Exactly a century ago, an educationist sage; Bharat-Ratna Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya dreamt of establishing an institution of his dream to get millions of the fellow countrymen mired in poverty out of it through the power of education and knowledge. The result was a banyan of knowledge ecosystem under the name Banaras Hindu University (BHU). He travelled the length & breadth of this great nation on literally a “Bhikshatana” to gather resources required to build his institution.
100 years down the line, the most unworthy of persons like me endeavours to follow his path in form School of Innovation & Management (SIM).
The idea of SIM germinated almost a decade ago when I was still in college to complete my graduation while struggling through the present discrminating and highly commercialized Macaulay’s education system who once said “India educated is problem”. Even after securing admission in a top-notch central government college, I had to run from pillar to post for an educational loan to contnue my studies but my loan application was turned down by all the banks. Reason? Even if you seek a loan below 4 lakhs where you don’t require to give a collateral to the bank (which is, by the way far, less than the required average expenditure in management college), banks only give you a loan after evaluating the repaying capacity of the parents/ guardians. They demanded either a salary slip or an ITR of my parents. Well, in India a farmer has neither, so I couldn’t provide any such document. Working in the nights in a BPO to fund my education while attending classes in daytime (with considerable loss of attendence, of course) I dreamt of creating an Institution that would be virtually free, following the verse of RigVeda “Aa Nau Bhadra Kratvau Yantu Vishwatah” meaning “Let the noble thoughts/ knowledge be free and flowing from all directions”
The country which was once the “Vishwa-Guru” and was the free-flowing repository of education & world-knowledge system, is unfortunately at present, mired in a highly discrminating, materialistically attached and non-inclusive under a veil a elitism and pseudo-intellectualism Western approach. The selective elitist approach of the present Indian Education System, right from primary to higher education which makes quality & affordable education almost completely out of reach for over 90% of the Indians is actually still fulfilling the vision of Macaulay who wanted to keep us uneducated and detached from our roots. Our country became independent (politically) 70 years ago, but our education system still thrives in a complete colonial construct & mindset. For instance, if we just take management education scenario, the average cost of MBA in India is INR 0.8 to 1 million which is 10 times the per-capita income. While MBA in institute like IIMs cost around 2.4 million, a staggering 30 times of the per-capita income of India. Compare it to a situation in USA; the average MBA cost around 28 thousand US-dollars, which is just half of the US per-capita income. Even MBA in university like Harvard which is considered to be the costliest management program internationally cost 160 thousand US-dollars, less than 3 times their per-capita income! I am of strong opinion that a country can not grow towards a Knowledge-Economy and become a developed nation if the a quality education takes away your decades of earnings. In no scenario, the cost of education should be more than 3 times of the per-capita income, else it become highly exclusive, less-yielding and keeps the nation poorly educated at large.
The School of Innovation & Management is an answer to such system that unfortunately prevails in India, is an answer to the million aspiring minds who have all but financial resources to pursue their dreams. I assure you that in a matter of a few years SIM will become a great institution, first of its kind Fee-less institute on this planet, imparting world class managment education and knowledge system to the deserving scholars where the only thing you need to get admission into is your talent, nothing else.
Let me assure you further, that this is just a begining, for I endeavour to change the whole Indian education system, and if I have my way with the support of the fellow citizens and the governments, in less than a decade, this can be well achieved; making India a truly knowledge economy. Aimed to be in the league of institutions like IIM’s and HBS in near future, the SIM is undoubtedly the first step towards this revolution.
Come, join us to bring the sorely needed changes, and to create future leaders through SIM to continue the movement, in the economy and in the society.
Sumit Verma, simedu.in