EDUCATION AND CULTURE
The beginning of technical education in the Bombay Province was made by an engineering class in Bombay. The necessity of promoting technical education was pointed out in 1880 by the Indian Famine Commission. In 1888, the V. J. Technical Institute. Bombay. was founded chiefly with the help of generous endowments with the object of imparting instruction in the principles of science and arts and their application to industrial and other purposes. The Atkinson-Dawson Committee Report of 1912 felt the need of apprenticeship to the technically-trained personnel in the province of Bombay and recommended suitable centres or classes in the regional language for textile jobbers or mistris and also suggested that the minor technical centres should be placed under one Central Technical Institution The Committee of Direction for Technical Education was constituted by the then Government of Bombay in 1913. The control of technical and industrial education in the province was vested in this committee. The Industrial Commission of 1918 felt the need of providing educational institutions of a more advanced character and the establishment of colleges of very high grade under the direct control of the Central Government. With a view to extending widely technical
education and industrial training, the then Government of Bombay appointed a Committee in 1921. The Committee recommended the establishment of part-time courses for apprentices under the Government Apprenticeship Scheme and the formation of a Joint Directorate of Technical Education. The Abbott and Wood Report of 1936 gave a good lead to the educationists in devising a new educational policy by suggesting that the provision of technical and vocational education alone would lead to the rapid development of industries. Experiments were also conducted regarding the possibility of imparting elementary education through a basic craft or purposeful activity. The second world war created an urgent demand for technical personnel and the Central Government appointed a Technical Training Enquiry Committee in 1940. In 1948, the then Government of Bombay set up the Department of Technical Education. The technical education at all levels in the State was entrusted to it. It looks after technical education imparted by such institutions as engineering colleges, polytechnics, industrial schools and technical high schools. Postgraduate courses and research are also being undertaken at some institutes. This department until August 1963 was also conducting examinations for diploma and certificate courses offered by the polytechnics and some of the technical institutions in the State. Apart from the above the department also looks after the training schemes sponsored by the Government of India such as Craftsman Training Scheme, Apprenticeship Training Scheme and Evening Classes
for industrial workers.
All technical and industrial training institutes and courses leading up to diploma standard excluding those coming under the jurisdiction of the University are controlled by the Department of Technical Education, Bombay. The Government have appointed a State Council of Technical Education which advises and makes recommendations in respect of technical and industrial institutions and courses leading up to the diploma standard. The State Council for Training in Vocational Trades carries out the policies of the National Council with regard to the award of National Trade Certificates in engineering, building and leather trades and other similar trades. The Deputy Director of Technical Education, Pune, responsible to the Director of Technical Education, Maharashtra State, Bombay, looks after the activities of the department in the district. It may be noted that the Government High School at Ahmadnagar was converted into a Technical High School from June 1955 for providing facilities for technical education.
Apart from the degree and diploma courses there are crafts and needle crafts institutions. The courses conducted by them are approved
by the Board of Technical Examination of Maharashtra State and. certificates are awarded by the Board. Moreover there are courses in arts, crafts and needle crafts, tailoring, embroidery and fancy work, craft teachers' courses in tailoring, needle-work, wood-work, hand spinning and weaving, cardboard, leather, cane and bamboo work. etc., approved by the Board. The total number of such crafts and needle crafts institutions in the State was 309 during 1966-67. In the same year in Ahmadnagar district there were seven such institutions, six situated at Ahmadnagar and one at Sangamner. The duration of courses run by them is one to two years. The intake capacity of all these institutes was 245 in 1966-67.
There was one handloom weaving institute run by a non-Government agency which had an intake capacity of 20 in 1966-67.
Training of skilled workers required for various industries is offered at the Government Industrial Training Institute. The aim of this type of training is to equip the trainees as skilled artisans for suitable industrial employment. The other type of training is mainly 'vocational' where training is offered in cottage and small-scale industries extending over a period not exceeding twelve months with a view to preparing the trainees for gainful employment. There are two Industrial Training Institutions in Ahmadnagar district which accommodated 584 students in 1967-68. They provide courses useful to carpenter, wireman, mechanic, electrician, pattern-maker, etc. The duration of the course is from one to two years ranging according to the nature of the trade. The institutions are run by the Government.
Technical high schools are essentially secondary schools with a technical bias. Their aim is not to train students specially for entering into wage-earning occupations but to give them a broad-based training in basic engineering workshop courses without neglecting the academic subjects. The course is spread over a period of four years from Standards VIII to XI and students are prepared for the S. S. C. examination with a technical bias. In Ahmadnagar there were three technical high schools in 1966-67 with an intake capacity of 225. Of these, two schools in Ahmadnagar taluka were run by the Government and a private body, respectively whereas one school in Pathardi taluka was managed by a private body.
The aim of the basic training and related instruction centres is to acquaint the students with the basic principles behind the working system of tools and machinery. There is one centre in Ahmadnagar which had an intake capacity of B.T.C. 50 and R.I.C. 100 in 1967-68. The duration of this training is for twelve months except for Tool and Dye making course which is of four years' duration. In the case of this course the basic training is for two years. Under the technical
and vocational training scheme a sum of Rs. 4.78 lakhs was spent in. 1967-68. The benefits of the scheme were derived by 130 students.