Bihar: Some News, My Views

1.For nearly five weeks, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar didn’t attend his office at Patna Secretariat due to his wife’s illness and her subsequent death on May 14. The bureaucrats ran the government as the Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi had been also on a two-week Australia, Singapore trip to study their tax structure.

While all the people are sympathetic with the premature death of Nitish’s wife, the news that no one was heading the government during this period is disturbing and presents a case of lack of management organization and a system. Nitish Kumar must have a protocol of seniority among his cabinet members so that in absence of the CM and his deputy, a cabinet member automatically becomes the acting presiding officer of the cabinet and takes all the routine decisions. I wish Nitish Kumar or for that every head of any institution must build the discipline in its organization.

2.Twenty-eight of the 30 students of ‘Super 30’, the most innovative and exemplary coaching institute in Bihar have passed the highly competitive Indian Institute of Technology-Joint Entrance Examination (IIT-JEE) this year. Anand Kumar, director of Super 30, reactions was equally interesting, “We were sure of positive results as we teach them to eat, sleep, walk and talk only IIT.” It speaks highly of the focused and dedicated skill building that reminds one of the famous Dronacharya and the way he trained Arjuna in archery to aim at the bull’s eye and nothing else. Interestingly, Bihar’s Additional Director-General of Police Abhyanand, still teaches physics at the institute. It must be giving the desired break from the fatiguing police work chasing criminals and kidnappers of Bihar.

As reported, Super 30 is only five years old. Its success can serve as a model for other such institutes across India, but more so it must make some more Anand Kumar grow in the state and the country who can take up the task for the deprived class for preparing for the highest ranked and the most sought after examination of the country. Why is it not happening? It is matter of concern. But Anand Kumar must expand too. Bihar requires more of them with a new IIT coming in Bihar. Interestingly, early this year, Norika Fujiwara, a former Japanese beauty queen and actress, made a documentary film on Super 30 for its innovative and successful attempt to send poor children to India’s top engineering colleges.

3.Manish Kumar of Gyan Niketan, Patna secured 99.4 per cent marks in Class-X examination of the CBSE. I was happily amazed to know that Kishore Kunal, IPS, is the founder of Gyan Niketan too. Some more students of Gyan Niketan such as Prashant Suman got 98.4 per cent while Robin Raj 98.2 per cent. If I am not mistaken Kishore Kunal also runs the institutions such as Mahavir Mandir and Mahavir Hospital too.

I wish Kunal could have concentrated in setting up schools of the same standard in every district head quarters of the state, as Bihar needs them in hundreds. And I still plead that all the schools in Bihar should switch over to CBSE to bring a uniformity and to downsize the number of employees in the Board. But can Gyan Niketan come up with a mission that makes its students passing class XII compete in IIT entrance examination without any coaching that is costly and unnecessarily additional load for the students?

4.Nobel laureate Amartya Sen will head a panel that will oversee the opening of an international university in Nalanda in Bihar, and its first meeting will be held in Singapore in July. Other members of the panel are Sugata Bose, a grand nephew of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, who teaches at Harvard University in the US, Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo and a minister each from China and Japan. All three countries are expected to fund the university. After the Singapore meeting, three more meetings will held in China, Japan and Bihar. The state government had begun acquiring 500 acres of land for the university. The proposed university will be fully residential, like the ancient Nalanda seat of learning. In the first phase of the project, seven schools with 46 foreign faculty members and over 400 Indian academics would be established. The university will impart courses in science, philosophy and spiritualism along with other subjects. A renowned international scholar will be its chancellor.

I wonder why the name of India is not in the participating countries of the meet and in providing the fund. Why can’t the new IIT proposed for Bihar is one in the institutions in the proposed university? Why can’t the participating country establish an institution each in specific field of arts, science, or technology that be its showpiece and internationally the best? The project must aim at setting up a global village for eminent people who wish to live in vicinity of a great educational university? May be the professors teaching there may decide to live there forever.

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