The Congress Monday accused the Modi government of "punishing" lakhs of economically weaker students by putting "obstacles" in the eligibility criteria to avail education loans for pursuing professional or technical courses.
The Congress's attack came after a media report claimed that the pool of eligible institutions for which students can take education loans to pursue professional or technical courses got smaller.
The report, citing the latest set of guidelines issued by the Union HRD Ministry, said the eligibility for the model educational loan scheme of the Indian Banks' Association is restricted to students enrolling for professional and technical courses in NAAC-accredited institutions of national importance and centrally-funded technical institutions.
"BJP government punishes lakhs of economically weaker students by putting obstacles in eligibility criteria to avail education loans for pursuing Professional/Technical courses!" Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala tweeted, tagging the report.
"Education loans restricted to only 1,056 institutions. Education loans be routed only via Vidya Laxmi portal," he said.
The BJP government has virtually killed the education loan scheme for professional or technical courses and jeopardised the future of the youth, Surjewala said.
"Lack of awareness of new norms mean few apply for education loans. Banks approved only 42,700 out of 1.44 lakh applications in the past four years," he said.