By Gaurav Vohra, Co-Founder & CEO, Jigsaw Academy
“I am hoping for a large allocation from the Government of India for online education for MOOCs (Massive Online Open Courses) through the HRD ministry under the Swayam Bharat programme. In the interim budget presented by this Government, it had shown its thrust on digitization which was an encouraging step. I expect more details to emerge about various initiatives under Digital India and their budgetary allocations.
Online education has the power to break down geographical barriers and the need for physical infrastructure. Someone sitting in a small town in India can learn from the best teachers and access the most up to date content on any topic through online learning. The best teachers can reach thousands of students at one time in a virtual classroom instead of a few dozen that can be accommodated in a physical class. This makes online education especially relevant for a large and populous country like ours. The Government should therefore provide special incentives to encourage the development of online education in India.
As an online school of analytics, I would also want to see the Government increase spend on Big Data initiatives particularly in the light of the ambitious plans unveiled under Digital India. Government should unveil plans for deployment of Big Data in national security, to address infrastructure problems etc. It should also announce measures to create more analytics hubs like the ones in Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru.
Overall, I feel the budget will look at boosting the start-up ecosystem beyond Bengaluru and across cities and also announce steps catering to ‘ease of doing business’ in India.”