PTI false report on Yogi’s Government Education Budget! Was it intentionally?

The much-awaited first Budget of the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh (UP) presented in the state On July 11, 2017.

PTI reported the detailed UP education Budget on July 11, 2017 and Claimed as below-

“The government has also cut the budgetary provisions for secondary education and higher education compared to that of previous government dispensation.

In the 2016-17 budget presented by the erstwhile Akhilesh Yadav government, a provision of Rs 9,990 crore was made for secondary education, which has came down to only Rs 576 crore in the Yogi Adityanath government, a reduction of Rs 9,414 crore.

The higher education sector also saw a significant cut. Last year’s budget had a provision of Rs 2,742 crore, while this year it was Rs 272.77 crore, marking a shortfall of Rs Rs 2,469.73 crore.”

This PTI report has been followed by most of the media and social media. This report has been the source of much outrage and provided food for hungry stomach! Opposition started trolling UP Government and Yogi Adityanath.

PTI seems to have not looked at the Budget Estimate documents at all but only at the parts of the Budget Estimate document that were spoken about in the UP Budget speech. This is a basic error since most budgets have a detailed fine print, out of which only some parts are mentioned in the speech.

Uttar Pradesh deputy Chief Minister and education minister Dinesh Sharma told in media that the said figures in the news report were completely wrong and the government had paid full attention to education. The Chief Minister’s Office on Sunday issued a statement saying the total budget for education (basic, secondary and higher education) in the present budget has risen by 25.4% from Rs 49607 Cr last year to Rs 62185 Cr.

Here is the Budget Estimate 2017-18 clear all doubts on UP’s education budget.

Secondary Education allocations:

In Akhilesh Yadav’s 2016-17 budgets, secondary education was allocated an estimation of Rs 8956.83 crores and not Rs 9,990 crore as mentioned by PTI.

The Yogi Adityanath government has allocated Rs 9387.43 crores for secondary education in its budget. This is clearly more than Akhilesh government’s allocation.

Higher Education allocations:

For higher education, the Akhilesh government had allocated Rs 2585 crores in the 2016-17 UP Budget. The Yogi Adityanath government in its Budget 2017-18 has allocated Rs 2655.80 crores. This too is a clear increase over the earlier allocation.

Overall, both secondary education and higher education have seen increases over earlier allocation and not cuts. Since such reports and figures are sensitive, PTI should have been much attentive before releasing it into public domain. This might create kind of unhealthy situations in public and social media.

Otherwise, such wrong information leads to so many speculations on PTI report. Was PTI running a deliberately false report to malign a newly formed state government? Was it due to incompetence or intentionally? What was the reason to hide the true picture of budget?

However this might be alarm for PTI’s future reports. This kind of wrong, unverified, irresponsible report will surely harm the credibility of PTI.

Anusha Shetty