After attracting students from SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) countries, the government of India wants to woo students from developed nations, including the US and the UK, to come and study courses such as historic languages, Yoga and others specific to India.
The AIU (Association of Indian Universities), an organization representing India’s universities, has conveyed to all varsities to promote special courses offered by them in order that more international students will come and study in India.
The Indian government is looking to make use of education as a prospective export source for generating revenue by getting more foreign students to come to India. The Ministry of Commerce is said to be evincing a lot of interest in making education an export product. It is said to have urged the concerned departments to lay out a roadmap to attract more international students.
‘Study in India’ programme of the Ministry of Human Resource Development is being promoted by the government to increase the number of overseas students arriving in India to about 200,000 by the year 2020.
This plan, however, targets only students from SAARC countries. In addition to students from SAARC nations, the Commerce Ministry is also keen to get students from developed nations such as USA and EU to India to pursue their studies.
A senior official was quoted by the DNA as saying that the government was trying to promote India as a study destination with a two-phased approach. One was to encourage more students from SAARC bloc to pursue conventional degree level courses and the other was to persuade students from the West to come to India to pursue short-term courses in subjects that are special to India such as early Indian culture, Indian languages and Yoga.
AIU has informed all universities falling under it to convey to students about these kinds of programs, which will convince more international students to come to India.
The official added that many Chinese students have recently come to Delhi University to do courses in Sanskrit and Hindi. The latest report of the AIU revealed that India attracts only 0.6 percent of foreign students who study abroad.
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