The Cess Mess
So, what did the very erudite Finance Minister of India do to improve the Education Sector in India ?
He increased the Education Cess from 2% to 3%. What a Short Sighted Short Cut.
- The decision to levy the new cess comes despite the fact that the Centre has spent only 39% of the funds under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, raised by the education cess in the first eight months of 2006-07 - as per this Financial Express Report! If this is not a JOKE, what else is it ? In any other country - such foolhardiness could land lawmakers in a court of law for wasting public money!
- And in year 2005 what was the state of things? The Rs 13,000 crores cess collected over the previous two years was found unused for education. This is higher than the Rs 12,537 crores budget allocation to elementary education -- a crying shame what else!
- Primay Education is a State Subject - collecting money in its name is not the going to solve anything other than filling govt. coffers. Unaccountable State Education Ministers will continue to sleep and do what they wish - while experts can keep crying hoarse - who cares - after all a few expert votes don't count for much. As long as majority can be hoodwinked thats good enough. What say?
- It is more than likely this move is meant to collect money to fund reservations. Now, i wonder if the earlier statement about Short Sightedness was wrong after all. And true that is - Arjun Singh says: 'some good news for Muslims, they would benefit from additional one per cent education cess, apart from expansion of higher education and implementation of 27 per OBC quota'. Now dear sir - first you are unable to use the money you collected last year, next you want to use the collected money for your political gains - what is going on. It would be wise, if you act as HRD Minister for the whole country - and not your own chosen vote banks.
Well, South East Asian countries - Malaysia, Indonesia and Phillipines have raced ahead in literacy and primary education - because thats their real goal. Get to 100% literacy. We have doublespeak and short sightedness and empty boast, therefore, we sure do not achieve our goals of literacy - and therefore 30% of Worlds Illiterates are in India.
There is a whole bunch of such Cess crap floating around (Education is not the only one); which usually smack of: You pay for my Sins, And i will continue to Sin! huh.
Random Thought : An extra-ordinary number of Professional Colleges ( Engineering / Medical etc. ) are owned by Politicians in India.