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As part of the Cabinet reshuffle, Dharmendra Pradhan has been appointed as the new Union Education Minister. The cabinet reshuffle has been the first in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's second term from May 2019. He has been allotted the portfolio of Education and Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Minister.
Mr. Pradhan has been the Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas since PM Modi took office in 2014. He represents Deogarh in Odisha in Lok Sabha. He has replaced Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' who resigned on 7th June 2021, citing health reasons. Mr. Pokhriyal took charge as the Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister (now Education Minister) in May 2019.
Dharmendra Pradhan will come into a ministry that must work on getting the education system on the tracker which has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Decisions on many national-level entrance exams such as NEET 2021 and various others pending. Students appearing in the respective entrance exams have been anxious and are looking forward to a decision on the same. Mr. Pradhan will also pick up where Mr. Pokhriyal left off with the implementation of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.
The Ministry of Education is divided into two departments such as Department of School Education and Literacy and the Department of Higher Education. The Department of School Education and Literacy is responsible for primary, secondary, and higher secondary education, adult education, and literacy, whereas the Department of Higher Education is responsible for university-level education, technical education, scholarships, and other related activities.