MNS agitation wrong: Pawar

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Pune, Jul 18 (UNI) Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar today said the agitation launched by Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) against the various private educational institutes here for not giving priority to local students, was completely 'wrong' and could create serious problems for employment and growth of the city.

Speaking to the reporters here this evening, Mr Pawar said around four lakh students are studying in the city, out of which around 1,37,000 are from outside the state and 20,000 from foreign countries. They bring in revenue of around Rs 2,500 crore annually that can be utilised to generate employment and infrastructure in the city.

He said many developing countries are trying to attract Indian students by launching various schemes. Pune is emerging as an industrial hub because of the availability of highly skilled manpower.

Mr Pawar, who himself runs educational institutes in his home town Baramati, said even the constitution says that local students should be given priority into the government-run educational institutes only, but not in the private educational institutes.

Asked whether the UPA Government will win the confidence vote on July 22, the minister said ''we will prove the majority in Parliament.'' Mr Pawar refuted the Opposition's demand that the state government should declare drought due to lull in monsoon, saying that there are certain guidelines to do so and his ministry is studying the same.

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