in Gandhian thought can't get jobs (Jan 30 is Mahatma Gandhi's
By Imran Khan
Patna, Jan 29 (IANS) Gandhigiri might be the stuff of blockbuster
movies and the way to holding peaceful protests by the new
generation, but students who have done their masters degree
in Gandhian thought from a Bihar university are finding few
takers in the job market.
Ajit Sinha and Priyaranjan Kumar, both unemployed, are angry
and frustrated men in their late 20s after being jobless despite
having masters degrees in Gandhian thought.
"There are no takers for Gandhian thought in the job
market in Bihar or elsewhere in India," Sinha said.
Kumar said that though US President Barack Obama might have
been inspired by Mahatma Gandhi's philosophy, there were no
jobs for students of Gandhian thought.
"It is a dream for us to get even a teacher's job,"
Sinha and Kumar are two among the hundreds of jobless, who
have done their postgraduation in Gandhian thought from the
Tilka Manjhi Bhagalpur University in the last two and a half
Bhagalpur University was the first in the country to establish
a postgraduate course in Gandhian thought in the 1980s.
Ajit Kumar Thakur, who is in his mid-30s and is a postgraduate
in Gandhian thought, was forced to work as a barber after
he failed to get any other job.
"My degree proved useless and I could not get a job,"
Nearly 1,100 students have completed the course to date, but
many have failed to get a suitable job and some of them have
either been forced to opt for self-employment or have had
to take on other jobs for survival.
"More than 500 students having a masters degree in Gandhian
thought are jobless and tired of running from pillar to post
in search of suitable employment," said Umesh Kumar Niraj
of Gandhi Vichar Manch, a body of present and former students
of Gandhian thought.
Niraj said that in most cases these youths are engaged in
voluntary work or are working with NGOs on a part-time basis.
Prabhu Narayan Mandal, who teaches in the Gandhian thought
department, said that a proposal for starting a postgraduate
level diploma course in management of voluntary organisations
would be sent to the university to ensure proper employment
opportunities for the students of the department.
Sinha said that two years ago the state government had announced
that it would give extra weightage to students of Gandhian
thought while hiring teachers for 391 basic schools.
But nothing has happened till now, Sinha said.
The government had announced that basic schools based on the
Gandhian model, converted into traditional schools earlier,
would be revived for imparting education on the Gandhian model
of learning by doing.
The meeting of the advisory committee constituted for the
purpose is yet to be held.
The basic schools were set up by Mahatma Gandhi in Champaran
district in 1939 to impart basic education to boys and girls
in rural areas.
They were also meant to provide vocational training in spinning,
carpentry, farming, weaving and leatherwork.
A students body comprising degree holders in Gandhian thought
staged a protest in Bhagalpur last week and demanded that
the government create job opportunities for them.
"We will launch an agitation if the government ignores
us any longer," one of the protestors said.
He said that they will adopt the Gandhian mode of protest
to build pressure on the government.
(Imran Khan can be contacted at Imran.firstname.lastname@example.org)
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