Cabinet nod for Right to Education Bill

The UPA Government has given its nod to the Right to Education Bill promising free and compulsory education for children between 6-14 age group.

"The Bill has been considered at several levels by the Group of Ministers (GoM). The Cabinet has approved the text of the Bill," Finance Minister P Chidambaram told reporters on Friday about the decision taken at the Cabinet meeting a day before. This proposal for this legislation has been languishing with the Government since the Parliament passed the 86th Constitutional amendment giving every child between the age of 6 and 14 years the right to free and compulsory educationin December 2002.

The Bill had hit a deadlock over how the states and the Centre will share the financial burden. Subsequently, the Cabinet had referred the issue to a Group of Ministers, which in August, worked out a burden sharing formula acceptable to both sides. Chidambaram, however, refrained from divulging more details citing the code of conduct imposed by the Election Commission in the wake of the state elections.

In another decision, the Cabinet on Friday decided to introduce the South Asian University (SAU) Bill before the Parliament. The idea of setting up SAU was proposed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during the 13th SAARC Summit held in Dhaka in 2005. For the purpose of setting up the university, which is aimed at providing world-class facilities and professional faculty to students and researchers from SAARC countries, the Delhi Development Authority will allot 100 acres of land near Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) in Delhi.

In another major decision, the Cabinet has decided to enact the Public Funded Research and Development (Protection, Utilisation, and Regulation of Intellectual Property) Bill. Apart from providing for scientists and researchers claiming for their share into the intellectual property generated in government funded research and labs, the Bill would also provide uniform legal framework for protection and utilisation of the intellectual property rights generated by Government funding.

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