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Indianizing Education

I was at the ThinkE­du Con­clave recent­ly. The main theme of the con­clave was “Indi­an­iz­ing Edu­ca­tion”. It was heart­en­ing to see many peo­ple in promi­nent posi­tions in the Indi­an soci­ety tak­ing inter­est and effort in set­ting the right vision for edu­ca­tion in India. I had a chance to ask a ques­tion to Hon­or­able Min­is­ter Smri­ti Irani Ji and she did have a point when she shared that indi­vid­u­als and com­mit­ted insti­tu­tions have a cen­tral role to play in Indi­an­iz­ing edu­ca­tion. With the cur­rent debates going on in the coun­try, “Indi­an­iz­ing” is being mis­un­der­stood as “Saf­froniz­ing” (which in itself isn’t bad, but the word has been used so many times with a cer­tain con­no­ta­tion that it has tak­en a com­plete­ly new mean­ing now).

What we mean by Indi­an­iz­ing edu­ca­tion?

Many peo­ple have start­ed observ­ing that the edu­ca­tion that they received in school or col­lege did not help to strength­en their bond with India. Infact many peo­ple feel dis­tanced. Edu­ca­tion has failed to cre­ate an appre­ci­a­tion for tra­di­tion­al and indige­nous prac­tices, so much so that any­thing tra­di­tion­al is being viewed as super­sti­tion. Those who want to strength­en their roots feel a dearth of for­mal chan­nels in main­stream edu­ca­tion­al insti­tu­tions.

We are a part of a rich cul­ture and if edu­ca­tion alien­ates us from the same, there is some­thing seri­ous­ly wrong. When we say we need to Indi­an­ize edu­ca­tion, we mean that we need to cre­ate and offer con­tent that is rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Indi­an ethos, mind­set, prac­tices and her­itage. That way, the solu­tions that we evolve for prob­lems in our soci­ety will be more suit­able to our land. We won’t be out­siders to our own peo­ple. Edu­ca­tion that leads to a bet­ter bond­ing with the moth­er­land is a need of the hour.

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