Looking to capitalise on the introduction of 5G technology in the state, the Himachal Pradesh government intends to bring in sweeping tech-powered changes into the education sector, chief minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu said on Wednesday.
His comments came at the event organised by Hamirpur Students’ Association at Himachal Pradesh University (HPU), Shimla.
Sukhu said the government was planning to introduce new technical courses in educational institutions of the state, so that the youth could get better employment and self-employment opportunities. He said courses like robotics, blockchain technology, cyber Security, cloud computing data analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning could provide better employment opportunities to the youth.
To provide quality education in rural areas, the chief minister said, a Rajiv Gandhi Day Boarding School was being set up in every assembly constituency in phases, for which provision of ₹300 crore has been made. Additionally, to ensure that poor students are not deprived of higher education, they will be provided loans at one percent interest rate.
“Legal rights have been given to 6,000 orphans by giving them the status of ‘children of the state’ and it will be the responsibility of the government to take care of them till they attain the age of 27 years,” the CM said, adding that the expenses of their fee, hostels, pocket money of ₹4,000 per month, cloth allowance and festival allowance as well as the expenses of 15 days exposure visit once in a year will also be borne by the state government.
Sukhu said the state government was making earnest efforts to provide quality education to the students in higher education.
The varsity was given an additional grant of ₹50 crore, with the CM saying the present government has resolved to revamp the system.
Sukhu also reminisced over his years as a student at the varsity, adding that it was necessary to remember our past to meet the challenges of the future. “It is the responsibility of the young generation to preserve the rich culture of Himachal Pradesh,” he added.
CM directs formulation of SoPs for felling of dry trees
Sukhu also presided over a meeting of the Himachal Pradesh Forest Corporation on Wednesday, announcing that the marking of dried trees on the forest land would be done on a daily basis in the state and responsibility of the concerned divisional forest officers (DFO) will be fixed to ensure that the task is complete in a time bound manner.
He said the state government would take stringent action against the erring officers, before directing the DFOs to prepare a list of dried-up trees by June 15, 2023, mark them and send them to the corporation for felling.
The CM also issued directions for the formulation of a standard operating procedure (SoP) in this regard and submitting of a report at the earliest. He said the delay in cutting of dried-up trees was inflicting a financial loss of ₹1,000 crore per annum onto the state.
He went on to stress upon effective marketing of timber to help enhance revenue and directed the authorities concerned to convene a meeting of the corporation on June 8 to review the progress of decisions taken in the meeting today.
The decision to empanel contractors for felling the dried trees in time was also announced.
Chief parliamentary secretaries Sunder Singh Thakur and Prabodh Saxena, forest corporation vice-chairperson Kehar Singh Khachi, forests principal secretary Onkar Chand Sharma were among others in attendance.