A recent news item of students who have secured more than 95% in their Board exams, not getting admission in ‘good’ colleges has set me thinking. A particular college even had a cut-off of 100% - just what is ‘cut-off at 100%’?
This and some other colleges sound like Dronacharya’s (of Mahabharata) school. Dronacharya used to teach only children of kings, the family of Bhishma to be precise. When an equally qualified, if not more, pupil like Eklavya tried to take ‘admission’ in Drona’s school, he was denied admission, however, fees was extracted out of him. Nobody questioned the faulty education system and the injustice meted out to a deserving student, by a well-known ‘head of an institution’, rather, an elitist institution. This was similar to rejecting a deserving student because the son(s) of the trustees or the governing body feel insecure of other students’ capabilities or the head of the institution’s loyalties lying elsewhere. Such biases are seen even today, except that the bosses have changed, and at times this is not done so openly.
Further down, when a qualified pupil, like Karna tried to appear for exams in what seemed to be an ‘open-exam’, he was disqualified from the same on the grounds of unknown caste of birth or lower caste to be precise. This is similar to someone who is inherently intelligent and qualified, but cannot produce his domicile certificate or other such credentials! This is exactly why many students leave their own states and go to other states or some deserving students decided to leave the country due to such inherent impediments in our Education system, like reservations for example.
How long will deserving students be deprived of good institutions? Are students who secure anything above 80% not supposed to be good in studies? Are the above-average students now becoming mediocre students, as certified by a few ‘academics’? Are students who get 95% any less better than those who secure 98%? Just who decides such ‘cut-offs’ and who authorizes such people to occupy such seats of learning, who sow the seeds of discord and end up creating an education based caste-system?
Dronacharya himself jumped his caste by fighting the war of Kurkshetra, which was the domain of Kshatriyas, even though he was a Brahmin. But he deprived Eklavya and Karna on grounds of not-deserving of education for similar reasons, which were unethical. Dronacharya got away with such petty acts, but why are we letting the modern-day Drona’s get away with such academic bias? Why are we allowing them to create a rift between all deserving students, by making some feel more gifted than the others? The modern day Drona’s are creating new set of haves and have-nots amongst the academic-haves.
It would be a service done to the nation, if the Education Minister takes firm steps than just laughing the matter away. We know he would not get admission if he had to secure one today, but why not take steps to stop such a menace unleashed by the modern-day Drona’s? Stop them before they create a new unviable educational eco-system, where many deserving students will be made to perish.