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The economic myopia of India and how it affects our resolve for education

December 15, 2011

Mohan, mdashf


I just wrote an article about what has possibly caused in a long term an economic recession that the USA and the rest of the world is seeing. It’s not a claim, it’s a musing of sort, if you find it is valid atleast in many of aspects then so be it. I thought I wrote a long article and when I read it quick the 2nd time, I thought, and so may you, that I could have written more. But I did not give up on my inertia to write, so I will write more, on various stuffs. Ironna omoi de.

I was taking a little time off and I find that I was thinking more of economy, so it is more like if you trigger your mind to take up on what is brewing inside you may find more than you already said. Quantum Mechanics, you can not completely cut any branch off it’s stem, especially if it belongs to an entity that is governed predominantly by the principles of nature where Quantum Mechanics is the most favoravble candidate and we have known this since about a century, it is called Modern Physics, because it is modernity and the mdoern life styles which always reminds us that our knowledge of the physical world has been greatly connected to the modern lives we are living, we are interested about Laser and NMR not because one takes you to be a winner in a battle and the other takes you to be a winner in a matter of battle against your life. We are interested because they are modern and trendy and they bring in applications as varied as medical science and war politics, but not all the applications have been invented. It’s a burgeonic progress. Massive and industrial. Far reaching and sustainable and it has brought forth with it a box of marvel candies. It is this aspect which left many people gasping at Einstein for not believing in Quantum Mechanics, in the beginning. How could a modern roller coaster that depends so much on how we can make a basic formulation of Physics be elusive to a giant. It was not so to the other modern propagators of science, Rutherford, Heisenberg or Feynman, but it was to a great giant white dwarf with dark hair called Einstein. Eisntein took his strides and it was duely recognized that the seeds of such formulation came only from the barns of a man duely called the greatest mind of humanity.

Economy is a social and existential transactional reality. And Science is the detailed study of such realities cutting across bounds of nationalities and culture. It is a roller coaster. If it swivels it just reminds us of it’s behavior. Thus economy has a great connection to science. If art and religion can have a connection to science, a mathematical branching of science called economy can also be greatly appealing to how we can understand the implications of science. Economy the way we understand in modern theories and practice is a science. It is not science proper, but one can not separate science proper from science not-proper because in doing so we would declare that science is dead. Medical diagnosis is not really that advanced to separate important branches of one body into separate pursuits without killing them both at the same time.

So I am inspired to look into why our state of affairs of education and science in India is an implication of the fallout of our myopic policies or practices in the last decade. We would have sighed in relief if only our previous woos were taken off by our growing economy, not the other way round.

In the last 10 years we have come up with more educational and science based research organizations than anytime before. What is it that blocks us from making a swift, impressive and needed progress in par with the rest of the world. It is two fold. One is ethical or ideal vision based. The other is the myopia that has misled us which has come from our economic glory of sorts.

When I said the first reason, it is clear that we have not yet as an independent and modern nation formulated good science policies and practices. We have mostly spent our time in making parallel arguments wrt the rest of the world, excavated myth to prove our points and our ancient intellectual progress. But not spent enough of our efforts in unifying a nation for what sort of science it can potentially do. When I say that I want to remind one thing. I have often said that science is international and it better be. Why am I saying then we need national efforts? The short answer is because this is how it is with the rest of the world with which we have modelled everything of ours except there is no balance, no actual parallel and our progress is sporadic. We have spent more budget on Rockets and missiles without a question and even when there is no actual threat to us. I am not questioning such a need. What I am saying is why we haven’t prepared ourselves enough to understand the actual Physics and engineering behind Rockets and their technology. We always view our missile programs as an indigenous Indianic effort but that is simply not true and the nation knows this. We are merely collaborators with many advanced nations where we spend some of our commericial credits and get what we need. We then cite the fact that we have been variously hindered by sanctions from the western powers and still have made for ourselves successful endproducts which we can be proud of. While commericial and political wills of India are far more successful at times, the scientific and educational efforts are not. In other words we have been trying to be a showman nation rather than build for ourselves long term facilities. Compare this to even very small nations elsewhere which are advanced in their facilities and you will know where we have faltered. I think we are a self seeking nation at most times, where any actual and factual criticism can make us shiver with anger and madness that we can orchestrate our egos on our own men and women. But it is simply not necessary. We are a capable nation but it is a process which we must sustain to continually avail ourselves such a privileged branding. It is here the role of the educational and research organizations come to resourcefulness. We have not prepared our organizations for such a role. eg almost all the private educational organizations have continuously flaunted their responsibilities for 1. quality education 2. research 3. scientific contribution 4. responsibility towards workforce 5. ethical practices

When one subverts the good practices of ethics one can never reach a plateu of success needed to sustain an advanced scientific and technological progress. This is never discussed on our media. That is why I said we are a self seeking nation. We often take great pleasure when something remarkable is reported in any international laboratory or organization where we have some sort of presence. But our new national labs take 8 years and yet do not see the light of the day. We can built international airports in 2 years but not international labs in 8 years. Where are our priorities? If our welathy celebrities and wealthy people spend only 10% of their wealth we would see advanced laboratories in a year. But no, it always has to be an IBM or GE. We have to change this mentality and it better come from wealthy people because those who are not are much helpless. {they will not be when the actual progress takes place, that is they will be beneficiaries, but they do not argue for what is blocking our progress, mostly they will argue if Sai Baba can do miracles or not} For one thing we  sleaze our celebrities a great deal. We have grown like that. We have not grown to be iconoclastic. We have not grown to question the morale of our leaders until it is too late. By that time they have had it all. Somebody is frisked in the USA airport and we make a hue and cry, somebody does not do things right in the country we are ready to work around. Its not an individual problem I am saying, I am saying we need a collective conscience to grow and sustain before we can make our wealthy leaders see what it is that the country really expect from them apart from their arrogant power and their Bill Gates like philanthropic outbursts. You have got the power, why don’t you change the ground, why do you blame the Government for everything, you are great private powers, change things privately. Jamshed Tata did change a few things across the country. We just have lost many opportunities of philanthropy from actual wealthy people who can change the shape and future of this country, but no we must always talk the black money route, bring back the black money, I dare you, that’s not going to come back, because chor machaye shor, like  cocks machaye shor in the bhor.

The private educational organizations have been modeled to make money not to impart education and contribute towards actual progress of the country. This country was never modeled for benefit of the community. It was modeled for the benefit of the few.

I think I will take a short break before speaking more of what we have not done, because for one thing if we can really make changes in line with this and unify our goals and ideals across the country like we have done for our business houses and big industries this country will benefit for centuries to come, we have lost opportunities of last 500 years when elsewhere in the world industrial and scientific revolutions were taking place. It is better to have them now than sleep with the illusion of grandeur that we are a great ancient civilization, that suits the purpose of the exploitator not of the mass. The mass still suffers from our massive myopia. Let it go like poverty must go. Let us dream big. Elsewhere in the last year or so (on my webmohan.wordpress site) I have talked a few times what is the unifying goal of a country towards ideals of science and education, in a nutshell: The best names of the country, IITs, IISc, IIMs etc should stop seeking self gratification and international fame, they should rather spend their resources which are the taxpayers contribution anyway towards unifying the educational horizons of the country. They should mentor not only other IITs but they should be ready and willing to mentor the 100s of anonymous Governmental and private colleges across the country. Only then I will have any respect for them. Without that they are also part of the problem. Let us have one country with one goal, let us all be responsible towards the future of this country and not escape through international routes.

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