An agreement has been signed between the World Bank and the government of India which would result in the international organization issuing a loan of $201.50 million towards high quality education in engineering for several Indian states. This agreement for the loan is one part of the fifteen to twenty year programme which was started in 2002 known as the Technical Education Quality Improvement Project (TEQIP III), which is now in its third phase.
The Technical Education Quality Improvement Project has been responsible for supporting over 250 institutions that teach engineering across India, including institutes such as NIT Surathkal, Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University Hyderabad, College of Engineering Pune as well as BIT Mesra. The World Bank released a statement which said that TEQIP III has been recognised as having made a considerable and appreciable impact on the quality as well as the accessibility of education in engineering which has been achieved by the implementation of both institutional reforms and reforms in policy which focus on the autonomy of institutions and their accountability.
What the Project Focuses on
The main focus of this project would be to strengthen the level of engineering education in the North Eastern low-income, hill states in India. For the first time, the affiliation of technical universities would be supported by TEQIP III, which would multiply the benefits provided to all of the affiliated colleges and not only those that are currently supported at an individual level. The World Bank, which is based out of Washington DC, has put an estimation out that indicates that close to 30 lakh students who consist of both under-graduate as well as post-graduates would be the beneficiaries of this project.
About 30% of those who benefit from this initiative would be female students and 20% would be those who belong to scheduled castes and scheduled tribes. The move would also be one that scales up the post-graduate education in the country including fields like research and development as well as innovation at the institutions that are a part of the project.
This agreement was put down by two key people holding major portfolios representing both sides. From the finance Ministry of India, the Joint Secretary Raj Kumar had signed and from the World Bank, its Country Director for India, Junaid Ahmad. The latest phase of the Technical Education Quality Improvement Project would be focussing on imparting key skill training to entrants in the labour market in a more equitable manner than previously seen across India by narrowing down its scope to states where there are relatively poorly performing educational set-ups in the field of engineering study.
Junaid Ahmad felt that TEQIP III’s focus on the bolstering of education in engineering along with research would help the prospective entrants into the labour market to acquire the skills they would need to be a part of a workforce of global-standard technical capabilities. He went on to say that the project would also boost India towards meeting its growing demand for engineers who are highly qualified. The World Bank Itself stated that a significant portion of the project’s efforts would be dedicated towards the evaluation and monitoring of the project to be assured that these investments would result in a significantly improved performance of the institutions which have been selected.