Thursday, May 29, 2014

The New HRD Minister of India and Her Declarations about Educational Qualifications: Should it be a Big Issue?

As a very ordinary citizen of India, but with some wishful thoughts on the governance and administration of the country biased with some vested interests of seeing my nation progress in all fields for the benefits of  its people like me, I had come to the conclusion that Mr Narendra Modi would be a better choice for India as its new Prime Minister . I considered this after due comparison of all other options carefully. And like any other commoner, I too became happy when my wish became fulfilled eventually a few days ago.

But Indian media keep picking up sensational news pieces to be brought in to the notice of the opinion makers among the Indian society about the new Indian PM , his ministerial colleagues and their portfolios.

The PM himself has been in the news limelight prominently for what he is or is doing or would be doing. Some news researchers have brought the educational backgrounds of the new ministers in to public attention. 

The Modi government, they informed the people, has a 5th class pass minister and a few other ministers whose educational achievements have not gone beyond the school level.

More importantly, the new HRD minister and the youngest of the cabinet, is an attractive lady with good command in the essential languages but doesn't have any formal university degrees. The Human Resources Development minister of India herself is not much educationally developed! What can you possibly expect from such a government? The media brought out the feelings of the people!

Soon this news spread and has become a hot topic of debate in India. An online news portal brought out the ' strange case' about the ministers false declarations to the Election Commission of India. The issue was raked up apparently by a leader from the outgoing UPA government resulting in a fury of hot debate both against and in favor of the new HRD minister.  

I feel the current controversy is unnecessary. So long as the Indian electoral laws do not specify any minimum educational qualification for the candidates seeking to file their nominations for getting elected as the member of the parliament (MP) or becoming a minister of the Indian Union, it is not appropriate to question the wisdom of the new PM to nominate his ministers, even if they may not be eligible for getting any employment with any governmental organizations. 

Moreover, it should be remembered that we had many such ministers even in the past and no previous governments felt it necessary to change the Representation of the Peoples' Act 1951  amending the relevant clauses accordingly.

Of course, knowledge, leadership qualities and such other skills may be of great advantage for any minister who is supposed to hold immense responsibilities on behalf of the people and for doing good to the people. But it is an erroneous idea to think that such desired skills and knowledge are possessed only by those people who have formal degree certificates. If that were so, the best political leaders would have emerged only from the bureaucrats or the technocrats. But we know that is not true at least in the present time. 

So let us not pre-judge any ministers of the government based on their formal educational qualifications. They are leaders any way and all of them have some qualities different from the common people like me.

The new government and its actions would reflect on the nation positively or negatively after some time. The new government is only a couple of days old. It has already fixed its 100-day priorities agenda.

Let us watch and hope for the best instead of making a big issue out of some minister's educational qualifications or declarations!

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