The Education sector must be provided with the appropirate tax exemptions so that it can attract more investment and in its recommendations for reforms in higher education, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) said that India's education sector requires huge investments. According to the Chamber the 11th Plan allocation for higher and technical education, which is Rs.849.43 billion, is insufficient to meet the needs of the country.
"The Government has allocated Rs.306.82 billion to establish 16 central universities, 370 colleges, eight Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), seven Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs), 10 National Institutes of Technology (NITs), 20 Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISERs), and 50 centres for training and research in frontier areas," the report said.
"However, according to estimates by the Planning Commission, this fund is not enough and the required resource gap will remain Rs.2.22 trillion," FICCI said. "As per the Planning Commission, the country needs an additional 200 universities. It is thus clear that, public resources would not be sufficient to meet the ever-growing demand for quality in higher education, and increasing private sector investment and partcipation will be required to meet such demands," it added.
The Govern-ment has already asked the FICCI to identify private partners to develop 20 IITs during the 11th Plan period. According to FICCI, the Government's decision to accord deemed university status to foreign universities in India and de-link the quality assurance mechanism from the regulatory authority was in sync with the Chamber's recommedations to the Government on giving a face-lift to the higher education system.