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Higher education: Uttar Pradesh tops, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal follow

Economic Times:  December, 2016

New Delhi: CII-Deloitte released a report on the "Annual Status of Higher Education of States and UTs in India 2016" (ASHE 2016). The report discusses key reforms outlined by the government such as the draft education policy, the draft scheme for "World Class" institutions and the National Institutional Ranking Framework.

According to the report, of the total enrolment of 342.1 lakhs students (54% male and 46% female enrolments) in higher education institutes in India, Uttar Pradesh ranks first (60.6 lakhs, 17.7%), followed by Maharashtra (37.4 lakhs, 10.9%), Tamil Nadu (33.5 lakhs, 9.8%), West Bengal (19 lakhs, 5.6%) and Karnataka (18.9 lakhs, 5.5%). The five southern states of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka accounts for nearly one-third (30%) of the total enrolments across India, with 19.3% of the country share of 18-23 population.

The report also points out that the highest share of enrolment (79.4%) is at undergraduate level, followed by post-graduate (11.3%) and Diploma (7.3%), with all other levels forming < 2%. Female enrolment has been highest in M.Phil. (57.7%), Certificate (56.4%) and post graduate courses (51.5%).

The total number of universities in India has gone up from 620 in 2010-11 to 760 in 2014-15, growing at a CAGR of 5.22%. The number of government universities (including central, institutes of national importance, state public, government deemed and a few others) have gone up from 439 in 2010-11 to 494 in 2014-15, growing at a CAGR of 2.99%. However, the number of private universities (including state private and private deemed) have gone up from 181 in 2010-11 to 266 in 2014-15, growing at a much faster CAGR of 10.10%. The top five states with the highest number of universities include Rajasthan (64, 8.4% of total in India), Uttar Pradesh (63, 8.3 %), Tamil Nadu (58, 7.6%), Karnataka (51, 6.7%) and Gujarat (49, 6.4%).

The report adds some of the key reforms brought to the public domain and their possible impact on the Higher Education sector and the Indian economy like support provided by UK to the Higher Education system in India, with 2016 declared as UK-India year of Education, Research & Innovation and the ambitious plan of MHRD to develop 10 Public and 10 Private institutions as World Class Institutions.

"The Higher Education sector in India currently finds itself at a very critical juncture. Efforts of the policy makers can be seen through the operationalisation of the vision and the mission of the New Education Policy which will affect the higher education space for a progressive realisation. Given the government's intent to increase accessibility of educational programmes, aligning higher education with skill development objectives, integrating Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in Education, improving and encouraging enhanced financing for education development programmes amongst other, an extremely positive outlook for the sector is foreseen," said, Anindya Mallick, partner, Deloitte India.