Who will Lick the Wounds?

Orginally written in April 2006.

Disclaimer: I am not against the SC/ST/OBCs. I am against the reservations. The reservation is responsible for making them stand out as a different cast from the rest (even now). This review is a reflection of my own personal thoughts and it is not meant to hurt the sentiments of anyone.

Before we go any further, let’s take a look at a few scenarios:

Sports: The newspaper headline screams out: 40% Reservation for SC/ST/OBCs . The article elaborates that the sports ministry has decided that the OBC candidates have to run only 240 mts instead of 400 mts in Olympics. The sports ministry justifies that this is the only way we can bring in more such people to play sports and represent our country. So they are planning to meet and speak with the Olympics authorities to convince them that this is important for India’s progress!

Cricket, hockey, and other sports teams will be revamped to accommodate 49% reservation. Rules will be changed for these reserved category sportsmen. The future? These teams will cease to exist— ’Indian Cricket team will be a matter of history.

Heaven: Up in the heavens, Gods are having a meeting. Narada Muni tells them what had been happening in the earth. That also includes some update about the proposal for reservation for the OBCs in IITs and IIMs. Brahma, the creator wonders, ’’Now, what are they? I remember that we created human brings!’’

Narada explains the concept to him and to the other Gods. The Gods decide that they also have to do something to help the SC/ST/OBCs. Shivji’s wife, Parvatiji suggests, ’’Why don’t we reduce the pains of the SC/ST/OBC women? Instead of carrying the child in their womb for 9 months, they should do so only for 5.5 months.

Glamour world: The leading producers and directors of Bollywood are in a state of panic! The new rule states that out of every 2 films they make, one should have an all SC/ST/OBC cast and crew members. Karan Johar is said to have placed an ad in the paper, internet, and social media for such a crew and he is still waiting for the right combinations for the last 5 years.

The ad world is equally shaken. 49% of the models walking the ramp should be SC/ST/OBC, same goes for the fashion designers and ad photographers.

Pilots: The politicians are in a state of panic. A new rule has been passed saying that there should be a special squad of pilots consisting only of BCs who have come in through the reservation catergory. These pilots have been granted the title after flying half the time required to become a licensed pilot.

The politicians who opened their HUGE mouths without thinking about the future of India, are now refusing to be flown by these pilots.

Theatres, restaurants, theme parks: They are all half full (or is it half empty?) because of the almost 50% reservation for the SC/ST/OBCs. After filling up half the seats, the guard at the restaurants allow people inside only if they show the identity card to prove that they are SC/ST/OBCs. The same happens at the theatres and the theme parks.

STOP IT! Is this the Future of India?

Arjun Singh says the Central government will raise education reservations of the ST/SC/OBCs to 49.5 per cent in India’s premier institutions. Currently students belonging to SCs and STs already enjoy 22.5 % quota. The government is proposing to bring OBCs under the quota regime by giving them 27 % reservations.

In simple mathematics, this means that out of 100 students in one such institute, about 50 students will belong to the ST/SC/OBC. Do these 50 students really deserve to belong here? Probably Arjun Singh may scream a big No in his mind, but outside he grins and justifies his decision. Will this help the backward classes prosper? Or will this lead to more controversy and more diversity.

General

It is but the truth that one and all, irrespective of caste, creed, color, or language should get the access to good institutions for education, but this is not the way to go about it! Foisting reservations on IITs and IIMs that have over the years built up a reputation of excellence is unfair. The government must go beyond the reservations rant and look for innovative, right, and correct ways of providing equity to such groups. Else, it will destroy not only the reputation of these institutions, but also of our country

Now, India is gaining reputation and is poised to emerge as a powerhouse of academic talent. At this stage, such a decision by a bunch of fools would take India backward by half a century and then it would take another century to reach where we have reached now. This is the time when we have to seriously think and scale down the existing reservations not only in educational institutions, but also in all areas of function, rather than increase them.

Conclusion: I, as an educated Indian, feel that the problem should be tackled at a grass-root level and for the want of tackling the problem. First and foremost make education till class 12 free, if not for all, atleast for the SC/ST/OBC. After this, higher education should be performance based.

Lowering the standards of institutions is not the answer to the upliftment of the downtrodden. It never was and never will be. But the question here is are SC/ST/OBC actually downtrodden? They definitely are not! It is only in the mind set of the politicians when they try to scheme of getting a bigger vote bank!

The other societies have irradiated the caste system over time because they wanted to do it. The Indian politicians have made an this issue and have kept it alive instead of allowing the cast system to die a natural death. Hence I strongly feel that even the reservations for the jobs should be taken away. There should be no reservations — for SC, ST, OBC, or women! It is sheer hypocrisy to create a barrier and then say that it is done so that the barriers can be removed.

Even now, there is a shortage of trained manpower, good teachers, and doctors in India. With the boom in the IT sector, there will be a shortage of good and knowledgeable engineers within a few years. With these reservations, China will soon overtake us in the IT software sector too and we will be left far behind. I wonder what the politicians have to say about it? Will they be in a position to help the industry, the economy, and in short the MESS they have created? Will they help India lick the wounds?

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