Ex-bureaucrat calls for opposing DNEP

The former bureaucrat S. Sasikanth Senthil addressing a press conference in Raichur on Wednesday.

The former bureaucrat S. Sasikanth Senthil addressing a press conference in Raichur on Wednesday.   | Photo Credit: SANTOSH SAGAR

Sasikanth Senthil criticises BJP for ‘centralisation of everything’

Criticising the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi for, what he termed, “over-emphasis on the centralisation of everything”, the former bureaucrat S. Sasikanth Senthil said that the Draft National Education Policy (DNEP) – 2019 was also a part of grand scheme.

“We should oppose it as it is quite against the very spirit of India’s federalism and regional aspirations,” he said.

He, along with education activist Syed Hafeez Ulha, was addressing a press conference here on Wednesday.

Referring to certain recommendations in the DNEP-2019, Mr. Senthil said that the draft policy clearly encouraged the commercialisation of education by asking the State to withdraw from education sector.

“The State is duty-bound to offer education and health services either free or at affordable costs. But, the DNEP-2019 has many recommendations that encourage the State to withdraw from this basic responsibility. It suggests cutting funds to education in the name of self-reliance. State withdrawal from education essentially means the promotion of privatisation of education,” he said.

Criticising the Union government for its National Register of Citizens (NRC) exercise, Mr. Senthil said that the government should focus on important things such as poverty, joblessness and illiteracy.

“The Union government had spent ₹1,600 crore for conducting NRC in Assam. Our Home Ministers says that it would be extended to the entire country. Imagine how much of money will have to be spent for it. With my experience of working in the bureaucracy for 10 years, I know the difficulties in surveying a district. If NRC is extended to India, it will drain not just our exchequer, but the energy of our public servants. Does it contribute in any way to address any burning problem such as poverty and joblessness?,” he said.

Pointing to the emerging economic slowdown, Mr. Senthil said that the country was being led on the path of severe crisis.

“The government presents a ₹1.74 lakh crore deficit budget. It doesn’t know where it would bring the money from for the programmes and projects it announced in the budget. It is just to mislead and cheat the people of the country. Most of the promises in the budget would be turned into hoaxes as the government cannot generate the revenues,” he said.

When asked, Mr. Senthil clarified that his resignation to the civil services was not caused by any pressure or interference from any politicians or force.

“I strongly felt that the things were not moving in the right directions. I felt that the foundations of our Constitution were being shaken and our social fabric of peaceful coexistence of different communities with diverse cultural backgrounds was being torn apart. Being a civil servant, it would be unethical and impossible form to criticise the government,” he said.

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Printable version | Feb 29, 2020 10:44:16 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/ex-bureaucrat-calls-for-opposing-dnep/article30098856.ece

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