One must feel sorry for Union Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal.
When Sibal became Union HRD minister, he brought a new thrust to the ministry at least on the outset. He talked of expanding the number of education-providers, improving the quality of education, giving autonomy to colleges/universities. But before he could bring in that much-needed change in the education scenario of the country, the party high command thought Sibal’s calculation skills could be better utilised to challenge (even if vaguely) the proficiency of the CAG in the infamous 2G spectrum scam. So, he was given additional charge of Telecom Ministry by Prime Minister manmohan singh (read SONIA GANDHI).
The next we heard from Sibal was not on the issue of providing interest subsidy on educational loans or abolition of Class X board exams. But on how the Comptroller and Auditor-General (CAG) had been ‘utterly erroneous’ in his estimation of a loss of Rs. 1.76 lakh crore in the 2G spectrum allocation.
However, by this time the 2G scam was being investigated by CBI under the supervision of the apex court and A Raja’s involvement in the lapses was almost certain.
Reacting to Sibal’s comment, Supreme Court reprimanded him and asked the Minister to behave with ‘some sense of responsibility’. Sibal’s reply could well have been: I am behaving responsibly. After all, this is the responsibility that I have been assigned – to save Congress’ face in the 2G spectrum scam.
But, Sibal cannot not even do that. That is why we should feel sorry for him.
When CBI arrested A Raja and Kapil Sibal was reminded of his comment that ‘2G allocation had not caused any loss to the country’, the Telecom Minister had nothing to say. He told media persons to ‘go and ask CBI’.
Now when he is asked if he is a reluctant telecom minister, Sibal replies – If the prime minister (read SONIA GANDHI) wants me to do a job, I do it.
Meanwhile, public education system continues to languish. Statistics, that only half the children of Class V can read Class II textbooks, is a shame for any government. We cannot but feel sorry for the public education system.
REMINISCENT NOTE: Excerpts from Rahul Gandhi’s maiden speech in Parliament in 2006 that spun higher education dreams: “I walked to the children in village schools "Beta bade hokar kya bano ge?" The silent stare I got in reply disturbed me. In school after school, I have asked this question and got no answer.
Well.. Mr Rahul Gandhi will go to villages and find out about the rotten education system, only to use the anecdotes to pepper his speech in the Parliament.
Mr Gandhi, may we tell you – your silence is more disturbing than the child who could not answer: Beta bada hokar kya banoge?