Shillong, Nov 17 (IANS) Union Tribal Affairs Minister Jual Oram on Saturday announced Rs 720 crore for setting up of Ekalavya model residential schools in 36 blocks of Meghalaya.
“Every block with more than 50 per cent ST population and at least 20,000 tribal people, will have an Ekalavya model residential school by 2022,” he said at the inauguration of Rev Fr D.J. Wollaston Annexe building of St Anthony’s College, in Meghalaya capital Shillong.
Oram said construction of two such schools is currently undergoing in two different places in Meghalaya, at Samanda in East Garo Hills district and Nongpoh in Ri-Bhoi district.
He said the cost for setting each school is Rs 20 crore and the construction of the 36 schools would be completed in three years.
“The central government plans to build over 500 such schools across India. At present, there are 192 such schools all over the country,” the Union Minister said.
He said the Ekalavya schools will be on par with Navodaya Vidyalayas and will have special facilities for preserving local art and culture besides providing training in sports and skill development.
Oram said the budget of the Union Tribal Affairs budget has increased from Rs 800 crore in the 1990s to more than Rs 5,000 crore under this financial year.