Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Hail Reservation

India is truly on the path to global leadership. Not only do we have a booming economy and an increasing position of strength in international politics, we are teaching the world a thing or two about liberty, equality and fraternity.

The proposed policy on reservation in educational institutions for scheduled castes and tribes is a revolutionary step towards the emancipation of the downtrodden. Of course, some of those downtrodden may well be owners of Swiss bank accounts but historically and by virtue of their birth they fall under scheduled castes or tribes. The government is showing great sense of discretion in not letting financial status cloud their vision. The other small matter of depriving the meritorious upper caste student is also been seen in its true perspective. After all, how many meritorious students actually serve the country - most of them will take the superior education provided by India and then use it for the benefit of some other country. The reflected glory that sometimes belongs to India is dispensable, especially in these days of real glory.

On the other hand, consider the benefits of the reservation regime. India will forever lose the stigma of an old social order that believes in caste discrimination - a stigma it has carried for thousands of years. The Western countries, already falling over themselves in deifying India and its talent, and its large, rapidly evolving consumerist market, will hail the move. We will be the true upholders of democracy, a country where equality is not just a word but something that we live....and suffer, everyday, with faulty diagnoses and collapsing buildings.

The other benefit is even more far-reaching in effect. Think of this. After the reservation policy comes into effect, people will think twice about going to doctors and hospitals. To ensure that they don't have to do it, they will take care of their health - they will eat right, exercise, give up smoking and drinking, go vegetarian, start mediatation and...and, practice birth control. In one fell swoop, the government has tackled the problems of overpopulation, national health, the issue of lack of beds in hospitals and so on and so forth. It won't be surprising if world leaders now look towards India to lead the path in innovative strategising and policy making.


An appeal to the demonstrators - get your perspective right. You are seriously jeopardising India's chances of global glory. No wonder the official reaction is so severe!

4 Comments:

At 11:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, sweet sarcasm!

 
At 1:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MoM, you might have noticed during your deep study of human nature that it is not that anybody is born with merit. One develops it depending on circumstances. In India, all decision-making powers have been in the hands of members of the so-called 'meritorious' upper castes. From 1947 onwards, all decisive posts have always been held by 'meritorious' upper-caste people. If they have been in power and have taken decisions then, why is India still a third-world nation? Why are we still underdeveloped? And why does India still have a majority of poor and uneducated people?
And finally, MoM, you might have noticed the glaring lack of a pro-reservation voice in the media, today, even during this raging controversy.

 
At 2:29 AM, Blogger Mind over Matter said...

Dear Anon, first of all, this is no deep study of human nature - these are purely my opinions, though, in this case, I would say that they are validated by a large majority. 2ndly, I think you are confusing 'people in power' and 'people with merit'. Don't we all know that those two don't go together, in most cases? India's underdeveloped state has nothing to do with 'unmeritorious' upper caste people holding positions of power. Your contention that upper caste people have been holding 'all' the decision-making posts is also a generalisation at best.

I do agree that merit needs the right circumstances to reach full potential. But that's true for both upper and lower caste people -indeed there are quite a few meritorious but poor upper caste students who need a 'circumstantial' push in order to be successful. I have nothing against reservation - we already have a significant amount of seats reserved for those who need the 'circumstance' badly, and it is only fair that talented students of the backward classes should get this benefit. But 49.5% reservation? Isn't that a bit too much? In most institutions, many of the reserved seats (with the current 21%) remain vacant or are given to underperforming individuals who are eligible to those seats while many a meritorious upper caste student does not get a seat because none are available in the unreserved section.

Is this the 'fair and equal' state that you are backing, where in the zeal to promote backward classes we forget all about merit? More alarming is the effect such reservation can have on the rest of the country, when 'quota' doctors treat their children and 'quota' engineers build the bridges they travel on!

As for the media, do you contend that it is so upper caste dominated that not a single backward class reporter managed to voice a protest?

 
At 2:52 AM, Anonymous IB said...

Anon,
India is not underdeveloped or third world any longer. You are stuck in 1947 and in labels designed in the mid twentieth century. Most of us are not. Similarly, caste capitalising politics, which is really what this issue is all about will hopefully be a matter of the past soon. And finally why don't you, you young naive creature of indeterminate sex and caste, come up with a few stronger and properly substantiated arguments atleast in this medium of the web.

 

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