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Sibal’s new initiatives are welcome

Union Human Resources Development Minister Kapil Sibal is keen to bring the Indian education system on a par with the one adopted by the developed nations. The decision for having a uniform policy of science and maths for Class XI and XII throughout India is praiseworthy. In fact, this is the need of the hour.

Students will certainly be happy, as the new system will ease their burden of preparing for numerous entrance examinations. Now with one single national level entrance examination for engineering and medical courses students will be able to effectively concentrate on their studies.

I would also like to add that the medium of instruction for science and maths should be English throughout the country as English is an international language.

R K KAPOOR, Chandigarh


Mr Sibal deserves praise for his new initiative. Uniform science and maths curriculum for students of Class XI and XII across the nation is a welcome step. The need for a national level common entrance test for professional courses too had been felt since long. It would be better to have common syllabus in professional education too.

Air Cmde RAGHUBIR SINGH (retd), Pune


Uniform maths ands science syllabus for Class XI and XII and a national level single entrance test for courses in engineering and medicine are steps in the right direction. The move will not only reduce stress on students’ minds but also help students whose parents are in transferable jobs. There is an urgent need to bring uniformity in the syllabus of other subjects as well.

MANA FEROZEPURI,  Ferozepur City


Uniform maths and science curriculum and single entrance test on the pattern of Scholastic Aptitude Test of the US are appreciable initiatives. Still, the issue needs to be debated and all its pros and cons should be weighed before the decision is implemented.


Indo-Pak dialogue

It goes to the credit of the Indian leadership that it has not stuck to a rigid stand (HK Dua’s front-page editorial, “The importance of taking a small step”, Feb 10). However, it should not be construed as a weakness of any sort.

The leaders of both sides ought to act wisely and desist from scoring brownie points.

There should be a clear understanding of the issues involved. Shrill noises and ignorance lead nowhere.

Mr Dua has aptly stated: “Also, it will be incorrect to view that offering talks amounts to giving a concession to Pakistan. Talks do not mean giving up the Indian position on any major issue; they are aimed at resolving differences.”

IQBAL SINGH, Bijhari (Hamirpur)


The editorial is praiseworthy. It is in the right spirit to continue bilateral talks between India and Pakistan yet these talks should be conditional and Pakistan must be asked to take firm action against terrorists operating from its soil. Though India should endeavour to have good relations with its neighbour, no compromise should be made on the issue of terrorism.

SK MITTAL, Panchkula


Mr Dua has rightly stressed the importance of a small step taken by India for a fresh dialogue with Pakistan. Surely adamant stance, unending distrust, hatred and scepticism are detrimental to peace. Even a small but timely step is symbolic.

OP COUSHIK, Kurukshetra

One rank, one pension

The government had accepted the long-pending demand of “one rank, one pension” for ex-servicemen below officers’ rank, last year and the Finance Minister had announced the decision in Parliament. The announcement has not since been honoured and the Finance Ministry in this regard has not issued requisite notification to departments concerned. The inordinate delay is causing anxiety among the ex-servicemen.

I request the authorities to take necessary action in the matter and also look into the similar demands of retired officers.

S P BASSI, Nawanshahr

Evaluating teachers

Shelley Walia has provided an in-depth analysis of the problem of evaluating teachers in his article (Feb 16) because neither student rating nor review by fellow faculty is successful in our country. In fact, teachers do not accept the idea of evaluation once they are in service. Hence, there is an urgent need for being extra careful at the time of recruitment when undue importance is given to marks but almost none to the aptitude or quality of their training.

Gems like Professor Stephen Collini or Professor Maud Ellman whom the writer has cited are selected or rather discovered and appointed by high-powered teams of calibre, dedication, honesty and integrity, something that is almost alien in India.

I think university teachers should be trusted and given the freedom to teach. They should be asked not just to ‘cover’ the syllabi but rather uncover the entire field for their students’ wonderment and discovery.

Prof MOHAN SINGH, Amritsar



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