Higher education fund for Madhya Pradesh’s meritorious talent

BHOPAL: Under its ambitious plan to promote meritorious talent, Madhya Pradesh government is expected to announce a higher education fund to help students pursue higher studies. The announcement will be made by chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan at Vidyarthi Panchayat (students’ convention) called by higher education department, on January 12.

“A higher education fund will be set up to assist talented students, who cannot go for higher and technical education due to lack of money. The state government is committed to ensuring that no student is deprived of education due to lack of facilities,” Chouhan had said at a Raisen programme, organised in June last year, while distributing laptops to meritorious students. Later, on December 4, while celebrating 11 years in office, the CM had hinted that the government is soon going to set up a fund for talented students of all categories to promote higher education. Now, it seems that he is going to disclose his ambitious scheme at the Vidyarthi Panchayat on January 12.

“The chief minister has clearly given instructions to chalk out a detailed policy to fund higher studies of talented and meritorious students – SCs, STs, backwards and general class – and who can earn laurels for the state and the country. Government will provide them all possible help,” said sources in the secretariat. During the programme, CM will also interact with the students. The higher education department has invited 50 students each from all the 51 districts of the state. Those invited will include 25 students each from schools and colleges.
“We are arranging an interaction between chief minister and students, where the latter can directly communicate and express themselves. It will last two hours during which the CM will listen to the students about their problems and requirements besides any help they want from the government to achieve excellence,” said higher education department’s principal secretary Ashish Upadhyay.

Sources in the state secretariat said that Chouhan is also going to announce the department’s plan for abolishing semester and initiating student elections in colleges.

Though higher education minister Jaibhan Singh Pavaiyya had already revealed government stand on the issues of college semester and polls during Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) meeting held in September 2016 in Bhopal, Chouhan will formally declare the same. Notwithstanding state government taking a number of measures to ensure quality education and provide facilities, paucity of funds may pose a major hurdle for the department in financing higher studies.