EDUCATION TRIBUNE Tuesday, December 26, 2000, Chandigarh, India
  Making education fundamental right
Brig M.P. Singh
N the late nineteenth and the early twentieth centuries, it came to be accepted that education ought to be the responsibility of the state. Under the influence of laissez faire, both the UK and the USA allowed their respective governments to take up education as a state matter. In 1870, the British Parliament passed an Elementary Education Act which permitted a dual system of voluntary and local authority schools in the UK.

IIMs rule the roost
By P.K. Vasudeva
ASPIRANTS for entry to Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) have appeared for the entrance test Common Admission Test (CAT) in December. Thousands appear to get admission in the IIMs and other prestigious institutes/B-schools which admit MBA students through CAT like Management Development Institute (MDI), Gurgaon, Business School, Panjab University and so on, because the upper crusts of global managers are backed to perfection in these institutes and get placements in the MNCs at high salaries and perquisites.

From Pervin Malhotra




Making education fundamental right
Brig M.P. Singh

IN the late nineteenth and the early twentieth centuries, it came to be accepted that education ought to be the responsibility of the state. Under the influence of laissez faire, both the UK and the USA allowed their respective governments to take up education as a state matter. In 1870, the British Parliament passed an Elementary Education Act which permitted a dual system of voluntary and local authority schools in the UK. It was left to the school boards, as the first education authorities were called, to decide whether to make elementary education compulsory. In 1880, it was made compulsory throughout England and Wales, and in 1891 fees were abolished.

This did not happen in India. Thomas Macaulay (1835) and Charles Wood (1854) talked of big issues, such as, creation of departments of education in provinces, and funding of Presidency Universities of Bombay, Calcutta and Madras by they evaded the issue of making education compulsory at the state level. Consequently, education became top heavy, leading to rapid expansion of college education, but school education suffered.

Elementary education was starved and under-nourished and secondary education too, suffered from proper supervision. Elementary education was imparted in private institutions which served as “coaching institutions rather than places of learning”. No effort was made to make elementary education compulsory. The politically minded native Indians, who came to regard education as a national need, were critical of the British Government’s education policy, as it lacked substantial educational advancement of the India masses, who were not being prepared for life.

After Independence it has been increasingly realised that if education is to make a dent on the masses, it should be made compulsory up to a particular level and for that government support is mendatory. The architects of the Indian Constitution debated the issue of making basic education a fundamental right, but thought it wise to make it a directive principle in preference to a fundamental right.

It still continues to be a directive principle. The erstwhile Prime Minister, Mr Deve Gowda, had taken upon himself the task of introducing a Bill in Parliament, for amending the Constitution to make it a fundamental right. But no change could materialise. Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee’s Government too is keen to make education a fundamental right but has not succeeded so far. It needs to be explained as to what is coming in the way of education becoming a fundamental right.

In India, where once only a small proportion of the community entered into formal education, today much larger numbers do, and, therefore, universal primary education alone is posing itself as a big national problem. Normally between 5 and 7 per cent of the Gross National Product may be spent of formal education. This percentage is increasing more rapidly than many other parts of expenditures. Even though education is viewed as an investment for the future, planners are unable to earmark matching money resources for the fear of chocking other industrial ventures of national importance.

Since Independence, there has been a rapid acceleration in the rate of growth of demand for educational services at all levels. A major cause of the rise in the demand for education is the increase in the size of the child population. Something like 25 per cent of the population of any country is employed full-time in the educational system, either as teachers or as taught. Consequently in 1950, there were about nine million people involved, and our Constitution-makers thought it was impossible to give education as a fundamental right to so large a number of its citizens.

This figure of 9 million has progressively swelled to about 25 million. It is, therefore, obvious that no successive government has been able to think of education as a fundamental right. Conversely, it has been wishful thinking that education should be universalised.

No doubt education could not be universalised, untiring efforts at equalising educational opportunity, manpower planning, cost benefit analysis and allocation of revenues have continuously engaged the attention of the authorities. Being on the concurrent list, both Central as well as state governments have made provision for funding and promotion of education. Even so, funds have continuously been inadequate for enabling Indian citizens get a right to education.

In developing countries many of the same tensions are seen. In all without exception, but especially among those that have moved from colonial status to political independence, the demand for universal literacy has been widespread. The right to free primary education is not only written in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but is also often embodied in the basic constitutional document of all developing countries. The result has been an explosion in the demand for universal literacy, particularly for universal primary education and adult literacy.

The basic attack on literacy must ultimately come. India is, perhaps, within striking distance of achieving this, though the educational system judged by the standard of the developed countries, is inefficient. It is marked by a high level of truancy (i.e. children missing school), old fashioned teaching methods, and widespread problems of trained teachers and inadequate buildings. Although manpower planners suggest that India should be putting its first efforts into training highly skilled and semiskilled specialists, there is no doubt that the demand for universalisation of education is overwhelming.

Yet another new trend in education is that of reaching out public school education in rural areas. In 1997 the Punjab Government had made an effort to open Adarsh Vidyalayas in rural areas so that children hailing from these areas could get quality education at their doorstep. This was essentially a scheme of the Chief Minister of Punjab, and donations of land and 50 per cent of funds for construction of school building were offered to various trusts already running schools. The managements of the schools were to be obliged to abide by certain commitment with the government regarding admissions, staff recruitment and financing.

The scheme was very attractive but it did not materialise due to non-release of funds by the Punjab Government. Notwithstanding this setback, the Governor of Punjab, Lt-Gen (Retd) JFR Jacob, has repeatedly emphasised that the existing public schools in Punjab should enroll at least 60 to 70 per cent children from rural areas.

It is significant that some educational trusts have already gone ahead with opening schools in rural areas. One such school is run by Guru Nanak Foundation near Chandigarh. Most of the children in these schools are from villages.

Yet another trend which is visible is the impact of information technology on schools. Most of the schools are spending a substantial amount of their budgets in equipping their computer labs with sophisticated computers. Access to the Internet, website, e-mail and C.D. ROMs are no longer considered a novelty. Yet the realisation that all this cannot replace teachers is yet to come.

While more and more sophisticated equipment is being pumped into the market some unscrupulous elements have emerged. Education has come to be treated as money-making business by some industrial houses. Some extremely simple matters of common knowledge are now becoming matters to be dealt with by educational consultants mushrooming throughout the length and breadth of the country.


IIMs rule the roost
By P.K. Vasudeva

ASPIRANTS for entry to Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) have appeared for the entrance test Common Admission Test (CAT) in December. Thousands appear to get admission in the IIMs and other prestigious institutes/B-schools which admit MBA students through CAT like Management Development Institute (MDI), Gurgaon, Business School, Panjab University and so on, because the upper crusts of global managers are backed to perfection in these institutes and get placements in the MNCs at high salaries and perquisites.

As many as 1,00,000 aspirants have appeared in CAT from various centres this year against 75,000 last year. The reasons for its popularity are (i) the top salary at the IIMs last year was $ 1,50,000 and (ii) almost every IIM had completed placement before the passing out of the final semester batch. Some of the top names in the corporate world empty handed from the campus of the IIMs. About 40 per cent of the IIM Ahmedabad batch was placed abroad.

MDI had companies like McKinsey, Colgate and Procter & Gambles in last year’s placements. The highest package snagged by an MDI graduate was Rs 5 lakh. The average was Rs 3.72 lakh. The placement for all MBA students was almost 90 per cent, because 10 per cent left for greener pastures in foreign countries.

The University Business School, Panjab University, Chandigarh, had companies like Asian Paints, Dr. Reddy & rsquo;s Lab, HDFC Bank, Ceat Tyres Spice Telephone’s and other IT giants. The highest package the top ranking students could get were in the range of Rs 3.5 lakh to Rs 1.5 lakh. The placement was almost 100 per cent barring a few who had their own family business to join. Today the Business School has more than 5,000 as the alumni.

The main questions being asked from the B-schools is — are these be losing their shine to information technology? The answer is yes to some extent, because the BCA is gaining ground and the MCA programme is becoming immensely popular as is the Masters in Information Technology (MIT). In a couple of years, these courses may become more popular.

While 40,000 students are estimated to have taken Delhi University’’ Bachelor of Information Technology (BIT) exam last year, only 25,000 sat for the Bachelor of Business Studies (BBS). In the northern universities Bachelor of Business Administration has become unpopular where less than 5,000 students appeared and a large number of seats are lying vacant for want of students. But BCA seats are all full and the poorest of poor management institute conducting BCA courses are happy because the hall is full to the brim.

All professionals today need computer application knowledge and use of PC as a tool in routine professional jobs. Hence, MCA and MIT qualifications would provide a versatile area of employment worldwide.

In this race, some students who are weak in maths and statistics feel depressed as they just cannot make in the CAT. In fact, such students need not even try for such entrance tests. They should try to go for other streams, like arts and social sciences, which are equally important rather than getting dejected. Engineering students do very well in the CAT, because their basics on the maths and science subjects and general awareness are above average than other students. They make good managers in their respective fields.


From Pervin Malhotra

My uncle who exports brassware and filigree work has invited me to join his business. As I know nothing about this line, I would like to study the intricacies of metal craft and ‘minakari’ in particular. Are there any good courses I can take up?

Avnish Jaipuria, Chandigarh

Although minakari is a traditional jeweller’s craft which is handed down from one generation of skilled craftsmen to the next, rudimentary aspects of it can also be formally picked up in jewellery designing courses like those conducted by NIFT (Accessory Design), JDTI at NOIDA etc.

However, as far as I know, the only institution which offers a full-fledged 4-year degree level course which covers all aspects of metal work including minakari inlay and enamelling is Sir JJ School of Art, Dr. D. N. Road, Mumbai 400001. Admission is on the basis of an entrance exam that comprises memory drawing, design and object drawing and marks scored in 10+2.

I am doing BSc (Hons.) in instrumentation from Delhi University. However, I am not interested in doing postgraduation in the same subject. Instead I would prefer to do a degree in some foreign language from a recognised university like Jawaharlal Nehru University or any other university. Please advise.

Avinash Agarwal, Khanna

Many Indian universities offer courses in foreign languages and Delhi itself offers a wide choice of facilities for learning several of them. However if you wish to work as a translator or interpreter, you would certainly require a higher degree of study as they demand a very high level of language skills both in the foreign language as well as the language into which you are translating or interpreting. In fact, it may not be a bad idea to follow up your formal course of study with a stint in the country where the language is originally spoken to absorb the flavour, finer nuances and popular colloquialisms of everyday speech. Special advance courses in interpretation are also available abroad. Sheena, what you must decide first is the language you wish to learn. Some of the languages that are most in demand from the point of view of commercial application and employment are French, Japanese and German.

Foreign language courses are offered both at the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi 110067, and the University of Delhi, Delhi 110007, at the degree level. Delhi University also conducts 1-year Diploma and Certificate courses.

While Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Kasturba Gandhi Marg, New Delhi 110001, offers part-time diploma courses in various foreign languages, almost all embassies or their cultural centers conduct classes for teaching their languages, e.g. French is taught at Alliance Francaise, D-13, South Extn.-II, New Delhi 110049; German at Max Mueller Bhawan, 3 Kasturba Gandhi Marg, New Delhi 110001; Japanese at the Japanese Cultural Center, 32, Ferozshah Road, New Delhi 110001 or Italian at the Italian Embassy Cultural Centre, Golf Links, New Delhi 110003.

I am a Class XII student nurturing hopes of becoming a lawyer. I am interested in taking up the integrated 5-yr law course either from a university in Haryana or from UP. Can you please tell me when the entrance tests for these courses are held?

Ranjita Gujjar, Ferozepore

The entrance tests for the Integrated 5-yr Law Courses are generally held in the month of June, July or August. This also holds true for Lucknow University in UP and universities such as Maharshi Dayanand University (Rohtak) and Guru Jambheswar University (Hisar) in Haryana.

For application details and deadlines, be on the look out for notifications published in leading national dailies between Jan - April.

I am diploma holder in mechanical engineering. I want to study BBA (Production Management). Could you please suggest some recognised courses?

N. Guha, SAS Nagar

Production Management is not taught in a BBA course. Most of the courses in production management require graduation. However, Annamalai Univ offers a one year diploma in production management for diploma holders in engineering.

Could you tell me something about GMDSS course which has replaced the Radio Officers course in merchant navy. What is the eligibility for the course?

Avinash Chadda, Shimla

Radio Officers handle the operation of the wireless and transmitting of signals. However, Radio Officers are now being phased out. The new ships are all equipped with GMDSS Global Transmission Systems which combine electronics transmission, fax, etc. via satellites (IMARSAT ABC) which has replaced the need for sending out messages by morse code. So although 2-week GMDSS courses are offered by various institutes, they will not fetch you a job as a Radio Officer as misleadingly claimed by some unscrupulous institutions. They are ideally suited for navigating officers who may be required to undertake the course while preparing for the competency certificate so that they can use the new communication equipment at sea.

I have completed graduation and wish to opt for BEd. Could you please tell me about the universities offering a correspondence course in B.Ed?

Vasundhara Kumar, Panchkula

Under the guidelines issued by the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE), the apex statutory body established by an Act of Parliament for co-ordinating and monitoring teacher education in the country, only working teachers with minimum three years of teaching experience in a recognised school (primary, secondary or higher secondary) within the jurisdiction of the concerned university are allowed to enrol for correspondence courses in BEd. All others must enrol in a regular face-to-face programme. This rule has been formulated with a view to achieving planned and coordinated development and also maintenance of norms and standards in teacher-education system throughout the country. The following universities offer BEd through correspondence:

* Himachal Pradesh University, International Centre for Distance Education & Open Learning, Summer Hill, Shimla 171005, H.P.

* Indira Gandhi National Open University, Maidan Garhi, New Delhi 110068.

* Kota Open University, Rawatbhata Road, Kota 324010, Rajasthan.

* Kurukshetra University, Department of Distance Education, Kurukshetra 132119, Haryana.

* Maharshi Dayanand University, Rohtak 124001, Haryana.

* Punjabi University, Directorate of Correspondence Courses, Patiala 147002, Punjab.

* Tripura University, PO Agartala College, Tripura West, Agartala 799004, Tripura.

A word of caution: Do not fall prey to local institutions offering BEd courses of XYZ universities. It is always best to enrol directly with the university concerned. And this holds true of most other courses as well.

Please send in your query preferably on a postcard along with your name, complete address and academic qualifications to:

Editor, Career Hotline, The Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh 160020.



Armed Forces

Jan 18 Indian Coast Guard, Coast Guard HQ, National Stadium Complex, Purana Quila Rd, New Delhi 110011.

Recruitment of Asst. Commandants in the following categories:

(1) General Duty

(2) General Duty (Pilot)

(3) Technical

Elig: Male Indian citizens.

(1): Bachelor’s degree with Maths & Phy as subjects upto Class XII.

Age: 21-25 yrs as on 1 July, 2001.

(2): BSc with Phy & Maths.

Age: 19-27 yrs as on 1 July, 2001.

(3): BE in Naval Archi/ Mech/Marine/Electron/ Design/Prod/Control Engg/ Electricl/Telecomm Engg OR 1st Class Engineer of Motorship certificate from GoI, M/o Surface Transport OR Bachelor’s in Marine Engg from the College of Marine Engg, under the D/o Surface Transport, GoI OR pass in Section ‘A’ & ‘B’ exams of the Institution of Engineers (I) in any of diciplines listed above.

Age: 21-30 yrs as on 1 Jul 2001

Selection: Test/Interview at M’bai, Ch’nai, Cal & Delhi.

Appln F & Physical Criteria: See Employment News and leading newspapers.

Jan 24 Indian Army, Additional Directorate General of Recruiting (Women Entry Section), West Block-III, R. K. Puram, New Delhi 110066.

Women Special Entry Scheme (Officers)

1) Non-Technical

2) Technical

3) Special

Elig: 1): BA/BCom/ BCA/BSc (PCM) (60%)

(2): BE/BTech in Civil/ Electl/Mech/ Electron/Comp Sc/ Telecom/ Archi

(3): PG Dip in Comp Sc/ Personnel Mgt/ Material Mgt/ Hotel Mgt/ Catering Tech/ English/Maths/ Physics/ History OR Bachelor’s degree (Non PCM) with 1 yr dip in Comp

Appl/System Mgt.

Appln Format: Employment News: 23 Dec.


Feb 15 Symbiosis Centre for Information Technology (SCIT), 7th Floor, Atur Centre, Model Colony, Gokhale Cross Road, Pune 411 016.

Master’s Programme in Information Technology (3-yr, F/T)

Master’s Programme in Information Technology (2-yr, F/T)

Elig: (1): Bachelor’s degree (50%)

(2): Bachelor’s in Engineering/Computer Sc/Application/ Electronics/ Sc/ Maths/ Statts/ Commerce/ Mgt (50%) with 1 yr computer educn. Knowledge of C essential.

Test: Feb 25 at 9 centres including Delhi, B’lore, Calcuta, Chennai, Hy’bad, followed by GD & Interview.

Appln F: Send Rs. 650/- by DD favouring "Symbiosis Centre for Information Technology" payable at Pune with two self-add stickers. At counter: Rs. 600/- in cash.

Feb 16 Indian Instt. of Information Technology (IIIT), Gwalior 474 005.

Integrated PG Program (5 yr)

Information Technology

Management & Information Technology

Elig: 10+2 (PCM). Age: born before 1 Oct 1984.

Test: 28 Apr 2001 (2 sessions).

Appln F: Send Rs. 500/- (SC/ST: Rs. 250/-) favouring " Director, IIITM, Gwalior" payable at Gwalior with self-add, stamped (Rs. 45/-), envelope (A/4) to The Project Manager (IIITM-Admissions), Educational Consultants India Ltd., Ed CIL House, 18-A, Sector 16-A, Noida 201301 before Feb 12.

Centre for Electronics Design & Technology of India (CEDTI), PO Box No. 10, A-34, Phase VIII, Industrial Area, SAS Nagar, Mohali 160059.

Advanced Diplomas/Courses:

Jan 08 1) E-Commerce (6 Mths, Fee Rs. 36,000/-)

Feb 12 2) Systems Maintenance (26 wks, Rs. 25,000/-)

Jan 08 3) CADD (26 wks, Fee Rs. 25,000/-)

Mar 19 4) Bio-Medical Equipment Tech & Maintenance (26 wks, Fee Rs. 20,000/-)

Jan 08 5) Hardware Electronics & Systems Design(26 wks, Fee Rs. 25,000/-)

Jan 08 6) Micro-Controller Based System Design (12 wks, Fee Rs. 15,000/-)

Jan 01 7) Graphics & Multimedia (12 wks, Fee Rs. 15,000/-)

Jan 08 8) DOEACC "A" Level (1 yr F/T, Fee Rs. 30,000/-)

Elig & Appln F: Employment News 9-15 Dec or website.


Mar 01 Army Institute of Technology (AIT), Dighi Hills, Pune 411015.

BE: Mechanical/ Electron & Telecom/ Computer Engg/ Information Tech

Elig: Children of serving Army personnel, 10+2 (PCM) (50%). Age: 16-21 yrs on 1 Jul, 2001 (no restriction for children of war widows)

Appln F: Send Rs. 500/- by DD favouring "AIT Entrance Examination A/C" payable at Pune (state yr name add on the reverse of DD) with request letter and 2 self-add slips (10 x 5 cm)


Feb 28 Xavier Instt. of Management (XIM), Bhubaneswar 751013.

PG Dip in Rural Management (2 yrs, F/T).

Elig: Bachelor’s degree in any discipline (50%) (SC/ST: 45%).

Test: 18 March at 6 centres including Bhubaneswar, Cal, Chennai, Hy’bad.

Appln F: Send Rs. 500/- by DD favouring "Xavier Institute of Manaement" payable at

SBI (Code: 7499) with two self-add stickers till Feb 15.

CARING (Career Information & Guidance), New Delhi