06 August, 2021

'System's Over-Regulated, Under-Governed'

Chairman of the NKC on how he etched out a detailed education framework for the country, carefully negotiating the course in an environment of reservations

Jitender Gupta
'System's Over-Regulated, Under-Governed'
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Even for a man who has worn many distinguished hats over a long career—telecom and computing guru, inventor and entrepreneur—redrawing the roadmap for education in India has proved to be an enormous challenge. Invited by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2005, 66-year-old Sam Pitroda has chaired the National Knowledge Commission (NKC) for over two years. It has been a controversial stint, with Pitroda locking horns with Union HRD minister Arjun Singh and sparring with some NKC members. His comments that "venerable" institutions like the UGC need to be recast or done away with have not amused the HRD minister. At the same time, the NKC—whose tenure ends in October 2008—has etched out a detailed education framework for the country, carefully negotiating the course in an environment of reservations. Excerpts from an e-mail and telephonic interview with Anuradha Raman:

After a long, long time, a fee revision for state-owned professional institutes is on the cards. Regulation of fees is a contentious issue. Do you think fees need to be hiked?...

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