“History is created by those who are enlightened by the power of knowledge, not by arrogant nerds”
Niyati * and Nitin* were classmate’s and were in the commerce stream. Niyati on one hand was an introvert; shy yet a soft spoken girl whereas Nitin on the other hand was an ambivert yet a confident guy. When it came to studies Niyati was an average performer whereas Nitin on the other hand was a bright student who used to excel in academics, was clear about his goal and knew where he wanted to reach in his life. But there was one thing about Nitin, he described himself as a down to earth guy and it reflected in his personality. Never ever he boasted about his achievements, was rather helpful and was actually the apple of the eyes of his teachers. Niyati always teased Nitin for him being “so humble yet good at academics “and used to tell him again and again” next year you are either going to study in St Stephens College or Shri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC)”. But Nitin neither felt flattered nor uneasy because he knew he didn’t want to continue with commerce rather he wanted to make a niche for himself as a writer. Soon came the most dreaded period in the life of a class twelfth student. The “BOARD EXAMS”. The month of March was a stressful period for all the class XIIth students and Nitin and Niyati were no exception. And soon by the end of May the results were declared. Nitin scored 91% with a 95+ in all the four commerce subjects and on top of it he was the subject topper in his school for Business Studies. But the poor guy scored a mere 69 in English. On the other hand Niyati who was comparatively less focused than Nitin and who accepted things as they came scored 90% which was quite unbelievable for her. While on one hand Nitin surely had a reason to celebrate but he could not. He wanted to do English honors from St Stephens College (Delhi university) which is one of the premier institution of this country and has a long list of famous alumni like Shashi Tharoor (author, peace maker) Konkana Sen Sharma(actor),Montek Singh Ahluwalia(economist) to name a few. But the poor guy didn’t know that despite being a 90 per center he could not study in his dream college.
REASON: The cut off in St Stephens for English honors was 97% and a minimum of 90+ in English was needed which he didn’t have. In fact with a score of 69 in English he couldn’t even make it to the second rung colleges. The only way out was: he either be a Christian or belong to any of the minority community to get admission. On the other hand for Niyati it turned out to be a cake walk. She made it to Shri Ram College of Commerce through the reserved category quota, perhaps rather than mincing words she belonged to the Scheduled caste and for her the doors of all the top notch colleges were open.
What an irony it was. A simple guy who relied totally on hard work and had a dream in his eyes was today left stranded, with nowhere to go. Post result he was always seen teary eyed, full of grief and the reason was quite clear. Despite of all the year’s hard work, sacrifices he made just for a reason “once I get into a good college I can enjoy all aspects of life, I can fulfill all my suppressed desires” ………and he wasn’t asking for too much. Where as Niyati who didn’t have a goal clear in her mind was now a part of SRCC which meant she could enjoy all aspects of a college life and had a secure future altogether for a reason . And what clearly seems to be the root cause of the sufferings of many NITIN’S across the country was: RESERVATION IN EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS.
If we date back to the history, the proposal of reservation for the unprivileged class was introduced by late Dr. B.R Ambedkar.Today’s gen-x views him as a culprit for sowing the seeds of reservation in the society, the brunt of which has to be faced by the general category. But it is for a fact that his intentions were not wrong rather it was appropriate considering the era to which he belonged. Ambedkar was of this view that at the time of independence of the country there existed a lot of prejudice against marginalized community as they were considered down trodden and were stripped of their rights which was completely inhumane. Keeping this view in mind he introduced the system of reservation with a purpose of empowering the marginalized community, awarding them their basic human rights and making them independent so that the dream of a united and independent India could be fulfilled. On top of it, he was of the view that the reservation system need not become a regular feature of our country. It was meant to be continued till the time the glaring caste inequalities in our country didn’t vanish off completely in all fields, be it education, politics or any other field. But his noble view was taken for all the wrong reason by the successive government which included more of corrupt politicians and officials. Just to capture the vote banks of the marginalized communities which were by now financially, socially, economically independent, the successive government continued with the policy. The icing on the cake comes along with the fact that these marginalized communities are equally responsible for the carrying out of this policy till date. Threatening not to vote in the elections, resorting to violent measures if reservation policy is withdrawn or to put it down simply resorting to BLACK MAILING, the seeds of reservation could never be removed from India. After all which government would like to loose power by going against the people who form a large part of their vote bank. All sense of morality, equality and unity is lost. In the face of it, it’s the genuine talent which is lost retarding the progress of the country.
What was meant to be a boon for India is actually turning out as bane. And this is one reason for the brain drain theory. When the genuine talent is not being recognized by the country why would any sensible, intelligent youth waste his life in a country which is still so stereotype and continuing with old policies. In fact the harsh reality of reservation in educational institutions comes to surface at the time of the admission process when several application are rejected just because the student is from general category. A premier institution like St Stephens is loosing that elitism tag by resorting to 50% reservation for Christians, 10% for Scheduled Caste(SC), Scheduled Tribes(ST) and Other Backward Classes (OBC) and the remaining 40% for the general category for which the cut offs are year by year touching the sky line. For instance a student from Christian category scoring 85% will easily get admission in this college after clearing the interview(not to forget) while the other one from general category scoring 94% will still be doubtful of even making it to the interview stage. Why is this difference? Why are we killing the genuine talent at our own hands? When it comes to education it doesn’t matter whether you are Christian, Hindu, Muslim, Sikh. Because at the end of the day the brains are same and the knowledge gained is same.
In the wake of reservation so many Nitin’s have to sacrifice their dreams , have to settle for something less than the best. While on the other hands so many Niyati’s are just taking up the place which belonged to someone more deserving then them.
Today Niyati is enjoying the campus life, uses a laptop in the college, studies in air conditioned class rooms, enjoys hearty meals at Kamla Nagar market (the best hangout joint for north campus students) and after passing out from SRCC she will definitely turn out into a snob flaunting her feathers of elitism in her professional life but she still doesn’t know what she actually wants to become in life, what is her goal , what is her LAKSHYA?
Whereas Nitin with a shattered dream goes to an off campus college , sits in a dingy ill lit classroom where there is no electricity ,forget air conditioner, the fans also don’t work, has no single friend with whom he could enjoy the college life , forget laptops there isn’t a proper seating place and does not even have the luxury of traveling by metro. He has to travel either in auto or in DTC bus where he has to fight it out everyday. But there is one thing about him which still rattles me ……while traveling in the auto he looks out of the window and sees a lady traveling in a big chauffeur driven car, and he knows one thing: when he will make a niche for himself as a writer he will also travel in an air conditioned car bigger than the one he saw and would look at the DTC bus with a simple thought: whatever happens it happens for the good.
Diclaimer : The following information is factual and does not mean to offend any caste, community or religion or any educational institution in general.
PS(*)– The story of Nitin and Niyati is not a cock and bull story which has been cooked up just for the sake of supporting the view, but is very much real , the only difference being that the names have been changed for reasons of anonymity.