THE New Education Policy has correctly focused on the core of the educational malaise the country is suffering from: A discriminatory system with one system for the elite and another for the masses; and a lack of resources for investment in the education sector. Making education compulsory for all at any level is meaningless if that education is outdated and irrelevant to the modern world. The education is also of little use if it does not provide a level playing field in the job market. So it is good to see the government focusing on having one education system for the public and private sectors. A total revision of the curricula is also necessary but a fresh mindset is required to make truly academic curricula, especially in the social sciences. Unfortunately, the new policy does not envisage a major shift in resources towards education, with only a 7 percent budgetary allocation envisaged by 2015. This is totally inadequate. Even more glaring is the lack of focus on raising the standard and emoluments for teachers so that this profession becomes one of choice rather than a last resort occupation. A professional teaching cadre has to be developed. Unless we establish the dignity of the teaching profession, no amount of investment in brick and mortar will help us overcome the education deficit. A major cause for concern in the NEP is the bringing in of the Interior Ministry into the realm of education. By placing madrassahs under the Interior Ministry, we will further push them out of the educational mainstream. This is an untenable posture and one is totally at a loss to understand why this discriminatory treatment is being meted out to the madrassahs, which by and large cater to the already marginalized segments of the population. The correct approach would have been to bring the madrassahs, like religious schools across the world, into the mainstream of the educational system, with the religious part of the examinations being conducted by the relevant religious boards. If we are going to have one educational system for all, the religious schools must also be brought into this ambit. Without this, we cannot rid ourselves of the debilitating cost of an illiterate nation.