Formerly known as Ministry of Human Resource Development, the Ministry of Education (MoE) is saddled up with the delicate task of reforming the education sector of India and ensuring that the country produces the brightest, and at the same time, aware students.
An education minister is thus required to be on the top of her/his game through and through. However, over the course of last 75 years, ever since the inauguration of first Education Minister, our schooling and higher education system have been dismantled by incompetent leaders. Inundated with generous coating of left-liberal, Macaulay style of teaching, the students have been programmed to believe an alternate history.
While successive Congress regimes continued to toe the same line, the BJP has fared no better in trying to correct the wrong. So, in no particular order, here is list of top-5 worst education ministers of India.
The birthday of Abul Kalam Azad, the former education minister of India, is celebrated as the National Education Day in India. Born on November 11, 1888, in Mecca as Abul Kalam Azad, he was popularly known as Maulana Azad given his religious learning. Azad was appointed as the first education minister of India by Prime Minister Nehru, and occupied the post till his death in 1958.
Azad is graced with the achievement of bringing the colonial, Marxist, and Nehruvian biases that we continue to see, even today in our textbooks. Maulana Azad laid the foundation for the ‘secularization’ of Indian history and social sciences, and positioned the Marxist professors and bureaucrats in all important government posts.
The intellectuals with contrary views were purged; as there was a very limited private sector, the government patronage to the left made it a dominant force in academia.
Maulana was not known as Maulana just because he was well-educated, but also due to his Islamist leaning and his idea of Muslims and pan-national community.
Supporting the Khilafat Movement, he had remarked, “If even a grain of the soul of Islam is alive among its followers, then I should say that if a thorn gets stuck in a Turk’s sole in the battlefield of war, then I swear by the God of Islam, no Muslim of India can be a Muslim until he feels that prick in his heart instead of sole because the Millat-e-Islam (the global Muslim community) is a single body,”
If India does want to celebrate National Education Day, it should be on the day of Saraswati Puja rather than on the birthday of an Islamist who made a mockery of the ancient Indian education system and burdened our textbooks with colonial, Marxist, and Nehruvian biases.
A UPA-era leader whose tenure was marred by one controversy after another, is mostly remembered for bringing the controversial ‘Four year Undergraduate program’ (FYUP) for Delhi university.
The FYUP, which was part of the former HRD minister’s aggressive reform agenda for higher education in India, was widely criticised for the hurried manner in which it was pushed through by the Delhi University (DU).
The project was doomed to fail from the beginning, as some teachers and student-organizations had been protesting against the four-year course since December 2012. Moreover, according to sources, when the program was mooted for the first time in a meeting in 2012, six members of the Academic Council (AC) had protested vehemently against it.
Sibal, during his tenure, also drew widespread flak for the amendments to the Right to Education Act (RTE), which introduced the No Detention Policy (NDP) in 2009.
As a direct consequence of the ill-planned move, schools in the distant regions of the country, already struggling with the infrastructure and faculty, started to give the examinations a miss, thinking that the students will not be failed.
Moreover, it created a culture where mediocrity was rewarded and students took their grades for granted. It’s one thing to promote learning instead of rote memorization, but it shouldn’t come at the cost of hard work, merit, and real skill – something which Kapil Sibal couldn’t understand.
Made the Education Minister during the P.V. Narasimha Rao government, Arjun Singh had three turbulent years in the office where he took one bad decision after another. Singh is perhaps infamously known for his incessant interference in the functioning of the premier institutes of the country viz. the IITs and IIMs.
Moreover, instead of batting for reforms, which became a pivotal keyword in Narasimha Rao’s tenure, Singh appeared more interested in pushing the 27% OBC reservation quota, despite stiff opposition from a vocal section of students and academicians.
Singh made Fulbright scholars wait 6 to 21 months for clearances and pushed through appointments of Vice Chancellors to 15 new central varsities before the model code of conduct came into effect.
One of the most recent ministers to hold the post, Prakash Javadekar held the post in NDA-1 from July 5 2016 to May 30, 2019. Perhaps not the sharpest tool in the shed, Prakash Javadekar, quizzically prided himself on not changing a single word in the obviously left-written textbooks of the country.
“We have not rewritten a single chapter in the last four years.” He had remarked. However, what showed Javadekar’s true inability to lead the ministry was the fact that he believed that he could circumvent the left-teaching of the textbooks and somehow correct it through direct conversation.
He said, “We don’t need to go to textbook to expand our philosophy. We do that by directly going to people and having a direct conversation with them. We don’t have to use textbook syllabus to spread our philosophy,”
Safe to say, a majority of supporters of the current disposition are angry at the Modi government and its ministers, for remaining dormant in changing the curriculum.
It’s been more than 7 years and yet the government appears passive and reluctant to change what is obviously a biased and narrow point of view of events being taught to students across the country.
Saiyid Nurul Hasan:
After Indira Gandhi got the support of CPI in 1969 to save her government from the Congress (syndicate), Hasan gave the control of academia to the communist parties, who appointed card-carrying members of the party in the university.
Indira Gandhi’s government took a sharp leftward turn, and to justify her deeds, she prepared an army of ‘intellectuals’ who would prepare an intellectual argument in support of her excesses.
In 1972, she appointed Saiyid Nurul Hasan as the HRD minister, and he appointed Marxist professors in universities like Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU). In all government universities like AMU, BHU, JNU and other institutions alike, the Marxist professors were appointed in the social sciences departments.
The strong left orientation of Indian intellectual professions- academia, media, and writing, is due to state patronage to them by the successive Congress governments, with Saiyid Nurul Hasan generously upholding the glorious Congress tradition.