With the IIT JOINT ENTRANCE EXAM (IIT JEE) results being declared a few days ago, the national media has once again followed the beaten track of extolling the virtues of the JEE and heaping encomiums on the achievers who have made it to the merit list. In the process, a critical analysis of the true research and teaching standards prevailing in these elite Indian institutes has been bypassed and the larger picture why India is still a nation of mediocre imitators in science and technology and in every other field has been completely masked.
A revealing comment in this regard has been made by a 2009 IIT JEE chairman (The Times of India, May 26,"Rote learning is not the path to success") in why he explicitly says that given the flawed approach adopted by JEE aspirants in mastering scientific concepts by solving numerous "unnatural" and "undeserving complex problems" kills their creativity and that it's as such not at all surprising that the IITs and other Indian institutes have failed to produce "true innovators in science and technology".
The Indian media and population that have a common natural inclination of giving into a sense of false pride and hollow boast over ordinary achievements have ignored the news of India 's rapid decline in areas of quality research in which it had a minuscule presence in the past. Almost everything here is based on imitation of research work done abroad or direct import of technology that is then shoddily applied in the Indian context. Besides, it is a matter of shame that not a single Indian product ranks in the top 100 list of international products where originality or quality is concerned while Indian specialists working abroad are mostly into routine jobs despite all the hype surrounding the so-called successes of these techno-coolies.
Even tiny nations like Israel , Norway , Finland and South Korea are way ahead of India in scientific research, development of new products and quality control with the gap increasing with each passing year as Indians remain immersed in illusory ideas of the "greatness" of their intellectual capacity and baseless boasting about the "superiority" of their academic and research institutes.
Dr A K Isaacs
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