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Saturday 31 March 2007

OBC reservations - A political agenda or Need for Social Justice ?

Recently, the Hon. Supreme Court stayed the 27% quota for OBC's reigniting the quota debate : Is Reservations the only way ahead for the upliftment of underprivileged ?

The questions that haunt me are :
  1. First of all, what is the basis for education; merit or is it for implementing Social justice ?
  2. What is the criteria for eligibility of quotas?
  3. Will reservations result in fall of standard of the education and work atmosphere?
  4. Will the really underprivileged really benefit from quotas?
  5. How long will the certain class of people enjoy the benefit?
The government aims and wants (atleast in the papers) to uplift the underprivileged and bring them at par with others by giving them the power of Quota. My question is how does the govt come to the conclusion that so and so people are backward? The government is dependant on the data and stats of pre-independance period (1930's) and of the time of Mandal Commission. It is totally unacceptable, to depend on aeons back data.

First, The government must increase the no of seats, improve the infrastructure reqd for basic education and provide fundings for the same before raking up the quota issue. The government is trying to provide social justice at upper levels of education when its base, the basic primary education policy is itself in tatters. The no of drop outs in schools per year is humungous and should put the govt to shame.
A recent report in a leading newspaper showed how a school in a remote village functioned. The so called school had just one single room for all standard and divisions, where sudents of every class sat in their respective groups. The single teacher attended to each class turn by turn. The corner of the room was leased to a caterer. The school depends on them for money to run the school. It is really a paradox, that the Govt. is aiming for higher level educational reforms when its primary education policy itself is a complete joke!

What about the people who have been enjoying the creamy layer till now ? The Court had asked it to be reviewed. But the political parties, fearing this would hurt their vote bank, simply rejected this. Also why call the Open seats as Open or for the majority if the %seats avilabe to them is less than 50%. Well, how can majority seats be reserved ?

According to me,
  • If quotas are the need of the hour then only go for it and also the max should not exceed 50%.
  • If quotas are introduced, equivalent no of seats in the open must be increased. this will prevent fall in the standards of education.
  • Quotas must be time bound and dynamic and flexible. If there is just one or two seats for the subject, merit must be given upper hand over social justice.
  • Public and Private Funding for primary and public education must be made mandatory.
  • Industries and Companies must fund and take care of schools in their vicinity. this will help them in the long run.
  • Governments which dont seriously allot funds or mismanage them must be removed! ( I wish!)
  • Underprivilged people must be identified and must be economically, socially helped. In the education front, create separate institutes for them. It is seen that many of them drop out of the colleges without completing the course. This sudden vacancy created is then exploited by the management and sold to rich students or else the seat gets wasted. This must be taken to consideration.
Also, i personally feel the govt had tried to pass the bill in a hurry, without taking the public into confidence. I seriously feel that the entire class of politicians are not serious about social justice. For them, it is all about vote banks and dividing people among communal, social lines. Finally, It is the student who suffers from both ends.
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Please comment and pen ur views !!!
U can also mail me at mailto://prashant_maxsteel@hotmail.com
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Thursday 15 March 2007

Mumbai - Churchgate Borivali Fast(Western) Local Trains

It is the brown-red or blue or simply silver colored metal beasts with a tender heart, that no Mumbaikars can avoid. I am talking about the Lifeline of Mumbai - The Local Train; the fastest, cheapest means to travel across Mumbai. People from all strata of life, be it rich or poor; everyone must have traveled at least once by it.

Getting inside train in Morning(6.45 to 11.00) and Evening (6.00 to 10.00) is Mission Impossible for many. Everyday morning, the locals fully packed and bursting to the seams, leave Borivali station on its journey towards churchgate. Getting into the train is in itself a great achievement. The already packed train is further pushed to its limit at stations between Borivali and Andheri. I suppoz this is the best packing fraction I have ever seen, better than any crystal lattice. Infact, hardly anyone tries getting into the train at Jogeshwari, one station before Andheri. One thing needs to be clarified that, here packed trains doesnt mean all seats are occupied and some are standing!It means not even a bee can traverse across the compartment!

As Andheri station reaches, there is a sudden pandemonium as some alight and some board keeping the total no of passengers almost same. I call it (Conservation of Passengers) for condition Station=Andheri, where, alighted = boarded. Moving further, the next station is Bandra followed by Dadar after which u can breathe comfortably. Now the void space is greater and the total no of passengers present is the ideal condition required in a local.

The same situation repeats in the evening, but now in the opposite direction ie. Churchgate to borivali)

Still, it is efficient and improving. Train traveling is part and parcel of Mumbai's Fast Life! This is life here! I salute the spirit!

Wednesday 14 March 2007

Is UP really Uttam Pradesh ?????

Many of the Indian TV viewers might have already seen the long ads on the Indian state of Uttar-Pradesh, featuring one of the Bollywood's finest Actor। if no, Plz check it out!

I do agree, that UP has produced one of the finest Hindi poets,literature and what not and being an Indian, I am proud of it! Speaking of state's or country's glory or achievements or glorious history or its economic power is fine।

But in the advertisements, more focus is given on the Data that Crime-Rate in UP is among the lowest in the country! Sounds Parodoxical! right ? Infact, crime-rate in states like Kerala is found to be very very high ! Wondering, whether the data is reliable and correct। I can put it in this way that, the statistics and logistics have been done correctly and is reliable; but data has been misused!

The hard hitting ground reality is, the data on crime-rate is based on FIR's(reports) registered per state। Therefore, in a state like Kerala where knowledge about fundamental rights and duties is high has higher no of reports registerd, unlike UP where many of the FIR's registered become the first and last report and in most likely case, reports are not even registered।

This was acknowledged in a leading newspaper by a high rank former police officer of UP!

Now what do u say ???

New Add-ons to check Download Mbs left and server status

Today, while surfing for new cool add ons for Firefox, i hit upon two cool add-ons।

The first one -> DataFox ( used for checking Mbs downloaded and uploaded ) is made for MTNL\BSNL Broadband connectivity। Initially u r asked to provide Username and password for the Broadband connection and then it simply retrives data from mtnl\bsnl server about our Mb Usage। The creators e-mail id and forum where other users have tried it is given in his website।

The link is http://www.thegoan.com/datafox/.

The second one is -> Server Status
U can use it to retrive data about the webpage server and data related to it( like failures,etc)


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