My school textbooks taught me about India as a welfare state interested in promoting equality and social well-being among its citizen. However, the central government’s new principle has transformed it into a machinery that maximises the corporate profit at the cost of betrayal of the masses. This policy has made reflections in different sectors, the most disastrous one being the educational sector.
Liberal economy and globalization have saved the country once from bankruptcy and it also played a central role in improving the standards of living of Indian middle class for the last three decades. These capitalist sponsored advances have knowingly ignored the well-being of lower sections of the society including adivasis and dalits as these sections were not able to contribute in any means to the maximisation of corporate profit. They neither had the purchasing power nor the expertise to work for corporates. This has accentuated the illiteracy and malnourishment in India.
Standards of higher education in India is also not any different. Unlike many foreign countries, only very few Indian universities have the facilities for research and innovation. IITs, NITs and IISERs are a few of them, with the basic aim of cutting edge research. Recent nature index also shows the same with lion share of the research publications from these institutions and rest of the country contributing only very little. Institutes like IITs and IISERs also have different graduate programmes with the aim of producing researchers and entrepreneurs for the country
Recent decision of the MHRD to hike the fees for these programmes has once again made it clear that the paradigm of this government is to betray the masses and to serve the profit hungry corporates. One cannot view the policy of the government to increase the fees and to provide interest free loans to the students without the above scepticism. A debt trapped student from IIT or IISER by the end of his\her course will be obliged to pay back the amount forcing him\her to be the slaves of corporates, working for them 12-19 hours per day instead of utilising their expertise and hard word for higher studies in a manner that benefits the country. High quality human resource flows to the corporates at a lower expenditure for them.
Yes, the government has again betrayed the countrymen for the benefit Ambanis and Adanis.
Akshai J is a graduate student in biology