New Delhi, July 29: The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) is back to being Ministry of Education with the Union Cabinet approving the change in its name on Wednesday.
The name change was among the key recommendations of the draft New Education Policy, which was also cleared in Wednesday’s Cabinet meeting.
The Ministry of Education was renamed as the HRD ministry in 1985, during the tenure of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. The next year the National Education Policy (NEP) was introduced which was later amended in 1992.
PV Narasimha Rao became the first HRD minister in the Rajiv Gandhi Cabinet.
A panel headed by former ISRO Chairman K Kasturirangan, tasked with working on the new NEP, had first proposed that the name of the ministry should be changed again.
In 2018, the idea was also mooted by Ram Bahadur Rai, chairman of the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts and also chairman of the joint organising committee of the Conference on Academic Leadership on Education for Resurgence.
At a conference organsied by RSS affiliate Bharatiya Shikshan Mandal, Rao had suggesting that former PM Rajiv Gandhi had changed the name of the education ministry to HRD ministry in September 1985 under the advice of some “people who may have misled him”, and opined that “treating education or humans as resource is against Indian values that look at education more holistically”.
A new education policy was part of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s manifesto ahead of the 2014 general election.
The K Kasturirangan panel had submitted the draft of the new NEP to Union Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ when he took charge last year.
The drafting experts also took into account the report of a panel headed by former cabinet secretary T S R Subramanian and formed by the HRD Ministry when it was headed by Union Minister Smriti Irani. (PTI)