To give a major push to improve the infrastructure at higher education institutions across the country, Higher Education Funding Agency (HEFA) – an initiative of the Government of India, would make INR 1 lakh crore available to institutions over the next four years, Union Human Resource Development Minister Prakash Javadekar said on Monday.
“The availability of funds would be implemented under the Centre’s goal to plug infrastructural holes and improve systems in the higher education sector in next 4 years,” Javadekar said.
“This is implemented under the initiative of ‘Revitalising Infrastructure & Systems in Education (RISE)’ by 2022,” he added.
The Narendra Modi government had announced the establishment of HEFA in the 2016-17 Union Budget.
“’HEFA would make these funds available to institutions as interest-free loans. It has been recognised as a non-banking financial institution (NBFC) by the Reserve Bank of India,” he added.
The vision of HEFA is to enable India’s premier educational institutions to excel and reach the top in global rankings by financing building world-class infrastructure particularly R&D Infrastructure.
“We have decided to set up a Higher Education Financing Agency (HEFA) with an initial capital base of INR 2,000 crores. The HEFA will be a not-for-profit organisation that will leverage funds from the market and supplements them with donations and CSR funds,” Union Minister Arun Jaitley had said while presenting Union Budget 2016-17.
“These funds will be used to finance improvement in infrastructure in our top institutions and will be serviced through internal accruals,” he had said.
The prime mission of HEFA is to provide timely finance at low-interest rates for capital assets creation in India’s higher education institutions and supplement it with grants by channelizing CSR funds from the corporate and donations from others.