Lately, I have become fond of conspiracy theories, as it is nearly impossible to reconcile with the absurdity that our nation is, without a creative imagination explaining the self-destruction we are engaged in, especially with education.
We start schooling with ma’ams demanding word-to-word answers so that a child inculcates an important value that rote is the only real learning that pays. We consolidate this conditioning by using MCQ-based exams to ensure that knowledge is reduced to context-less mugging of random words. At the end of schooling, we expose the kids to coaching classes culture glorifying “cracking” of exams to ensure that kids are not only devoid of knowledge but also rendered incapable of learning when they pass through the sieve of this well laid-out system.
While the above process is good enough to annihilate learning in general, we endeavour to take self-destruction gloriously forward to cover even the exceptionally talented brains by force-uprooting them from their social context and shifting them to the isolation of walled institutes of excellence like IITs to ensure that their social bonding is ripped apart and their learning has no real use to society.
Looking at the efficiency of the system in place, we will have to admit that no other nation on earth could have done this better.
Today, we are a proud nation harbouring one-fifth of humanity that has virtually nothing to its credit in terms of intellectual contribution in an era where science has moved most rapidly in the history of humanity. So, if this has to make sense, we need a conspiracy theory explaining it.
As a sci-fi fan, I often imagine myself surreptitiously attending a meeting of a galactic council of aliens arranged to review a-bit-too-rapid progress of earthlings.
Eavesdropping in this meeting, I can see that they are worried about the ape’s shift from trees to moon in a really short period, and are looking at ways of slowing humanity down by couple of thousand years.
I can clearly imagine them sitting and debating the issue, only to arrive a simple solution of focusing on India. By destroying Indian education, they get one-fifth of humanity out of the play and dumb down the engine of intellectual progress of humanity. So, it makes perfect sense that our absurd education system is designed by aliens with an agenda!
Though above evidence is enough to form a fairly valid conspiracy theory, there is one more clue that seals the deal for me, and that is removal of biology from engineering education.
Of all insanity, this is the most momentous insanity of our system. Biology is the highest form of engineering, and it is evident that future belongs to bio-engineering domain.
So, removal of biology is a stroke of genius because it has taken us out of the race of the inevitable biotech-driven future. I can almost imagine the glee on the faces of alien committee when someone sitting somewhere in Indian education system thought that engineers have no use learning biology.
Looking at where we are today, using Sherlock Holmes’ logic of eliminating the impossible, and looking at whatever remains, no matter how improbable, to be the truth, I am really tempted to believe in my conspiracy theory of alien intervention, as it is impossible to believe that any nation on earth can do unto itself that we have done to the young brains of our nation.
Personally for me, the bigger tragedy is that our education system is not just keeping the nation poor and backward, it is also robbing some fine young brains from learning about the pleasure of knowing, which I feel is the very purpose of being Homo sapiens.