Monday, April 10, 2006

Mandal II - Some random thoughts

This is an article written by Abhishek, one of my friend. I felt this article to be more inclined to my idea's and "Voice Against Reservations" Motto. So thought about including in this blog :

I guess the hot news now is the govt.'s proposed
reservation bill seeking to add 27% reservation for
OBCs which would lead to the total reservation coming
to nearly 50%.

Now with all due respect to any SCs/STs/OBCs etc. etc.
blah blah out there, in my opinion this is simply
bulls**t! Why don't they increase reservations to 100%
while they're at it? Why do it piece by piece when
they're gonna reach 100% anyway?

I'll tell you why - it's because if this govt.
increases reservations to 100% (and don't think for
one moment it can't), then forthcoming govts. will not
know what to do to get more votes. After all, it's all
about cheap and petty vote-bank politics, nothing
else. All this talk about affirmative action is simply
an eyewash to fool people.

How else do you explain the fact that while all
parties in the parliament can *never* agree on any
issue and lakhs are spent on the tables and chairs
broken everyday in protests by one party or the other,
on this one issue there were *NO* objections by

Obviously, because no party wants to lose the votes of
the minorities. It's a simple case of "you scratch my
back, and I'll scratch yours".

All I can say is that I'm saddened, bemused and
sickened all at the same time. When merit takes a
back-seat to politics, then India for sure is being
pushed down the abyss of destruction.

'India Shining' is the govt.'s cry. What rubbish! The
shine, if ever there was any, has fast been replaced
by the rust and degradation of avarice and greed.

India is a name to be reckoned with in the Silicon
Valley and all over the world solely due to the best
and brightest of our minds having contributed so much
to the industry. And after years of 'brain drain'
which saw us lose our best minds to the US and others,
there was some amount of 'reverse brain drain'
happening which saw those people return to their
motherland and contribute to the institutions here
that made them what they are today.

But now where is the incentive for any young and
talented person, especially of the General category,
to stay here anymore? No appreciation for hard work or
merit and fighting day after day with literally
thousands and millions for a few seats here and there
in educational institutions. I have myself given exams
where we were all competing like crazy for maybe 5 or
10 seats that were open to us out of the total. Won't
people go crazy in this situation after a while? It
pains me to say it 'cos I love my country, but who
wants to stay in such a place for long?

Even the few available seats are filled by people
through back-door means like bribery, nepotism etc.
What is a normal, average to above-average student
from a poor or middle-class background to do if he
belongs to the General category? If he can't afford to
go abroad and can't get a seat to study here, where
does he go? No wonder we have so many highly qualified
people working as chaprasis and what not. What a

I have seen with my own eyes my very own classmate
from school walking into IIT Kanpur and joining the
Computer Science BTech course (you all know only top
rankers in JEE get it) just because he was an SC or an
ST. I'm not sure which as I never asked him. In fact,
before he got into IIT, all through school I never
even knew he was an SC/ST. And why should I? I never
treated him any differently from the others. We were
all alike and there was no discrimination. In fact,
his family was distinctly in the higher economic
bracket as his father was a highly paid executive.

Now can someone tell me why this guy needed a seat
reserved for him? Was he discriminated against? Not
that I could tell. Was he poor? No way! Then how come
he got a seat that should have gone to some other
deserving candidate? Don't get me wrong, he probably
did have enough brains to get into some other course
at IIT but certainly not enough to get into the Comp.
Sc. course.

Today's paper says that 60% of IIT students whose
performance is reviewed and who're thrown out (yes! it
does happen in IIT too! Not everyone who gets in is a
genius, mugging can and often does suffice) are
SCs/STs. The tragedy being that deserving candidates
are turned away and such students are allowed in only
for them to be thrown out and seats remaining vacant
at the end! After all, even IIT doesn't want its
placement figures ruined. So better remove beforehand
those students who're useless.

Question - why did they allow those supposedly useless
people to get in in the first place?

This is what happens when you have reservations to the
tune of 50% and more. First it was govt.-aided
educational institutions, soon it might be in private
institutions, schools and even companies (they tried
this recently) too.

Now tell me - if you were told that you would have an
assured seat in school (do you know how tough school
admissions are nowadays?), then in college, then for
PG, then have an assured job - would you study hard?
Where is the incentive? Everything's free so why sweat
it out, right?

Let me clarify one major point here - I am *not at
all* against SCs/STs/OBCs etc. and I'm not totally
against reservation. But it should be MERIT cum MEANS
*ONLY*. If someone's got talent but is from a poor
background and can't pay for his education, by all
means it should be subsidised for him, whichever
caste/creed etc. he belongs to. But there should be
*no blanket reservations* for anybody who brandishes a
caste certificate saying he's an SC or an ST or

People laugh and joke about one-room 'colleges' and
'universities' all over India giving degrees in any
and all subjects under the sun. But has anyone thought
of why they've mushroomed and how come they thrive?
It's because as a society we Indians are driven
towards gaining knowledge as a means to improve our
status in life. But if a person even with percentage
marks in the high 90s can't get a college seat in the
good universities like DU etc. (some courses, even
97-98 is not enough!), where will he go? And what of
the 50 and 60 percenters?

Every year the number of school students committing
suicides increases. It's obvious isn't it? They feel
that with their 'ordinary' marks they'll never make it
to any decent college and as they've ruined their
lives anyway, why not end it all. It makes me so sad
to read such news items - each one is a potential gem
lost to the country forever. And why? Because there
aren't enough seats for them. Why? Because of
reservations, of course.

The worst part is, no govt. will have the guts to
decrease reservations, ever. So like I said earlier,
with every govt. the ratio will increase till it
touches 100%.

My final opinion? First, for all prospective parents -
get a fake caste certificate made ASAP for your kid!
He'll appreciate it a lot when he grows up and needs
to go to college or during a job interview!

Second, I wish reservation touches 100% soon, for then
the only way out will be to start reserving seats for
us General category students. So govt., do it quick!

Already there's gonna be a massive shortage of trained
manpower and teachers in India in the IT sector within
a few years. For all it's flaws, China will soon
overtake us in the IT software sector too and we'll be
left licking our wounds yet again.

Great. When Manmohan Singh, an academic himself can
take such stupid decisions, what hope is there from
the rest?

So I ask you all, if you support this cause, then at
the very least raise your voice against this madness.
Write letters to the newspapers or mail them to let
them know how you, the youth and future of this
country, feel. Don't just sit back and think that
someone else will fight your battles for you. And yes,
it does affect you, whether directly or indirectly.

We can make a difference. Let us all shout together so
that the govt.'s foundations shake and totter. let
them know that enough is enough!

I know this was a loooong rant from my side but it was
just something I had to get off my chest. It may be
incoherent at times and not make total sense to you,
but if you read even part of it, you'd have surely got
an idea of what I was talking about. So do let me know
what *you* feel about it all? Do you think I'm right
about something or wrong about something else? What's
*your* opinion?

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