with respect to each sector and aims to foster the growth of our economy again.
Setting up a national centre for AI is a welcome move
Shobhit Bhatnagar, Gradeup
The budget announcement that the Government will set up a national centre for artificial intelligence to look into AI programmes is a welcome move. With this, we hope that we get the right set of people, agency and minds to lead this initiative. A policy was much needed from the government around usage of data and AI, so that India can lever on its own creation of data and not just be a digital colony. India is fast becoming the largest consumer of data in the world and we are generating a lot of data while innovating new products and reaching out to new audiences. If this policy is made and executed correctly with the right system design, it will also be a great value add for consumer startups.
Government’s push to the unorganized sector is a welcome step for the logistics vertical
Divya Jain, Safeducate
The Government’s push to the unorganized sector is a welcome step for the logistics vertical, which is characterized by a large number of unorganized players; and the pension scheme for the 4.2 crore workers in the numerous industries announced, in a way will help in streamlining the workforce and will address the issue of giving a decent life to them post their working age. With the scheme of modernizing the villages, and going digital will help in Skilling the youths in such villages, making them self-reliant and finding progressive careers for themselves while contributing to the household incomes as well. In most of the villages, women are still not allowed to go out of their homes – Digital villages will help to reach those women and skill them. Even though through various schemes such as PM Mudra Yojana, Government have been trying to educate women and work towards the cause of women empowerment, but still a lot of women have been deprived of it – Digital villages will likely ensure such benefits reach them faster now.
Digital India scheme is aimed at bringing digital infrastructure across the country
Beas Dev Ralhan, NextEducation India Pvt. Ltd.
India needs to integrate itself with the global big bang of technology, and the government has taken a welcome step towards it by declaring a nationwide programme on Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the Union Budget 2019. This programme involves the establishment of a National Centre for Artificial Intelligence along with other centres of excellence, and the development of a national AI portal for the advancement of 9 high-priority areas including education. This will help us catch up with the leading nations such as the US and China, who are using AI and data sciences to personalising education. Apart from this, the Digital India scheme, with more than 3 lakh common service centres, is aimed at bringing digital infrastructure to every nook and corner of the country. The government intends to build 1 lakh digital villages with an internet connection and digital devices in the next few years. This, in collaboration with EdTech companies like us, will help realise the national vision of ‘Education for All’.The National Education Mission has been allocated just 38,572 crores. However, we were expecting a better cut towards the education sector.
Budget 2019 covers issues related to agriculture sector, SMEs and Middle class
Amol Arora, Shemford Group of Futuristic Schools
The interim budget 2019 impressed everyone with a balanced approach as expected in the election year. It covered issues related to the agriculture sector, small & medium enterprises, aspirations of middle class, etc. It is a ‘please all’ budget; and at the same time, it will help in maintaining a healthy fiscal deficit. However, more could have been done to enhance the condition of the education sector. There’s still a need for a proactive approach considering the fact that investment in this sector offers the highest ROI in the long term. But most democratic governments concentrate more on short term gains. As it was an interim budget, we were not expecting any revolutionary steps. I hope the next budget will be more education-focused.
Well balanced budget with focus on addressing the fundamental needs of education
Abhishek Dubey, Muskaan Dreams
The government has presented a well-balanced budget with a focus on addressing the fundamental needs of education in India. The government has raised the bar, by introducing schemes that will help bridge the rural-urban gap, both in the economic and educational sector. A budget of 38,572 crores in BE (Budget Estimate) is allocated for National Education Mission. 10% reservation in educational institutes and government services for the poor has been implemented, to ensure that there is no shortfall of available seats for any class, and uplift the backward classes.
The government has also planned upon developing one lakh digital schools around the country in the next 5 years, I think digital villages will become a great move for this govt, it will enhance skills of rural youth also help them to get a better job. Most of the startups are working in Tech based solutions and it helps youth to get the job. It will help them to learn about digital technology or skills-based programme. India is amongst the most youthful nations in the world, and through policies focused on the youth of the nation, like Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana, great economic development can take place.
I am glad that the concept of employment is changing in India with job-seekers becoming job-creators. The interim budget is expected to offer a big revolution to the nation’s economy.