The cabinet Thursday approved the setting up of a model college in each of the 374 districts identified as educationally backward.
Less than 12 students out of every 100 studying in secondary schools go to colleges in these districts.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the introduction of a new scheme to provide central assistance for setting up of a model degree college in each of these educationally backward districts.
On an average, each model college will have 500 students and thus, the total number to be enrolled in the 374 colleges will be about 187,000.
The selection of these districts was made on the basis of gross enrolment ratio in higher education.
At present, nearly 13 percent of secondary school students in India ever go to college. The situation is even worse in the above 374 districts.
Under the scheme, the central government shall provide 33 percent of expenditure for setting up of these model colleges in financially well off states. For economically backward states, the share of the centre will be 50 percent of the capital cost, which is around Rs.40 million.
The cabinet said the total funds required for establishing these colleges will be around Rs.29.92 billion and the central government will fund about Rs.10.79 billion. The rest will be taken care by the respective state governments. The land shall be provided free of cost by the state governments.
The cabinet said a clear agreement will be signed with each state before releasing any funds.
–Indo-Asian News Service