Delinking Degrees from Jobs
The proposal of delinking degrees from jobs is not new. The Public Service Committee reported in 1956 that the degree qualification should be abolished for clerical jobs and for the appointment in the posts of junior officers. The National Committee on the educational structure (10+2+3) also wanted the Government of India to delink degrees from jobs. The National Institute of Educational Planning and Administration (NIEPA) also expressed this view in 1982.
Various arguments are put forward to delink degrees from jobs. Those who support it argue that today’s education is not job-oriented and that the knowledge the students acquire is not useful to them in practical life. The best way is to have job-oriented courses and SSC. Degrees and marks are not the real measurements of learning and intelligence. Students having no thorough knowledge of their subjects get through with good marks. There are many intelligent young men and women who cannot pursue higher -education because of pecuniary difficulties. Since degrees are indispensable to many jobs, young men and women rush to colleges. This reduces the standard of education and efficient functioning of colleges. The ability of the candidate alone should determine his future and not degree. If the proposed delinking is down, the pressure in the field of higher education can be reduced and the universities can serve better candidates.
There are also argument against the delinking. If it is introduced, it will result in suppressing the poor and lower middle classes, who get their knowledge of different subjects only in colleges. The children from these classes will find themselves in a tight corner. ‘College education will become useless in the eyes of students and it will intensify the present unrest among the youth. It is at the graduate and post-graduate level that a young man or a woman begins to think for himself or herself, or feels capable of thinking. The delinking will expedite the rush for employment from a very early stage. It will affect the efficiency of the civil service. One who has been under the care and guidance of many intellectuals for three or five years in a college or a university can fare better than one who passed SSC and one who has passed a test conducted by a Public Services Commission or by some other recruiting agency.
After examining the pros and cons of the question, we come to the conclusion that a graduate or a post-graduate will be much More efficient either as a clerk or as a junior officer than one who has passed SSC. Lately,the business to be transacted in most of the government offices has increased considerably: Clerical work is not a child’s play. A clerk has to study many orders, Acts, rules and procedure. He has to work with expedition and promptness. The efficiency of a government office depends on the efficiency of the clerks working there. The training a graduate or a postgraduate has received helps him greatly in the efficient discharge of his duties. The university education he has had “prepares him to fill any post with credit and to master any subject with facility”. At present a boy or a girl who has passed SSC in the first division does not know how to write a letter in English without errors. If the persons who have passed SSC alone are appointed in government service, there will be inordinate delay in the disposal of files. We, therefore, think that the proposed delinking is not prudent.