Two years after declaring that top educational institutes will get the tag of ‘Institute of Eminence’ (IoE), Modi Government has declared non-existent Jio Institute an Institute Of Eminence.

What Is The IoE?:

The Ministry of Human Resource and Development had set up an Empowered Expert Committee (EEC) with the task of finding 10 private and 10 public institutes which will be given the tag of IoE.

The public institutes with this tag would be given a funding of Rs 1000 crores and all the institutes will have a complete autonomy, generous grants and ability to hire foreign faculty among other special privileges in an attempt to raise their standards to a world-class institution in the coming years.

The institutes are given the tag of IoE in pursuit of increasing their ranking to within top 500 amongst all institutes globally.

Three government institutes: IIT Bombay, IIT Delhi and IISC Banglore and three privately run institutes: BITS Pilani, Manipal Institute and Jio Institute have all received the title of ‘Institute of Eminence’.

Jio Institute Exists, Only In Speech:

Even Google has no idea where Jio Institute is and till date the only reference ever made was in a speech made by Nita Ambani in a media event in March 2018.

Just hours ago JIO Education came into existence, this is after the institute was given the eminence status. Till today afternoon it had no address and no information whatsoever.

They do not even have their own website and the website provided is of Jio telecommunication.

Why BJP Will Gain The Most:

With the 2019 elections coming close, the selection of Jio Institute can be seen as the government cowering to the corporate sector. Narendra Modi has often personally endorsed Jio in the past.

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Political parties need funding for their campaign and with financial bill amendments having already made political party funding opaque, it’s not hard to decipher what the BJP government can gain from this move.

Justifying Jio Institute’s Selection:

The government is trying to clarify the decision of selecting Jio Institute stating that the Jio Institute has been selected through the Greenfield category i.e a category for new or proposed institutes that are yet to come into existence. 11 other applications were submitted and Jio Institute was finalised.

Today, Education Secretary R Subramanyam said that if Jio Institute set up a good campus within three years and fulfil the remaining criteria they will get the IoE status and as of now they only have a letter of intent. This implied that the Jio Institute is yet to qualify.

However, Minister for Human Resource and Development, Prakash Javadekar, tweeted yesterday congratulating Jio Institute for bagging the status of ‘Institute of Eminence’ along with Manipal University and BITS Pilani.

A Biased Selection Overall:

Barring Jio Institute, the other two private institutes, Manipal University and BITS Pilani have been ranked 18th and 26th respectively by MHRD’s own National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) scores. Ignoring the other private institutes which have ranked higher than them.

Even the selection of only 5 existing colleges and 1 non-existing college out of the proposed 20 is awful. The EEC has cited weak teaching and poor research for selection of only 6 colleges.

The intention of government might have been good provided that not many people except the Ambanis can afford to build a world-class institute within 3 years. However, there is no denying that the decisions made are biased.

Let’s hope that at least these 6 institutes will make a mark for India in the education sector globally.


Image Credits: Google Images

Sources: The Wire, NDTV, Times Of India + more


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