Why do Indians do better abroad than in India?

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Why do Indians do better abroad than in India?

Saturday, 02 March 2024 | Radhika Shrivastava

Why do Indians do better abroad than in India?

The root cause of this paradox can be attributed to the lamentable state of public education in the country

Regarding global achievements, Indians have left an indelible mark across diverse fields, from technology and entrepreneurship to academia and healthcare. Yet, an intriguing paradox persists – why do Indians often find unparalleled success on foreign lands but encounter unique challenges within their homeland? This thought-provoking question demands immediate attention and the exploration of the multifaceted challenges.

Why do Indian minds shine bright internationally, but systemic deficiencies mar the domestic educational landscape?

Well, there lies a critical anomaly – the failure to replicate this success on home soil is primarily due to the state of public education. The EW story “Why Indians Succeed Everywhere Except in India” adeptly dissects the paradox of Indian success on the global stage against a backdrop of domestic struggles, attributing this paradox to the unfortunate state of public education, which is accurate.

Education and Governance:

Thought leaders underscore the symbiotic relationship between the quality of education and the overarching progress of the nation. Recognizing education as a catalyst for effective governance and economic prosperity, it is crucial to position education at the forefront of national development strategies.

The Crisis in Primary and Secondary Education

One cannot help but ponder the intricacies of the connection between education and our nation's destiny. If education is the bedrock upon which a society is built, then what does the current state of our primary and secondary say about the trajectory of the world's largest democracy? The ASER surveys unveil a stark truth – a significant portion of our youth lacks even the basic skills expected at their grade level.

It's not just about rote learning or lack of infrastructure; it's a systemic failure that threatens the very foundation of our future. Yet, as we traverse the proposed solutions and underlying assumptions, a more discerning response is required to navigate the intricacies with utmost scrutiny.

Higher Education: A Crisis of Quality

You throw that graduation cap in the air, but does it open doors to a world of opportunities? India is tackling the woes of higher education – the mismatch between degrees and employability. What's the deal with most engineering, arts, science, and commerce graduates being deemed unemployable?

It's time to question the very essence of what higher education institutions are delivering and whether they're preparing graduates for the dynamic job market. The portrayal of India's higher education system is a sad reflection of the systemic challenges faced by graduates and the subsequent migration of talent abroad.

The Brain Drain Dilemma:

While we proudly export our talent to foreign shores, the numbers reveal a disconcerting truth – a drain on our intellectual capital that could have been harnessed for national growth. Is it a necessary sacrifice or a symptom of deeper issues within our educational framework?

A thought-provoking analysis probes the migration patterns of Indian graduates and school leavers to foreign shores, challenging the conventional narrative of brain drain.  Balancing the discourse on brain drain by acknowledging the positive impact of the diaspora would bring a more nuanced perspective to the debate.

A Vision for Change: A Unified Call to Action

The portrayal of the emigration of skilled individuals as a loss for India is correct. While the emigration of skilled individuals is sometimes portrayed as a positive development, the reality is that India loses out on valuable talent. India needs a detailed program to reverse this trend, attract exceptional scientists and researchers back home, and invest more in R&D.

(The writer is an educator; views are personal)

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