Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Quota system: My experience

As a kid all that bothered me in my school days were things like...
  • Do I have to submit a home work the next day?
  • Are there any exams coming up next month?
  • When is mom going to cook the special sweet dish tht she promised me last time?
  • When is the next cricket match? or say
  • How many days till the next holidays?

Small things for a grown up, but for a school going kid like me it was life that i ever knew anything about.

Though I was very much interested in the current events back then, I wasn't bothered about the intricacies of politics let alone the crap pile of caste politics. Those things were non-existent to my young and naive mind.

It was not until my penultimate years of my school life tht I was exposed to the murky & unfair side of reservation policy in India. All i knew abt the quota system until then was that it was a brilliant conceptual work from the man who wrote our mildly flawed but nevertheless a fantastic constitution. A quota policy with a noble aim,in which i believe, but at the same time believe in its obsoleteness in today's India.

My first exposure to this 'bad' side of the whole reservation policy was in the early weeks of my 9th grade. My cousin had jst passed the engineering entrance and secured a rank well below 17 or 18 hundred out of the 80 to 100 thousand odd engineering students. That was and still is a damn gud rank to get in my state. All he wanted then was to study either computer science or electronics at the Osmania University (in HYD) . But that was not to be. Being an OC student, though he had the merit to crack the exam all he could get was a free seat in civil engineering stream at the same university. This hurt him a lot for some time from tht point, he felt that all his hard work went down the drain simply because of a really stupid legislation. It's an another story tht through his shear merit and some luck tht he was able to slide into a different stream of engineering in his second year( the luck part was tht some one dropped out of tht particular stream after the first year and also tht wasn't a reserved seat).

This one is a simple case, which exposes the flaws and unfairness of the quota system. Years of hardwork and diligence could be blown away simply because of a flawed policy. In this case, my cousin was lucky and able to recover from a career changing and life shattering experience. Tht too because of his shear merit aided by some luck and not because of anything else. Just think about the students in other streams like medical or accounting where the competition is 20 times higher than in the engineering stream. I know people who weren't able to make it to a higher education degree, inspite of securing a top rank, because there were only a handful seats in the open category............destroying years of hardwork. This policy is simply unfair because it shatters hopes, dreams and aspirations of not only the students involved but also their families. Just think about the repercussions of such a life shattering experience that the individual would have for the rest of his life. It would be really hard for the individual to recover from such an experience and to establish an identity for himself in life .

Especially, in a country where education is the only ticket for the middle class to lead a decent and honorable life.


Anonymous said...

great blog dude....Manoj

Sri Harsha said...

Thnks manoj.