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New Education Policy reflects RSS’ vision of India-centric policy

By IndianMandarins- 30 Jul 2020
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The New Education Policy (NEP) approved by the Union Cabinet has the influence of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) with renaming human resource development (HRD) ministry as education ministry with an emphasis on Indian arts, languages, and culture.

The cabinet on July 29 approved NEP that also seeks to increase public spending on education to 6 percent of GDP from around 4 percent, cap fees, expand access to higher education and achieve universal adult literacy before 2035.

RSS approves of the language used in NEP to describe its vision which speaks of curriculum and pedagogy developing a “deep sense of respect towards the fundamental duties and constitutional values, bonding with one’s country, and conscious awareness of one’s roles and responsibilities in a changing world.

It also refers to the need to instill a deep-rooted pride in being Indian, not only in thought, but also in spirit, intellect, and deeds, which the RSS has been stressing from upon. The RSS wanted NEP to be Indianized further seeking to rewrite of History textbooks with an Indian perspective.

Organizations like Bharatiya Shikshan Mandal (BSM) and the Shiksha Sanskriti Utthan Nyas (SSUN) work in the field of education and culture. They too submitted recommendations to the government. RSS affiliate organizations have long sought the renaming of the HRD ministry. The issue resurfaced at a BSM conference in 2018, where Modi and then HRD minister Prakash Javadekar were among those in attendance.

NEP’s vision for an education system rooted in Indian ethos dovetails with RSS’s demand for an India-centric policy. RSS has sought education to be imparted in the mother tongue and based on a system that borrows from the ancient texts and cultural practices.

The organization has long advocated teaching in the mother tongue, and implementation of the three-language formula to promote multilingualism. NEP addresses this too.

NEP has emphasized the popularisation of Indian languages. Sanskrit will be mainstreamed with strong offerings in school -- including as one of the language options in the three-language formula -- as well as in higher education.

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