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Posts Tagged ‘State funding’

‘IT players failed us in financial inclusion drive’- says the RBI

August 17, 2009 1 comment

The rich target the poor ...

The rich target the poor ...

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has accused IT giants of being indifferent towards the cause of financial inclusion in India. “The scale of business in financial inclusion is so big that we need participation from big IT companies,” said KC Chakrabarty, deputy governor, RBI, speaking on the sidelines of a financial inclusion seminar organised by Skoch, a consultancy firm. He added lack of interest and involvement by big IT companies was making banks’ endeavour of financial inclusion unsuccessful.

According to Mr Chakrabarty, involvement of big IT companies was important to bring down the transaction cost. (via ‘IT players failed us in financial inclusion drive’ – The Economic Times).

How India missed out …

Due to our well-cultivated tunnel vision about English language (amongst many other things), India missed out on Japanese investments, technology and business. Indian loyalty to English language exceeds the loyalty of the British themselves to their language – and we refuse to see how this affects us.

Reforming Indian education

India urgently needs to put more languages in lingual-education basket – instead of putting all our eggs in the English language basket. We can’t do business with the French or Germans, Spanish or the Arabic speaking world. The Chinese and Japanese are out of bounds to us – as are the Swahili and the Bantu.

The Indian language basket also calls for diversification. India needs to learn more foreign languages. But with our bankruptcy of ideas on restructuring Indian education system or the vested interest banging begging bowls in front of the Indian tax payer!

The Indian software ‘success’

The great ‘software’ success story is actually two countries – US and UK who give between 70%-80% of Indian software business! This is coolie labour! We are missing out on the massive Japanese, French and the Spanish markets because we have not invested in those foreign languages. Same story in Europe also – major opportunities overlooked and ignored. And we have missed out on computing in Indian languages, because we have not invested there either. So, RBI’s peeve is right – but the solution is somewhere else.

Is it due to the apparent Indian decision to tie its future to the sinking ship of the Anglo Saxon Bloc?

Hand-over English education to the private sector

The reason we’ve driven all the way to Neemrana … is the NIIT University that is taking shape in the shadow of the Aravallis here, a 100-acre campus that though still under construction, will, insists Pawar, be ready to welcome its first students — for courses in BTech, MTech and PhDs in computer science and engineering, educational technology, and bioinformatics and biotechnology — in September this year. “We grew from a two-week course,” says Pawar — this was in 1981when NIIT was launched — “to a year-long course in 1989 as a need-based response and franchising model to grow HR practices, innovation and breaking fresh ground.” It rode the IT boom, creating opportunities for skill-sets in, besides IT, banking, finance, insurance and management. “The path to higher education was always clear,” Pawar now nods. (via Breakfast with BS: Rajendra Pawar).

Backdoor privatization

The Vedanta industrial group is setting up a University in Orissa. From a campus at the new Lavassa township, Oxford is going to start offering courses. These and other represent the quiet backdoor ‘privatization’ of Indian higher education.

Hidden subsidies

Large tracts of lands are being acquired by the Government, and handed over for a pittance to the private sector. Soon, we will have competition between State Sector subsidized English education – and private sector subsidized education.

Who will help Indian languages get back on their feet

While Indian language Universities are struggling – for funding, respect, status, support, foreign Universities, using paper money, backed by the Bretton Woods fraud, will impose their ideas, culture, etc in India.

While the English speaking economic bloc is struggling, India is not focussing on the French, Spanish, Japanese, Chinese Blocs which are large, excellent opportunities.

This can be a way out …

This actually is a good way out. There is a significant demand for English language education – at least currently. This demand can be met by the private sector. In the meantime, misdirected State subsidies can be gainfully used to help Indian language education get back on its feet.

In the not very long run, the state must get out of making up the minds of its citizens.

Freeing higher education in India

March 7, 2009 2 comments

India’s higher education sector is failing. Barely 7 per cent of Indians get to college; 99 per cent of these lucky few receive indifferent teaching in decrepit classrooms; they lack libraries, labs and computers; 80 per cent are unemployable; the moneyed elite flee abroad; meanwhile, we console ourselves with the careers of the 1 per cent that go to the IITs, IIMs and a few other premiere institutions. National commissions to fix higher education have come and gone. However, entrenched interests have blocked all reforms. Radical structural reforms are urgently required that will simultaneously attack regulation, funding, capacity, faculty and admissions/access. These reforms can create an open higher education system supervised by independent regulators and funded through government scholarships. Such a system is our best hope for responding to the massive need for higher education. (via Sanjeev Bikchandani, Jayant Sinha: Freeing higher education).

Sanjeev Bikchandani is CEO and Founder of Info Edge, which operates Naukri.com and other websites; Jayant Sinha is Managing Director of Courage Capital Management, a global investment firm.

Five points to perdition

These two writers feel, that Indian education ‘requires radical action in five key areas‘.

One – all Government controls must be scrapped. Two – Taxpayers must pay for scholarships. Three – private Indian and foreign universities must be allowed freely into India. Four – the tax payer (via the Government) must fund scientific and technical research. The fifth point (not clearly defined) that they probably make is that probably affirmative action should not be compulsory – but can be tied to Government funding.

Interesting.

What these two worthies pretend to address is the problem of the Indian education system. Instead, what they end up doing, is push forward the bowl in front of the Indian taxpayer – with pre-conditions. All that they are interested in, is addressing the problem of the English speaking elite. They don’t even pretend to address the problem of non-English speaking students.

Is it possibly, that the writers think it is below them, to attempt such ‘base’ ideas? Imagine addressing the problem of Maithili speaking students of Bihar or Telugu students from Rayalaseema! (Dont push me! I can be grosser still!!)

Of course, we should not expect them to talk about how nearly 800 years of violence against Indian education system must be reversed – and the Oriya student needs help more than the elitist English speaking student.

Of course, maybe I expect too much from them! Possibly my over-expectations make me fault them for not seeing the contradiction of allowing ‘foreign’ establishments to set up indoctrination and recruiting centers in India.

Blow up tax payers money

Blow up tax payer's money

Billing address

The Indian tax payer must subsidize the education of a privileged few. But the tax payer must NOT ask any questions or raise any queries or impose any agenda. The Indian tax payer must just quietly pay up and take whatever the English speaking elite dishes out. For the last 60 years, the Indian tax payer has entrusted this English speaking elite with authority for setting the agenda in the Indian education sector – and the track record of this elite is obvious.

How many times do the writers mention Indian languages (vernacular, native, Indic, regional, etc.). Nil. How many times do they use the word exclusion, colonial, Westernized. Nil again.

Throwing money down the English education hole

But, they sprinkle their article liberally with Western examples like how, “In the US, the top 10-15 universities such as those in the Ivy League, MIT, Stanford and Chicago play a similar role” Even though India pioneered the system of reservation for the disadvantaged, and the US followed India by nearly 20 years, with their diluted system of ‘affirmative action’, these two worthies use the term affirmative action four times – and reservations (nil times).

While a weak case can be made out for funding education in India for a limited period, the ‘freeing’ that these worthies propose is interesting. Freeing. Umm! Who is likely to benefit from the ‘freeing’ that the two worthies propose? For the English speaking elite, I suspect.

Indian lack of Japanese language skills comes in the way ? Businessworld

November 24, 2008 5 comments

We are proud of our Anglophonicity and our connection with the US. But there is a whole world out there which does not speak English. English is not the only language of scientists and enginners. It is possible to learn from any technologically advanced country, and people can do so by learning its language. China sends thousands of young people to American universities; but it does not confine itself to the

Anglophone world. The Chinese also learn Japanese to access knowledge from Japan. Similarly, the Poles and Russians learn German to access German knowledge. Japan and Germany have not missed out on Indian brains; they just do science and technology in their own language, and use the brains of nationalities that are prepared to learn their language.

Not that Japanese companies avoid English altogether. (via Businessworld – A Perception Of India).

How India missed out …

This article lays out how India missed out on Japanese investments, technology and business – due to our well-cultivated tunnel vision about English language (amongst many other things). Indian loyalty to English language exceeds the loyalty of the British themselves to their language – and we refuse to see how this affects us.

India urgently needs to put more languages in lingual basket – instead of putting all our eggs in the English language basket.

What we cannot … however, allow ourselves to become is an outpost of the Japanese business system – which is what this article pushes India to desire.

Doing less business with India however, is as much a Japanese loss as much as Indian!!

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