Union Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh has stirred up hornet’s nest claiming that the faculties at the premier Indian Institutes of Technology and Indian Institutes of Management are not of world class. The statement of Jairam, who is an alumnus of IIT, should not be scrapped summarily as it is axiomatic to state about the premier institutes for not making notch on international arena through quality research. However, it is difficult to buy his point that the faculties of the institutes are not at par with international standard. There is no dispute about the merits of the students cracking the entrance test for enrolling in the premier alma maters as also seconded by the Minister, but it is patently true that the students cannot bag stupendous feat and earn formidable respect without erudite guidance and chiseling by teachers. If the students of IITs and IIMs are ruling the roost across the globe, the kudos goes to their teachers who burn midnight oil to catapult them to the international reputation. Actually the problem is the lack of conducive ambience which is required for high quality research. Moreover, students should be motivated to exercise their minds in the research field as they give swashbuckling performance in semester-exams. The teachers of IITs and IIMs can better explain about the hurdles in the way of good research.

It is disappointing that there is a lack of mature reaction on the proposition of Jairam about removal of the bottleneck and enabling the institutes to carry out world class research work. As Science and Technology Minster Kapil Sibal himself disagrees with Jairam, then the problems gripping IITs and IIMs will hardly be dealt with. Undoubtedly, India is and should be proud of such institutes but it is equally significant to upgrade their infrastructure. New IITs and IIMs are being opened but capable teachers are being recruited at snail’s pace. In fact there should be a serious and calibrated review over the quality of education being imparted to the students in the premier institutes after Jairam’s comment. It is significant to discuss about education pattern because there are many engineering and management colleges entrenched in the last few years, but they are lagging behind IITs and IIMs as far as quality of teaching is concerned. Albeit these institutes generate scores of engineers and executives but they do not commensurate with demand. Instead of dissecting Jairam’s comment, it will be better mull over upgrading teaching and infrastructure of IITs and IIMs and other engineering and management colleges as well.