Unfortunately, over the years India and its government have not done anything that makes the country a nation and does not divide the people. British handed over the power to Congress and left. But this Congress was not the same one that had been fighting for the independence of India and its people. India had already disintegrated in two nations based on religion. Over the years, the number of power hungry opportunists in the Congress went on increasing. The party leaders went on putting all the energy in finding ways to win elections and to be in power to get the maximum benefits for themselves and their clans. The party learnt the trick-‘divide and rule’ from British who ruled the country for almost two centuries or more by following the policy in India. The constitutional guarantee through reservations for 10 or 15 years for SC/ST got perpetuated with maximum benefits going to some top affluent families and the political leaders of the castes.
VP Singh did further damage to the nation with the Mandal, as he had learnt the trick when in the Congress party. After returning in power again in 2004, every sane Indian thought the new Congress will go whole hog for development. But the Congress has worked on a single point agenda to do everything to remain in power. Arjun Singh, Man Mohan Singh, and naturally Sonia Gandhi directly or indirectly have been trying to keep the society divided and its peace disturbed in name of equity through reservations. Reservations for OBC in state-run higher educational institutions, in private sector, and now for the minority community- are all attempts in the same direction.
Muslims are really in miserable conditions. With a dropout rate of 25% and only 17% as matriculates, is there a surprise that only 6% Muslims are graduates? What is so strange if only one in 25 undergraduate students in a premier college is a Muslim and mere 63 Muslims are in 4,743 IIM students?
But why has it happened? Some blame it to the community attachment to Madarassa education system. But the Sachhar committee says, “Muslim parents are not averse to mainstream education or to send their children to affordable government schools.” I can’t but agree with Pratap Bhanu Mehta, former member of knowledge Commission and president of Centre for Policy Research. ” A cocktail of political forces has kept the Muslims backward. It suited the Congress to have them as supplicants, the moderate and progressive Muslims has been too meek,..”. None of the political leaders, be it Lalu Yadav, Ram Vilash Paswan, Shabuddin, or Sonia Gandhi appeal to the community and the parents to send their children to the schools, once the nation has taken up Sarv Shikhsha Aviyan as mission.
Instead of talking about the reservation, why can’t the government and its machinery work for improving the implementation of the unique programmes – Sarv Sikhsa Aviyan, Bharat Nirman, and NREG of the government has devised? If that is done efficiently and effectively and expanded to the whole of the country, automatically the destiny of the people of all the underprivileged will change for better even without any reservation. If Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan can cover all the people, if the quality of education to the children is improved to make their employability better, if every one is made to learn a skill that can sustain him, will there be any thing such as reservation needed? Why can’t it encourage the private sector to participate in the task of the affirmative actions to educate the people and for providing basic healthcare for all 100% needy without any consideration for caste and community?
As I heard the Hyderabad MP claiming that there are no government schools in many Muslim majority localities. The government must provide that and even private initiatives for setting up modern schools there must come. We all understand that the nation can’t live and prosper with Muslims living lives of destitute. I do believe that community has many skills. The boys and girls must get full opportunities to fine tune the skills and become entrepreneurs. Why do we keep on pointing out to them that they are backward or minority as they belong to a caste or community? Instead why can’t we educate and empower?
And why should our learned PM bring confusion with his statement, “We will have to devise innovative plans to ensure that minorities, particularly the Muslim minority, are empowered to share equitably in the fruits of development. They must have the first claim on resources.”?
For a Prime Minister all the needy citizens of the country must be same. Let the people stop using the divisive statements to make the nation one and integrated.