This quote has been

This quote has been ascribed to a minister of UPA-II He is not the HRD Minister But when has that prevented our ministers from indulging in one-upmanship and shooting their mouths off to the mediawithout bringing their concerns before Cabinet The comment is in reaction to HRD Minister Kapil Sibals 100-day plan for reforming educationincluding allowing foreign universities entry I will leave the quoted minister unnamedsince ministers are prone to (a)deny they ever said it(b)state they have been misquoted(c)claim they have been quoted out of context Howeverthis minister claims credit for reforms initiated by the Congress government in 1991 Note that those were days when industry was liberalizedlicensing ended and domestic industry was exposed to foreign competition Our own industry was in bad shape then Barring protectionist industry (the Bombay Club)no one claimed it wasnt practical to invite foreign competition Insteadit was argued that infant industry protection meant infants never became adults The only way to ensure maturity and improve industrys shapeso to speakwas to expose it to competition Without survival of the fittestsurvival of the fattest would continue Indian industry has now become much more competitiveby any criteria So why cant the competition-driving-efficiency hypothesis drive education too There is a minor matter of ministers lacking courage of conviction and running with the hares and hunting with the houndsdepending on which way the wind is blowing But that apartit is practical for Indian students to head off to foreign shores for quality education (and sometimes get beaten up there) It is practical for Indian educational institutions to set up shop in the Middle East and East Asia It is practical for relatively low-quality foreign universities to function in Indiausing a grey area of law But it is not practical to allow good-quality foreign universities in India It is also practical for human capital flight to take place overseas from good faculty Surethere is a Pandoras box of reforms required in educationespecially higher education We need to free up salary and fee-fixationensuring subsidies reach poor students directly We need to allow education to become profit-makinginstead of underhand proliferation of capitation fees But its an odd level playing field argument that we cant open up until we do all that For all the latest Opinion News download Indian Express App More Related News “Parker” and “The Campaign and Colombiana”.said. one-time parking charges and road restoration charges has increased. The best way to do it could well be to “think that it’s not India”. When the protesters refused to budge.

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