Time flies. It really does. It feels like just yesterday when I was pursuing my studies. But nope, it has been more than three years now and I am finally getting an opportunity to reflect on my experience through this blog. So here is my story about why I have not pursued my MBA. So read on! I have heard many of my associates and family members discuss the education system: it is terrible, so much anxiety, so many fees , and so much pressure to cut through competition and so on. But there was a time when I was living that life and actually experienced it firsthand. I did not get into a college of my choice at least partially because I belonged to the general category. There were only a few number of seats and many aspirants. Not getting into your dream college makes you feel miserable. Whether or not to abolish the reservation system is highly debatable.
Reservation in India is the process of setting aside a certain percentage of government jobs and vacancies in educational institutes for members of backward and underrepresented communities. There are numerous reservations like reservation for women, reservation for physically challenged, reservation for economically backward class, reservation for scheduled castes, etc., I am not totally against it and I do think that the philosophy behind it is very well meant. Marginalized students do need means to progress and help to come at par with larger society. Though, although the reservation system is an evident discrimination, it was started with the very good objective of uplifting the socially backward society and to give them equal opportunities. But with time, its significance and the way it has been used by various people have left many of us to believe that it has stopped delivering on its true intentions. People have started misusing it. There are many examples of people making false documents just to get a seat in a college or to get a job, recently in Bhopal an additional SP (Superintendent of Police) rank official was suspended for securing job on the basis of a fake caste certificate. This has resulted in more eligible candidate losing their seat to a person belonging to a reserve category.
My only issue is that special preference should be based on economic condition rather than caste. Some castes are economically very well off and have access to all resources, but still benefit from the reservations. Why should the children of SC/ST/OBC (Scheduled Caste/ Scheduled Tribe/Other Backward Classes) be considered under reservation policy when their parents have government jobs, are well paid, enjoy all the facilities required for a good education? I have come across some of my colleagues who belong to SC/ST/OBC category and have opted for reservation as they got bad marks. The ones who got good marks did not opt for reserved seats as they don’t want to be recognized under reserved quota category or be recognized as SC/ST/OBC because this creates a caste distinction which de-morals them. The caste groups who are actually deprived are unable to utilize the opportunities. The policy of reservations has been a matter of heated discussion over the past few years amongst all sections of the society. But it is me, you and the students who are affected the most from it. I really think it is high time that we brought reforms in the Indian education system. The reservation policy itself needs to be altered to suit the present day circumstances. In countries like the US, in some of the places quota systems have long been abolished, but it does not mean they are not working for the underprivileged in their society.
I believe that if the government really wants to uplift the underprivileged people of the society, well-balanced policies should be formulated. Policies such as; Reservation should be done according to income, rather than on caste basis, it is true that tribal people don’t have any source of income, lacking basic amenities of life and most of them work as labors. They don’t know even about the facilities provided to them, but some groups among them get jobs and are paid high, so for that group of people reservations should not be theirs. People should think about every group of people living in society not their individual interest. Politicians should stop using reservation system as a gimmick to have a permanent vote bank. Education should not be part of politics. Instead, nurture the saplings right from childhood for their bright future and then there won’t be any need for so-called reservation system in India.
As my big brother Zahied once said, “You can cut all the flowers, but you cannot keep spring from coming.”
Understanding my pain has helped me own it. I am grateful to be working for a great firm and now I am glad that I have an opportunity to do something for the society through AIF. Yes, I want to change my country for the better. Some may say that I should do something about it and not just write. But, I feel that discussion and debate is as integral part and important for change to happen. What do you think? Is there more that can be done in value education? Or is it a redundant cause?
Truth is a gift, a burden, and a responsibility. And, I mean to share it. This is the story you don’t want to hear when you ask me “Why haven’t you done your MBA?” But this is the story you need to hear.
Stay tuned for my next blog: I have a lot to share about the Indian Education System.