28-Apr-2006

A Different View Of L'affaire Kaavya

Here from an American blogger. Notice the title of post : Meritocracy. And note this:
...she was able to pay $20,000 for a college counselor who put her into contact with a publisher. In short, she was lucky enough to be able to pay for connections.
I will let this commenter balance that out:
Wait a damn minute - we have nothing to go on except the story and the money to say she or anyone else did not work hard. You don't know that she didn't and to assume she didn't because she has parents with money is - well, - prejudiced.

I don't know what happened except what I've read and the girl could not be more apologetic over the purported plagiarism.
But it still doesn't make a bee in my bonnet go away, a bee that sneaked in as I watcheda news segment on CNN-IBN about the student protests against reservation. One student had this to say, paraphrasing completely:
a person who gets into an medical course through the reservation quota will not be able to learn all that well, since he will not have the skills for it. So what kind of doctors will we produce with this policy of reservation?
Fair point. But the same argument could be made against the system of getting seats in private engineering and medical colleges based on paying power. So why is it not made so vigorously? And isn't it also true that the student who fails to measure up won't pass his exams and thus will not be able to practice?

On a different note, how many of these students who get subsidised education and free experience in government institutions end up serving in the villages where the real need is? And how many end up with fat practices in the cities or abroad? We already know where the IIM graduates end up. Who do the doctors serve?

Update: Read the other side of the story, strongly put, here. Why indeed?

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