It is a paradox that when the first stage of the coveted national goal of Universalization of Elementary Education (UEE) is almost achieved (The Net Enrolment Ratio in the primary stage of elementary education was 99.6% as per the Government’s DISE data for the year 2010-11), the major stakeholders of education in our country feel that elementary education in India is in a deep crisis. Elementary Education in India: Policy Shifts, Issues and Challenges explicates the socio-political dynamics in post-Independent India that have led to the present state of elementary education in the country. It has been argued in this volume that the leaders and thinkers involved in the freedom struggle were guided by values such as egalitarianism, equality of opportunity, and social justice, and had envisioned elementary education as a means to transform Indian society according to these values. However, in post-Independent India, the thinking of the leaders of our country demonstrates a tension between education’s role in economic development and its role in bringing about social transformation in the country. Right after the attainment of freedom, political leaders and bureaucrats accorded greater importance to higher and technical education over elementary education as they thought that the former will play a key role in the modernization and economic development of the country whereas the latter was viewed as an act of welfare only.