Monday, December 3, 2012

Congress promises free laptops to students

Gujarat EDN
DNA   05SEP2012

Party focuses on improving education facilities in its sixth poll promise
DNA Correspondent
Setting another agenda, Gujarat Congress on Tuesday afternoon announced that they would give free laptops to all students after class XII in the state if voted to power in 2012 Assembly elections.
After fuel, housing and health, education is the sixth point under their 12-point 'Gujarat Praja Vikas Darshan 2012' - a list of promises if they form the government. The list of promises in the education sector includes payment of 30% of fees for students from poor to middle class families studying in self-financed colleges. Laying impetus on sports, state party president Arjun Modhwadia said no new schools will be given sanction without a playground and library. He also talked about formation of Gujarat Olympics Academy to train world-class sportspersons and sports complexes to be established at taluka level. “We will also re-establish elections of student unions of schools and colleges in a democratic way,” said Modhwadia, who himself rose through the ranks of the party from an NSUI leader.
The party hit out at some sore points of the incumbent establishment by promising no nepotism in appointments of vice-chancellors, and appointment of English teachers in government primary schools, as also to restart the regional languages schools currently shut down. “Urdu, Sindhi, Tamil language schools by AMC are among the many that have shut down. We will restart them,” he avowed.
Elaborating further on providing free laptops to students, Modhwadia later said giving free laptops to students is not that expensive, if the free sops given to industries are stopped. “If bought in bulk, a laptop can be bought for Rs 10,000. According to statistics, around nine lakh students clear higher secondary every year,” he said.
Election committee chairman Shankersinh Vaghela said the number of students and teachers has only reduced in the last decade, despite the population of Gujarat substantially increasing this time. “The number of teachers in middle and higher education in Gujarat in 2009-10 was 86,775 which reduced to 74,926 in 2010-11. The total number of students that entered school in 2002 was 16.5 lakh. The batch of students that cleared 12th grade in Gujarat reduced to 9.75 lakh - atleast 40% less. Where did all these students go? And Modi says this is development?”he roared.