Sunday, October 16, 2011


IIT-JEE has been renowned as one of the most prestigious entrance examination not only in the history of our great country, but also throughout the world. The IITs have consistently kept their standard high by staying apart from the other institutes and setting their own entrance examinations. Over the years, this has ensured that the quality of students entering the campus have been the best and the students passing out have shown impact not only in India but all over the world. Unfortunately, this may no longer be the same if the ideas proposed by the HRD minister, Mr. Kabil Sibal, are enforced. Instead of uplifting the level of our esteemed Universities, it may even go on to degrade them!

According to recent news the Minister of HRD has put forth a proposal which proposes a Common Entrance Test to seek admission in any Engineering College in the country which will consist of questions on Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and an Aptitude Test. Moreover, this Aptitude Test will comprise of questions from all fields which the students study throughout their curriculum like History, Geography, General Knowledge etc.This added entity of Aptitude test will put more burden on the students as now they will have to study 4 subjects compared to the previous three. 

Apart from this, there is another glitch in the proposal. The HRD Minister has proposed that the marks scored by the students in their respective board examinations will also get due consideration while deciding the merit list of the test and that final admission to the colleges would be given by calculating an aggregate of the marks scored in the Common Entrance Test and the Boards.

The Government says that they will make the curriculum same throughout the country and that a Percentile system will be adopted to give equal opportunities to all students irrespective of the boards they belong to. But how could this be justified in a country where roughly 50 lakh students appear for Board examinations every year? Bringing about the same curriculum in our country, where we have 22 official languages being spoken in different parts, would hamper the regional diversity. 

While the idea of using results from the board examination is somewhat acceptable, it will take some time before the examination can match the standard of IITs. For one, the success in board examination in the current format relies more on mugging up of the concepts rather than on the practical applications of it -- which is what is tested by the JEE. Moreover, the papers are corrected by a diverse set of teachers which results in a great disparity in the marks achieved by students.

What will you do to check that, Minister of HRD? The center of board examination come in every nook and corner of the country. Once people are aware of the fact that IITs will give consideration to board marks, I tell you, everyone in the country would get the maximum possible marks. We can't deny the fact that there are places in the country where students could even open the books to write in the answer sheet and pass the examination. 

The changes that took place in the pattern in the year 2006 were somewhat reasonable and profound (Inclusion of reading comprehensions and Matrix Match type questions). But this time, the HRD has decided to take our IITs to a level which would never be uplifted by any reforms. 

Over the years IITs have created world class educational platforms. The faculty and alumni of IITs continues to make huge impact in all sectors of society, both in India and abroad. These are the people who passed one of the world's toughest tests to get admission to the IIT. The impact of IITians could be seen in each and every part of the world and society as a whole.

While addressing a discussion organized by the CII and Business Council on 14th Oct 2011 in Washington DC, the HRD minister said that that the country needs another 1000 Universities and 50,000 colleges in next 10 years. He also said that the US Universities should open their centers in India for R & D works.
Obviously once the level of our IITs will fall, these foreign universities would attract talent from the country. This will directly make the foreign universities prosper due to their talent pool which will comprise of the best brains in the country.

We can't let this happen to our country. we can't let this happen to the IITs. They were, they are and they will produce the best Engineers, not only in the country, but in the whole world. This pattern change would only bring about a transformation which would never prove to be fruitful to the nation. The test for these prestigious institutions holds the key for being the Numero Uno. Once the level falls, IITs fall. 

Bill Gates once said," If there is one thing that IIT has done -- it is the merit based approach and I won't temper it." 

So why temper an exam which is known for its 45 years old nature of remaining the same and still giving entry to those which are the best brains not only in the country but in the whole world.
May the HRD minister Gets Well Soon...

Save IITs.. Save the Nation.