Allegedly | Society

How to solve the JNU problem

Image: Getty Images/ iStock

Image: Getty Images/ iStock  

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Wouldn’t it be wiser and more cost-effective to keep people uneducated, ill-informed, and seeped in a miasma of fake news, fake history and authentic propaganda?

Believe me, I have nothing against JNU students, even though they are students of JNU. But I cannot keep quiet when hundreds of them descend on the streets of Delhi, causing traffic jam, harassing policemen, and demanding that the government continue to subsidise their education. Why should I allow my hard-earned money to be used for feeding and educating the next generation of Indians when the same money could be put to better use, such as buying the next generation of fighter aircraft?

The government barely has enough funds to subsidise various crony capitalists. Plus it desperately needs money to pay for 36 Rafale jets, the Russian S-400 anti-missile missiles, and the multi-million dollar Pegasus spyware without which no government effectively carry out its primary duty: snooping on journalists, activists, and Opposition leaders.

Where will it get the money for all this if it continues to subsidise the education of its own citizens, that too when it knows full well that the very students whose education it is paying for could one day take to the streets, questioning the wisdom of its policies? Wouldn’t it be wiser, and more cost-effective, to keep the youth uneducated, ill-informed, and seeped in a miasma of fake news, fake history and authentic propaganda rather than expose them to the expensive art of critical thinking?

Economic slowdown

And please, let us not forget that the economic slowdown India is going through is no joke. Millions of jobs have already been lost. Millions more will be gone in the coming months. So tell me: why waste money subsidising the production of more graduates when there are no jobs available to absorb those graduates? Why build up expectations and then disappoint them?

If the son of a manual scavenger gets a Ph.D in economics, he will naturally want to be an economist. He would rather stay unemployed than do manual scavenging like his father. But if we keep the fees high enough so that it’s impossible for a manual scavenger to educate his children, rest assured they will happily take up any form of back-breaking manual labour, no matter how demeaning.

Not only would they not join India’s already swollen ranks of the educated unemployed, they would also never refuse to be exploited by anyone who can pay them the minimum needed to keep body and soul together.

Restricting higher education to the elites is the best way to combat the rising menace of unemployed graduates, as one can be sure that a family which can spend several lakhs to put their kids through college wouldn’t have a problem spending several lakhs more to support them until they find a job or depart the mortal plane of existence, whichever comes first.

Also, students who don’t need the government to pay for their education are unlikely to ask the government for jobs either: so it’s a win-win, for the government, and for social peace.

On the other hand, students who get into a place like JNU only because the government is footing the bill have never-ending expectations from the State. It begins harmlessly enough — with a simple demand that the government pay for their education. Let’s say the government does so, as it has been doing all these years in the case of JNU.

It doesn’t stop there. Having spent four or more years living off the State’s largesse, the ingrates then expect the government to give them jobs also. Let’s say we give them all government jobs. They still won’t be satisfied. They will come up with fresh demands, such as decent roads, clean air, law and order, etc.

True to the constitution

In the case of JNU, these demands cross all limits and reach levels of absurdity not seen in any other banana republic. In fact, the demands of the current lot of JNU students are inspired by horribly decadent Western ideas such as democracy, secularism and, believe it or not, equality!

Some go so far as to demand that the government of the day respect the ‘Indian constitution’. Can you beat that?! Clearly, the pseudo-historians who rule the roost in JNU have never taught them that what they believe to be the ‘Indian constitution’ is a relatively new document overwritten on an ancient palimpsest, and that beneath the overhyped Ambedkar-wala constitution is a much older text, the Manusmriti, which is the real constitution of India.

Instead of JNU, had these students attended WhatsApp University, they would have learnt that it’s only a matter of time before the Western impostor is demolished and the real constitution of India takes its place.

You may wonder: What happens then to all those Indians, especially the JNU-types, obsessed with the Ambedkar-wala constitution? Well, there’s a simple solution: let’s privatise JNU and use the proceeds to buy them five acres of land in a prominent location in Islamabad.

The writer is Social Affairs Editor, The Hindu.

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Printable version | Dec 11, 2019 8:36:43 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/how-to-solve-the-jnu-problem/article30049170.ece

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