There is today a lot of unrest and indiscipline among Students in India. Why so? Well, the world of students is something like a bee-hive. Bees like to produce honey. But honey cannot be produced without juice. Bees move from flower to flower to collect juice. But if they do not get enough of juice, they get angry and sting those who disturb them in their work.
Unrest among Students in India is only an expression of discontent and nothing else. This discontent cannot be cured by what is called Police Method.
In the same way, students are engaged in their studies. But nobody seems to care for their needs. Even their essential needs are not fulfilled. If students are like children, there must be somebody to look after them like their own mother. But what a pity! All our schools and colleges today are very much like step-mothers. The students have every reason to believe that they are neglected. Their feelings and interests are not taken into consideration. They do not have enough to live on. They do not get library facilities. They do not get proper hostel arrangements. Even the courses of studies are not framed to suit their needs and tastes. For instance, they feel they can do better if they are taught through the medium of their own mother tongue. But nobody cares. So, students start crying, as children must do when they feel hungry.
There is yet another kind of unrest among Indian students. Students feel that things are not as they should be. There is a lot of corruption in every walk of life. They cannot be blind and deaf to what goes on around them. How can they remain cut off from society? So, it is but natural for them to take interest in the social, political and economic life of their country. Now, to take active interest in the lives of the people and to voice their feelings is not an act of indiscipline. It only shows that the world of students is alive and alert. But to act under the influence of political parties and to join their violent agitations for political ends is, no doubt, an act of indiscipline. And then the government has a right to deal with the problem as a law and order problem.
In some cases, however, students alone are not responsibilities for indiscipline. Our school and college committees and university bodies have become hot-beds of politics. Most of the members of these committees are politicians. They have to take the help of both students and teachers to gain their ends. There are, again, teacher-pollutions, too. They all encourage indiscipline among students. This type of indiscipline can go only when politicians quit these temples of learning.
There is something wrong with our education system itself. Our schools and colleges aim at manufacturing only job-seekers. They fail to produce good men and women. Education today helps you earn a living. It does not help you learn the art of living well. In other words, it does not try to develop your character. So, our system of education and examination must be changed if we like to drive away the ghost of indiscipline.
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Growing Unrest and indiscipline among students is a matter of great concern. In recent years they have assumed alarming proportions. Student unrest is not confined to India alone. It is a worldwide problem.
There are agitations, strikes, boycotts of classes etc., in schools, colleges, universities and other educational and training institutions now and then. Student unrest is a great threat to our system of education, training programmes and development. The students indulge in violence, arson, destruction of property. They use unfair means to get through the tests and examinations, insult their teachers, threat their invigilators and abuse the staff on any pretext. They want more freedom, rights, both legitimate and illegitimate.
If these undesirable activities and indiscipline are allowed to go on unchecked, the whole education and training system would soon be paralyzed. It would eat into the very vitals of our national ethos and development. This unrest among the students reflects the prevailing dissatisfaction, disillusionment, frustration, dejection and hopelessness. The students are now a frustrated lot; they lack orientation and proper guidance. They feel insecure as far as proper employment opportunities are concerned. They are afflicted with aimlessness, indecision and crisis of character. They don’t have role models to follow on national or regional levels.
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But why do the students clash with the police, indulge in strikes, violence, stone-throwing, brick-bating, rowdies, rampage and drug-abuse? Why do they hero their Vice- chancellors, professors, head of the institutions etc.? Why do they resort to demonstrations and hooliganism again and again? These are some of the very serious and crucial questions and must be addressed and answered with matching concern and seriousness.
The causes of this unrest are not far to seek. There are many factors which have contributed to this dangerous phenomenon. One of the main factors is our out-dated and defective system of education and examination: The prevailing system of education was introduced by the Bruisers with the sole aim of producing clerks and petty bureaucrats to run their administration. The British rulers never wanted to educate the Indians in the real sense of the term. They wanted to perpetuate their rule and the slavery of the Indian masses. This system of education does not cater to our national and social needs. Consequently, the students feel cheated, confused, frustrated and express these in the acts of violence and indiscipline. Similarly, the system of examination is rotten to the very core because of its many inherent defects. It places too much emphasis and premium on cramming, mechanical memory and elements of chance. It promotes such corrupt practices as copying in the examination, leakage of question papers for ulterior motives and payment of gratification to examiners etc. It encourages bookish knowledge and speculation. Examinations are not the real test of student’s achievements, skills and abilities. They do not take into consideration their excellence in co-curricular activities, social service or strength of moral character and conduct.
The student unrest can also tie attributed to the rampant corruption among teachers and other members of .the staff. The teachers are recruited on the basis of their political backing and patronage, and not on the basis of their academic achievements and merits. Appointments made on the basis of caste and political patronages have caused havoc in the field of education. In the matter of admission also these, nasty factors of casteism, nepotism, favoritism and bribery are playing their dirty role. As a result of these the deserving and meritorious students are left out. The ill-recruited, low paid and corrupt teachers have worsened the situation. The teachers themselves often resort to strike, dharma and gears to coerce the authorities to accept their legitimate and illegitimate demands.
The student community is now in ferment which finds its expression in various acts of indiscipline. Modern students may be compared to a kind of Frankenstein who threatens to slay his own mentor and master. Students, by and large, are now a confused and demoralized lot. They have lost sight of direction, proper orientation, moral values, cultural heritage and sense of pride in common historical great achievements.
They are not sure of getting proper employment opportunities after completion of their education and training, and so find their future bleak, uncertain and insecure. What good can be expected from such a frustrated lot? A frustrated young man is always a dangerous man. Ill-equipped libraries and laboratories, overcrowded classes, ill paid staff, lack of job-oriented education, absence of moral and academic authority among teachers etc., have further worsened the situation.
The politicians and party-leaders have added fuel to the fire of student unrest and there is almost a conflagration. They are misusing and misguiding students to serve their own selfish and partisan political ends. These political professionals use the students as their tools and lead them astray. The student of today has become a casualty to all these corrupt, rotten and utterly selfish forces which have intruded the temples of learning.
Students are the real strength and future of a country. They possess vast energy which can do wonders if properly oriented and utilized. They should be kept busy in creative, fruitful, relevant, social and academic activities. Their minds should never be allowed to remain idle. Proper employment opportunities should be created for them and there should be no political interference in- educational matters. The legitimate demands of the student community should be met without any delay. There should be a proper administrative mechanism to redress their genuine grievances these are some of the key remedies for the malady of student unrest and indiscipline. The students form the bedrock of our national health and progress. So, they should be treated accordingly with sympathy, affection and genuine concern for them.