Wednesday, July 18, 2001,
Chandigarh, India



Are IT and computer education courses useful?

A scam is in the offing relating to IT education courses. Everyday we find a number of advertisements for the BIT, BCA, and MCA courses. The fee for such courses, ranging from Rs 40,000 to Rs 1 lakh per annum, has to be paid at the time of admission. Not only private shops but also universities are involved in this scam.

One such ad appeared for Maharaja Ranjit Singh Institute on the Punjabi University campus offering graduation and postgraduation courses in information technology and communication technology. A small brochure is priced at Rs 350.

A visit to the campus was revealing. No building exists. The Project Director operates from a small room in the Computer Engineering Department. No faculties have been appointed so far. The courses are yet to get recognition. The tuition fee is Rs 34,500 per annum.

Ten free seats are in the CM’s quota for each course. Are these for the poor or meritorious students or those having politician affiliation? Considering one seat costs Rs 4 to 5 lakh in terms of tuition fee in four years, the CM has a fair amount at his discretion.


One can well imagine the plight of hundreds of such institutes for which advertisements are coming everyday.

When every second institute starts offering IT degrees, supply will far exceed demand. Most of these institutes lack basic facilities, infrastructure and qualified teachers. These institutes have very poor placement chances.

Further, unlike other disciplines of engineering, these courses undergo changes very fast. The obsolescence level is very high. Under this situation, only those institutes can prepare quality graduates who have tie-ups with well-established companies and resources to keep themselves updated.

Therefore, before rushing with bags of money, think whether the institute has received recognition, whether it has infrastructure and teaching faculties, check its placement record and credentials, and compare its syllabus with that in the recognised institutes.


M.Tech entrance test

Students who appeared in the M.Tech entrance examination held on June 23 by Punjabi University and had their counselling on July 2 were denied seats because they were unable to produce the result of their last semester examination which was completed on June 25 only.

The university has spoiled the career of all these bright students. All this happened because of lack of coordination in conducting the entrance examination. The students who had paid Rs 200 for a prospectus and Rs 500 as examination fee and also got selected in the entrance examination are now out of the university.


Amitabh worship

On Guru Purnima when students acknowledge the contribution of teachers, a bunch of starry-eyed fans worshipped Amitabh Bachchan.

I feel pity on the mental health of his fans. Amitabh tops the list of income-tax defaulters. Mr B has a shady past. He joined politics and had to quit due to his utter failure. Bachchan’s involvement with Rekha is known to everybody. He never provided a helping hand for removing poverty, ill-health and illiteracy. Whatever he did, he did for his own promotion.

Instead of worshipping Netaji Subhas, Bhagat Singh, Rajguru, Sukhdev, Tipu Sultan and others who sacrificed their lives for us, a few insane persons has chosen the wrong way about which I feel pity and can only say: what a downfall, my countrymen?




Claims exaggerated

In the write-up “Theatre of another kind” the claims by Parnab Mukherjee that his is a “poor” “free” or “third” theatre, are rather swanky. Your critic’s comment that “Parnab Mukherjee might be the messiah for many amateur and aspiring theatre enthusiasts all over the globe” is unrealistic and exaggerated. A lot on poor, free, third or environmental theatre both in theory and practice has already been provided by theatre visionaries and practitioners like Beckett, Artaud, Euginio Barba, Grotovsky, Peter Brook, Jean-Louis Barrault, R. Scheckner and Badal Sircar. While Parnab’s theatrical ventures are laudable, his is actually a generative work under the influence of ideas and practices of the above-mentioned theatre personalities.


Posts of lecturer

More than two years have elapsed since the PPSC advertised posts of lecturer. Due to a ban on recruitment, the PPSC could not conduct the interviews. Now with the withdrawal of the ban on recruitment, the PPSC can hold interviews for these posts. Nearly 500 posts of lecturer are lying vacant in government colleges.


Fire tax in Haryana

A fire tax of 1 per cent of the rental value of a house is included in the house tax bill in Haryana. This is unjustified and irrational because most municipal committees do not have any fire-brigade, fire extinguisher or trained staff.

G. D. GUPTA, Jagadhri

A fine judge

The untimely demise of Mr Gobind Ram Sharma, District and Sessions Judge, Hamirpur, was shocking, Mr Sharma, just 54, was a fine judicial officer, unassuming, upright, fair-minded and exceedingly compassionate.

TARA CHAND, Ambota (Una)

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