Monday, August 25, 2008

Young, meritorious ,middle-class & want to be an IITian? Get out of India.

The reservation juggernaut in IITs seems to roll on continuously. The outcome of the recent meeting of the IIT directors in Kharagpur yesterday was to lower by 50% the cut-off marks for entry of reserved category students through all India Joint Entrance Examination. The idea ostensibly is to fill up the reserved category seats in the IIT.

But then merit? Who cares!

Read this with another recent incident in IIT Delhi, where 3 students admitted under the reserved category were allowed to continue their studies in spite of the fact that these students failed to perform in the engineering examinations. Mind you, engineering is a subject, where it is difficult to fail unless one is a complete duffer or a conspicuous consumer of mind-altering drugs . Presumably, the IIT director succumbed to the dictates of the HRD ministry led by a self-appointed social-reformer , a senile minister , whose only avenue for such reforms is corruption of carefully nurtured national institutions (like the IITs) through large-scale reservations .

What about a national policy for quality primary education for all & a policy for recruiting thousands of faculty to meet that demand to enable merit to come up across the length & breadth of the country? Where is the cess in income tax for primary education going to ? Who knows ? Maybe , its going to the subsidy of LPG or petrol or waiver of farmers’ loans or for buying MPs of other parties.

A few weeks back, the IIT directors had agreed to reservations in all categories (totalling 50%) , in all streams of engineering for faculty aspirants too. Although the reservation has been limited to the entry level ; for sure , the cut-off marks for selection of such faculty would have been reduced too.

One would have thought that the direction of social reform should be abolition of caste & not reservation of caste. This is indeed a warped way of thinking.

The directors of IIT, by nature of their appointment , are answerable only to the ministry . Gone are the days when IITs could be proud of personalities like Prof. Gyan Ghosh (first director of IIT-KGP, which was modelled after MIT) or Prof. Indiresan of IIT Madras , who had a mind of their own and took their job of institution-building seriously.

The present lot of Directors by the very nature of their pro-reservation actions are displaying their weak-kneed personalities and complete disregard for upholding the meritorious character of the IITs. With poor quality of students & faculty to dominate the population in IIT shortly; IITs are set for a rapid decline in standards.

Perhaps this is an eventuality that was waiting to come . For long, IITs have remained an exotic island of merit, known world over for their students & aspired by every educated middle class family having kids with above-average intelligence. Surrounded by institutions of average calibre , jealous non-performers, social-reform activists with the IQ of morons & politicians who pimp the prostitutions of poverty & misery ; it was inevitable that the walls of IIT will crumble under pressure. And what better way to do that than by putting agents of “social change” in the positions of Directors.

So, if you are a young student aspiring to study engineering and have merit with money ; do not waste your time in this country. Apply for the best in the world of universities in USA, Europe & even in China ; take a loan in case you are from a middle class background & short of funds ;get a scholarship and MOVE. Believe me, your pain today will be your gain in the future. The Grade-A university in a country which respects merit is meant for you.

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