HomeWord’s Worth

Punjab announces 16 new medical colleges and 9 libraries in the new budget

Punjab Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema today presented Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government’s first budget for the Financial Year 2022-23, with the education sector getting a 16 per cent increase. The state government has announced to upgrade 100 new schools, called School of Excellence.

Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema announced that the focus in the first year of the government will be to restore deteriorating fiscal health, deliver on the promises of good governance and concentrate on health, agriculture and education.

Cheema said the government has proposed to start the Punjab Young Entrepreneur programme to encourage class 11 students to propose their business ideas.

While presenting Punjab Budget, Cheema announced that 100 schools proposed to be upgraded as Schools of Eminence. These composite schools from Pre-Primary to 12th std will be equipped with advanced infrastructures like digital classrooms, fully-equipped labs, vocational training facilities and trained faculty. Rs 200 crore has been earmarked for this purpose.

Along with this, modern digital classrooms will be established in 500 government schools.

In line with Delhi, the Punjab government has announced to start Young Entrepreneur Programme where class 11 students would be encouraged to propose their original business ideas, which would be supported by the Government by providing seed money at Rs 2000 per student.

The state government will provide seed money of Rs 2,000 per student under this programme, the finance minister said as he presented the paperless budget.

Cheema said: “The government has decided to approve fresh recruitment of 26,454 people and regularisation of 36,000 contractual employees.”

School Education

The Bhagwant Mann government has increased budgetary outlays by 16.27% for School and Higher education. There is around a 48% increase in the allocation of Technical Education over 2021-22. While 57% increase in the allocation of Medical Education and Research over 2021-22.

The state government will also appoint ‘Estate Managers’ for the upkeep of government schools and has allocated Rs 123 crore for this.

Rs 30 crore has been allocated for imparting training and capacity ISP building of teachers/ heads/ principals Undertake services of specialized Agencies/ Research Institutes for conducting impact and outcome analysis of various schemes under education sector.

Rs 200 crores have been allocated for 100 existing schools to be upgraded as “Schools of Eminence be equipped with superlative infrastructure. Rs 140 crore budget outlay for Modern Digital Classrooms in Government Schools.

Rs 424 crore has been allocated for providing world-class school infrastructure in every district of Punjab. Rs 23 crores allocated for providing uniform to all students studying in Class 1 to 8 also and to all Pre-Primary students of Government schools at Rs 600/- per student.

Start-up Programme for class 11th students with seed money of Rs 2000 per student and Rs 473 crore is made towards Mid-Day Meal scheme.

The state government has allocated Rs 1351 crore allocated for Samagraha Siksha Abhiyan. For Pre-matric scholarship to one lakh, OBC students-Rs 67 crores and for Pre-matric scholarship to 2.40 lakh SC students- Rs 79 crore.

Medical Education

There is a 57 per cent increase in allocation for the medical education and research sector compared to 2021-22. The state government plans to set up 16 new Medical colleges making a total of 25 Medical colleges over a period the next five years.

Sant Baba Attar Singh State Institute of Medical Sciences is to be established in district Sangrur with 100 MBBS seats with an initial allocation of Rs 50 crore. It also plans to start the Punjab Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences” at Sahibzada Ajit Singh (SAS) Nagar (Mohali).

Higher and Technical Education

Cheema announced that Rs 200 crore for Punjabi University, Patiala to develop and promote mother-tongue Punjabi. 45 Infrastructure facilities in libraries of Government Colleges of 9 districts, with an allocation of Rs 30 crores.

To encourage students of poor families, especially of General Category to study in Government colleges, the state has allocated Rs 30 crores. Infrastructure and creation of new facilities in NCC units and NCC training centres, it has allocated Rs 5 crores.

For technical education, the state has allocated Rs 641 crores with the main focus on strengthening, modernization and expansion of the existing systems. The state also plans to impart practical training through internships, field visits, and skill development projects along with classroom training.

There is also a 32% increase in the allocation of Employment Generation and Training. The Punjab government has allocated Rs 714 crore for recruitment to 26,454 government posts. Additional provision of Rs 540 crore for regularisation of 36,000 contractual employees.

For skill development of 250 college/university students by Skill Vigyan Centre of Punjab State Council for Science & Technology in advanced science & technology domains.