It all started with tweets from Madhu Kishwar and Congress spokesman Ajay Makhen, questioning her competence to head the education ministry. And, it backfired, with a barrage of countertweets. Columnist Swapan Dasgupta said: “Someone remind me. Did Rabindranath Tagore go to university? He certainly established one & had enlightened views on education.’’ Jammu and Kashmir CM Omar Abdullah tweeted: "To say that someone needs to be educated to be HRD Min is like saying one needs to be a pilot for Civil Aviation or a miner for Coal Min".
I wonder when did educational qualification become an imperative to join politics or to become a minister. Not just in politics, elsewhere too everyone is looking beyond degrees. We have infinite examples of under-qualified people doing well, and well-qualified people under-performing.
Let her do her job
As a minister, Smriti and others are more of managers and leaders. What she needs is a good set of advisers. And she should have the will to push the policies that are good for the teachers and the taught, and generally for the educational setup of our country. And for all that, a PhD or an MSc or an MBA is hardly required. In fact, a highly qualified person may prove to be a disadvantage, since he or she won't be able to look beyond his or her field of specialization. Such people very often have a constricted view, while a minister of education of the country should have a very broad view.
Let Smriti be allowed to do her job. If she has come this far, she must be smart enough to figure her way ahead too. If we need to criticize, let us do that for her omissions and commissions as a minister.
(Picture credit: The Hindu)