Report by Ananta Prasad, Bhubaneswar: Legislators, educationists and Civil Society members pluralized the concern of NCE in saying NO to privatization in the name of‘Public Private Partnership(PPP’) in education. They were of the view that Education and health are a basic duty of the Government and therefore it should not be handed over to private players. It is a matter of concern that India has missed many of the Education for all (EFA) and MDG goals. The poor and marginalized people have been more marginalized from health and education. They will be more marginalized if education is privatized in the name of PPP.
The programme was organized by National Coalition for Education in collaboration with Odisha RTE Forum and All Utkal Primary Teachers Federation,at Hotel Keshari, Bhubaneswar.
Addressing the gathering Mr.Prasad Harichandan,MLA Satyabadi and Chief Whip,Opposition party,Odisha Legislative Assembly, lamented on the apathy of present State Government on basic services like education and health. He said that the initiatives of the state government to run hospitals on PPP Mode have not resulted in affirmative outcome. Because the so called PPP is a mere institutional arrangement and thus it has missed the principle of PPP. Therefore,the government should rethink on the matter and roll back their decision on PPP Involvement in education. It is also worth mentioning that India has a welfare based constitution where health and education are the obligation of the state which it cannot at all hand over to private players.
Explaining on the issue, Dr. RamakantRai, Country Convener, NCE said thatThe State Government has fulfilledthe necessary route so that education in PPP Mode can ready to take off. In this regard, the Empowered Committee on Infrastructure (ECI) for PPP projects in Education in Odisha had identified three predominantly tribal districts of Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar and Rayagada for siting the schools to be constructed in PPP mode. The private partners of the model schools would look after almost all matters from faculty to management. According to the media source,, the ST & SC Development Department had asked the collectors of the districts on July 30 to identify 10 acres land for setting up the model schools.
This is very much paradoxical to the RTE Act 2009 as the proposed schools will collect nominal fees from the students and the schools proprietors will be out of any public scanner. On the other hand, where tribal children drop out has increased upto 60% in tribal dominated district due to lack of learning material in their own languages,how does the government thinks to open English medium public school in such places,questionedDr.Rai.
Pointing on the importance of public measures,Mr.PanchananKanungo, Former Finance Minister of State argued that the state government is shifting its responsibility in many cases.However,Education and Health sector should not be shifted to private players or corporates.
Among others, Mr.AlekhJena,MLA,Rajnagar,Bureau Chief of The Financial Express Mr.DillipBisoi,State RTE Forum Convener Mr.AnilPradhan and members of Civil society Organizations,educationists were present in this workshop.