Haryana Teachers' Recruitment Scam: A Story of Politics, Corruption and Education
India's steady march to economic prosperity and its emergence as a would-be superpower is an over-popular story. However, what is particularly of interest to student community in India is a simple but a very significant question, that is, how well have our political masters utilised the financial gains, made in last three decades, to revamp the educational set-up in our country? In other words, has our government done its bit to improve a knowledge structure that is in dire need of fresh air? As much as central authorities may argue that things have drastically changed for good, one is always forced to look beyond the empty and phony assurances that hide the reality of our existing knowledge economy.
Teachers' recruitment scam in Haryana and the conviction of a former CM of the state, his son, bureaucrats and other government officials are only a reminder of the rottenness that has seeped into the very fabric of our political system. The scam in question here is more than alarming for zillions of students who dream of getting ahead in life through the only capital they possess, namely, honest hard work and dedication. But the noble actions of Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) chief and his cronies in crime wash away the hopes of all such aspirants that believe their painstaking labour is the only way to realise their dreams.
The deceit and ease with which Chautalas gave away 3206 teachers seats for government primary schools to swindlers is a classic example of how virtue and merit find themselves at the mercy of power politics. "What Chautalas and his chums have done is a tight slap on the face of meritocracy", commented Pratibha Rana, a B.Ed graduate at DU. The special CBI court also observed that the "politician-bureaucrat nexus has resulted in depriving such a large number of candidates of their constitutional rights." Verily, one only needs to hear the confessions of other co-conspirators to realise the omnipotence and omnipresence of politics of power. A district education officer and other principals of government schools admitted that they were forced by INLD supremo to sign false result sheets and make arrangements for the illegally hired candidates.
"Though I am satisfied with their sentencing, I really don't know if the ruling of Special CBI court is going to hold up in High Court", remarked Hanish Chanda, a student of Spanish language at Cervantes Institute, hinting at the possibility that these culprits may get off easily owing to their political influence. Despite Government's initiative to reform the education sector through multiple schemes such as the Rashtriya Uchchtar Shiksha Abhiyan, Problem Solving Assessment (PSA) test for IX and XI standard, distribution of Aakash tablets, one can't really hope to see real change happening soon. The reason for this failure can be attributed to one factor alone, that is, a corrupt political set-up that is driven by a desire of self-fulfilment, not public welfare.