I have believed that the Indian Middle Class is a major force in the world – it has virtually, against all odds, created the Tech Miracle in our country through sheer force and grit of the values steeped in education.
They have their kids sent to Kota for IIT preparation, or to Delhi for IAS preparation, or to Australia for further education – even sacrificing their retirement monies.
This group of Indians somehow collectively knows what is it in the world that gives the maximum bang for their buck with regards to their kids’ future and they will go to any length to provide them for their kids. Under the onslaught of the ill-conceived reservations, they will find new avenues to rise! And the world of education business – the very group that brought the “Donation Engineering and MBA colleges” – and others like the top Univs of the US who are witnessing (and the trend will seem to rise with the Homeland Security etc.) a slowdown in their enrollments – will bring in more Private Educational Insititutes and Campuses to fulfill the hunger of the middle class for the best (most paying) educational experience in the world!!
They will force more private efforts like ISBs to open in technical education therefore – forcing the IITs and IIMs to become irrelevant in the long run – just as 100% of our Universities have become! Kids go there to get the stamp of graduation but they prepare themselves at NIITs or at MBA prep places to get ahead in life. They will find a similar way out in this case too. The collective force of middle class will make the IITs and the IIMs of tomorrow as irrelevant and as irreverent as the Delhi/Punjab/Bombay Universities of today (in my parents generations these places were THE places of HIGHEST education standard!!).
Prophecy and Verity:
The issue, however, will in the ultimate analysis be:
How will that benefit the poor and those for whom the reservations were meant?
When IITs have become the second-rate educational centers as they are well destined to be as things look like (more classes, less faculty, diluted exams, poorer image etc) – then these poor will again be at the same place!! Left to eat the leftovers!!
If ONLY, someone had given them the wherewithal and empowered them with what is the right of every Indian – basic good and inexpensive education – then they could have found their way into the best of places in India and overseas!!
Give them grants, subsidies, loans – so the brightest amongst the poor can get to the top!! But to give the most opportunist among the poor the easy way to the “top” is the most stupid and ill-conceived way possible!!