Indian Students Flee For Foreign Universities Post Pandemic

by GoNews Desk 2 years ago Views 3121

india Pandmeic Higher Education Students Abroad Hi
The pandemic seems to have highlighted systemic issues plaguing the country, with a historic record number of students flying abroad to seek higher education, and a report by Oxfam highlighting the dire conditions of economic inequality.

On one hand, the lack of educational infrastructure and facilities has led to more than 11.33 lakh (11,33,749) students going abroad for higher education in 2021. In 2020, this number stood at 2,61,406, although this relatively lower figure can be attributed to worldwide restrictions on travel which led to many students in foreign universities studying through distance mode. But in 2019, this number was 5,88,931, an increase over 2018’s 5,20,342.

This means that the number of students going abroad for higher education doubled during the pandemic as compared to the year before it, i.e., 2019. One of the main drivers for this trend has online registration for college courses, which has reduced costs and made it easier for students to get visas to go abroad.

Sumit Jain, the founder and CEO of Yokit, a platform that helps students study abroad, said that the number of queries on the app for studying abroad doubled from 5 lakh in 2019 to 10 lakh in 2021.

Quality Higher Education Only Available Abroad, For Those Who Can Pay?


The chart clearly shows that the number of students going abroad for higher education has been steadily increasing over the past 5 years. GoNews reported that Indian students were spending more for their education abroad than the government was spending on higher education domestically.

A report by consulting firm Red Seer titled “Higher Education Abroad” has projected that by 2024 there will be over 18 lakh Indian students abroad. The same report says that the total expenditure by these students abroad will be $85 billion, which comes to nearly  ₹89 lakh per student. By contrast, the government itself spends a little over  ₹10,000 per student enrolled in higher education in the country.

With rapid growth of the ed-tech sector, privatization, and increased trend of students seeking higher education abroad, it seems like the practice of higher education being sought abroad by students whose families can pay for it has become the norm.

Oxfam Report ‘Inequality Kills’ Highlights Rising Inequalities During Pandemic

A new report recently released by the NGO Oxfam has brought the stark inequalities of India to light, and has advocated for raising tax on billionaires and investing that amount into welfare schemes.

As the pandemic ravaged the economy and livelihoods in the country, the report says that the number of billionaires grew from 102 to 142. Rural unemployment was at a high of 15% during May 2021 and the levels of food insecurity were also peaking, and yet this was the same time during which India had more billionaires than France, Sweden, and Switzerland.

According to the report, the wealth of billionaires grew from ₹23.14 lakh crore ($313 billion) to ₹53.16 lakh crore ($719 billion) in the period between March 2020 and November 2021. During the same period, 4.6 crore Indians were pushed into poverty. The report relies on data by the United Nations on global poverty which say that India’s increase in pverty during the pandemic was 50% of the increase in poverty levels seen on a global scale.

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