Indian Institute Of Idiots by Chetan Bhagat

I was reading daily tweets today and I found really interesting article on Indian Education system by Chetan Bhagat. I liked it and thought that I should share on my blog. Here you go,


I avoid writing columns on the Indian education system as it is not good for my health. For days, my blood continues to boil, i have insomnia and someone real bad. The Indian education system is a problem that can be fixed. It affects the country’s future, impacts almost every family, everyone knows about it and it is commercially viable to fix it. Still, nothing happens because of our great Indian culture of avoiding change at all costs. And because change means sticking out your neck and that, ironically, is something we are not taught to do.

Still, with a movie coming on the education system, which came about because of a book i wrote nearly six years ago, it is important to revisit the issues. Soon, all the media will talk about is the anatomy, diet and romantic chemistry of the main actors. While that makes insightful breakfast reading, it is also important to understand the main problems with our education system that need to be fixed or, rather, should have been fixed 10 years ago

There are two main problems: one, the supply of good college seats and, two, the actual course content and intent behind education.

The first issue is about the supply of A-grade institutions vs the number of A-grade potential students. With one crore students taking the class XII exam each year, the top 10 per cent, the high potential population by any global standard, deserves a world-class institution. That means we need 10 lakh good, A-grade, branded college seats per year. Either the government provides them, or they work with private participants to make it happen. Until that is done, the scramble for seats will be worse than a peak hour Virar fast. No amount of well-meant advice to parents to go easy on kids, telling children to not take stress, will work. I’m sorry, if i have a child who i think is bright, i will fight to make sure he has a good college. If the number of seats is well below the required number, the fight is going to be bloody and ugly. And that is what happens every year.

What makes me most curious is: why doesn’t the government fix it? Real estate and faculty are often the biggest requirements in creating a university. The government has plenty of land. And any advertisement for government teaching jobs gets phenomenal responses. After this, there could be running costs. However, most parents are happy to pay reasonable amounts for college. With coaching classes charging crazy amounts, parents are already spending so much anyway. I understand Indians send $7 billion (over Rs 30,000 crore) as outward remittance for Indian students studying abroad. Part of that money would be diverted inwards if good colleges were available here. The government can actually make money if it runs universities, and add a lot more value to the country than, say, by running the embarassing Air India which flushes crores down the drain every day.

Why can’t Delhi University replicate itself, at four times the size, in the outskirts of Gurgaon? The existing professors will get more senior responsibilities, new teachers will get jobs and the area will develop. If we can have kilometre-long malls and statues that cost hundreds of crores, why not a university that will pay for itself? This is so obvious that the young generation will say: Duh!?

The education system’s second problem: the course content itself. What do we teach in school and college? And how much do you use it in daily life later? Ask yourself, has the world changed in the last 20 years? If yes, has our course content changed at the same pace? Has it even changed at all? Who are the people changing our course materials? Do they have real life corporate exposure?

I am not saying we study only to get a job (though many, many Indians actually do it with that main intention). However, even in the ‘quest for knowledge’ goal of education, our course materials fall short. We emphasise sticking to the course, testing endlessly how well the student has revised his lessons. We treat lessons as rules to be adhered to, and the better you conform, the more likely you are to score. I hated it personally, and i am sure millions do too but they have no choice. Innovation, imagination and creativity crucial for the country as well as more likely to bring the best out of any student have no place in our education system. In fact, we actually ensure we kill this spirit in the child as fast as possible. Because innovation by definition means challenging the existing way, and that is just not something good Indian kids who respect elders do.

The cycle perpetuates itself, and we continue to create a second-rate society of followers rather than change-embracing leaders. I have hope that the current generation will break this norm and start questioning the great Indian way. I have hope that the current HRD minister will acknowledge this problem and do something. I have hope that Indians will start questioning any politician they meet on what they are doing about the education system at every place possible. I have hope that people will realise that making new states is less important than making new state universities. Maybe i am right, maybe my hope is justified and maybe i will live to see the change. Or maybe i’ve got it all wrong, my optimism is misplaced and i am just, as they say, one of the Idiots

Chatan Bhagat, best-selling novelist

5 thoughts on “Indian Institute Of Idiots by Chetan Bhagat


    every year all parents have to undergo this horrible sickening melodrama of admission to schools.I HAVE WRITTEN NTH times but seems the message does not strike . anyway my job is to write it. so i m.

    first– primary education is the right of any child . the govt duty is to provide it. instead our clowns on top and the so called technocrats choose to conveniently shift this on to the private sector.point to note——— our leaders at the start of independence thought and wished for a strong vibrant nation, but unfortunately they lost the sight and the way at a crucial juncture in our nations history. ideas which should have been adapted and assimilated, evolved where instead copied and blindly pasted . we thought that by letting fresh air we would change but we forgot to clean the stench in our rooms. we thought that we were running but little did we see that we were actually becoming bed ridden. and as a result of our narrow minded dirty politicians whose ideology never went beyond their own tunnel vision went crafting out this nations future without even thinking the trap doors were left wide open. instead of building a system which was indigenous but could adapt we went upon building the nation on a platform that was broken and moth eaten right from day one. so then what do u expect——- . our education system is dead agree or not– it will die its own death one day slowly but steadily while the clowns try to desperately hold on to the shackles making umpteen number of changes on the way . kapil sibal intervention is just one example.why they r wanting to save this is not because it is good but because it serves their own needs, just like our lip serviced biggest democracy, while the desperation of the common man touches new heights. the people on top dont understand this and even if they do there own votes and future is more important than anything else. history can be distorted to suit the needs of whichever govt is in power. laws manipulated , lies spoken of in blatant manner and then best this dead system is spoken of in such high words. just imagine that u have to run for ur child’s admission u have to beg u have to pay and then worst the schools are all but a bogus. when u demand from teachers that they deliver it seems as u have committed a crime for which u have to pay through ur nose. no one seems to be listening.apathetic attitude, who gives a damn kind .some years back as i sat down i asked one school teacher if she ever felt from her heart that these were the future of this country and they were the ones who could turn the tide——— the teacher was left flummoxed. so there is the answer. but still wait i have not finished yet
    so where does this govt or previous stand. answer down the dust bin. while primary education is supposed to be free and higher education payable this country seems to be following god knows what. so no wonder a breed of enter pruners came who saw opportunism . this breeds corruption sure it does— again it serves the elite well but the people below are worst off. anyway who cares for them. again it also breeds poor standards as those with right connections manage to hoodwink the is a vicious circle and parents willingly or unwillingly are sucked into this. the cbse system is just one example of this opportunistic sick and virtually dead methodology. students least care to know what they r reading concepts totally zero but imagine ur getting 98 percent and the end result is that priced tutorials which will provide the gateway to that dream with western economies in decline that dream job seems more illusive than before but is the govt waking up to the new reality that seems to be on the horizon and what efforts they have to take to prevent it. as usual north and south block dont agree to this. and our 8% gdp prime minister also does not believe that the system is dead and needs to be scrapped. rather than spending crores in building Afghanistan and keeping over 80 consulates there?????????????/ would it not be better to spend this money where the mouth is. and then what was the need to spend crores on this stupid common wealth games. that air balloon costs some 35 crores. authorities are now wondering what they will do with it. i have a nice suggestion but i dont want to use such kind of things here. and these stupid people are saying that they created some thousand kind jobs.what a joke!!!!! this is the worst.
    kind of rotten self defensive statement that can be made. have u wondered what is our national character—- i was wondering ??? yes now i know god bless u all ———— we are apt in cutting each others throat and taking revenge. look at this —the milkman takes revenge -milk which is such a basic thing which our children take u name one thing that is not mixed in it from urea to everything. now look at the ——-er he gives u meat which is many times of dead animals. to complete the matters both are taken care of by the doctor who prescribes needless and unnecessary medications as he will be sponsored by the company. so there u have a unending circle — and such circles run everywhere– greed corruption nepotism dishonesty fraud lies these r the very basics of our society and then parents talk of best schools and education———— something some where is horribly wrong — problem the people are dead. they r apart of this sick corrupt system. it suits their needs.

  2. Hello my friend! I want to say that this article is amazing, great written and come with almost all important infos. I would like to see extra posts like this . – Elegant London Escorts, 65-67 Brewer Street, Floor: 2, London W1F 9UP. Phone: 020 3011 2941

  3. Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wished to say that I’ve truly enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. After all I’ll be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again soon!

  4. Normally I don’t read article on blogs, but I would like to say that this write-up very pressured me to check out and do so! Your writing taste has been amazed me. Thanks, very great post.

  5. Howdy! I simply want to give a huge thumbs up for the great information you could have here on this post. I will probably be coming back to your weblog for extra soon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.