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Our Demoralised Higher Education System: A Lived Experience

Representational Purpose Only, Source: Wikimedia Commons

By Dr Shraddha Srivastava 

I am astonished when I was gone through the many universities and institutions websites to apply for a teaching position; I suddenly got worried to see the faculty list of those academic institutions. As all the faculties from economics department have their Ph. D. from abroad even, New and old both. This is pathetic there is no priority for Indian Ph. D.’s holders. Is all Indian Ph. D. holders are useless? I always have been a dream to go abroad for further work or studies too but what else if I would be also included in the main list of faculties in those universities after coming back to my country. Hence, this is not the permanent solution means as to go abroad and have a degree from there, and got selection in Indian universities for a faculty position. This is just an injustice to Indian Ph. D. holders and we cannot resolve this biggest problem like this.


I and our many colleagues have gained other experiences as well. Here in Delhi, we usually go to India Habitat Centre, India International Centre, famous hotels (le-meridian, Taj, etc.) for attending any discussion, seminar, talk related various issues, we find that almost all the panelist having a degree from foreign universities or big institutions. But this feels joke to us when they live in abroad and work on Indian issues. How could it be possible when you have been living abroad for a long time, you are working on Indian issues when you had never gone in depth or in the roots of those Indian issues, even never seen the reality of those issues. They only heard those issues by the newspaper, or online or from their so called expert people living in India. And this become trend now that expert (Indians who are living in abroad now) of different-different subjects are working on Indian issues from abroad and they already appointed their Personal assistant here in India so that he/she could help in understanding the particular issues. I am not opposing all experts living in abroad but still some of them are like above description. Sometimes, we feel so distressed when we go through this type of moments.


The image of Indian Ph. D. holders is worst due to those Ph.D. holders who have taken a degree from backdoor or those who did not write their Ph.D. by own, or those who just want Ph. D. as eligibility for lectureship. But they have already a spoiled image of those Ph.D. holders who have taken a degree from the India in an honest way. We generally hear about the economic reform (Globalization, liberalization policies) after 1991 in India and after implementation of these policies, our country day by day still reaching on high growth rate. Therefore, with the same way, there is a need for reform in our education system. Why don’t we try to think across a border for education policy? At least, there should be some norms and regulations, for instance, Indian Universities and Institutions first give priority to Indian Ph. D. holder’s means they should focus and broad aspect for them for their knowledge and for their degree. They often focus on Tag and big named Universities Ph. D. holders whether they have the knowledge or not for those only big name works. At least judge all the Ph. D. holders equally. Sometimes due to this approach, many hard working and knowledgeable candidates went out of the focus. For god sake, test their IQ then decide whether they would not be taken or not. After this process, give priority to foreign Ph. D. holders. They obviously are generally intelligent, sharp mind people and foreign returns so they don’t need to prove themselves because Indian universities and intuition system believes in name and big taboos, not on work.


There is indeed a need for reforms in people's mind as well.  After Independence, the decentralization scheme (In the form of Panchayati Raj) came in the light. Some steps may be taken like the centralized scheme for the education system. Our education policy may be prepared under the centralized scheme in which a student or scholar complete his/her education in her/his hometown and get job or employment there as well. So that they don’t have to move in other places and which would make a balance among all states and districts. Besides, there are some views in my mind like the syllabus for all subjects should be same in all states which would reduce the differences between scholars from a small village/city to big/metro cities. This would make them a competitor in a good manner with others. The education system could be improved only when there would be only similar rules and regulations for all over the India otherwise there is no solution to solve this problem.



Dr. Shraddha Srivastava is an ICSSR Post-Doctoral Fellow at Institute of Economic GrowthDelhi. Views expressed in the Opinion are personal. 

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One comment

  1. It’s a shocking but appreciable observation and I would thank you for your effort in this direction.

    We are actually in a situation where tag works more than your intelligence.

    I think many know this reality but often very less have courage to express it.

    Congratulation for your piece of thought getting published and I wish you keep going

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