For the past 26 days, over 100 students (including many women) from DD Medical College have been protesting within the campus of Dr. MGR Medical University campus in Chennai. The students have been left in the lurch following the cancellation of the college license by the Medical Council of India (MCI). The students had been admitted on the pretext that the college was affiliated to Dr. MGR Medical university and also had a proper approval from MCI.
On 14th September, the students tried to form a human chain in front of Dr. MGR Medical University when they were not allowed to enter the campus. The notorious Tamil Nadu police disrupted the protest in its inimical style injuring many students and their parents, and arresting many of them.
Fooled by the management
The issue surrounding DD Medical college is just another instance of the rampant privatization and commercialization of education in India, with minimum regulations or any adherence to any proper standards. In a country were admissions to especially medical colleges is overrated, it is nothing but a case of total exploitation of students by the college managements, with hefty capitation fees and extremely low quality education.
All students belonging to the 2011 & 2012 batch went to Madras High Court to allow them to pursue their education. However, Madras High Court declined their petition citing that the institution is not properly equipped with adequate facilities to conduct the MBBS course. While the student protest has been supported by a few political parties including the CPI, they have very little to offer in terms of pointing out the failures of the privatized education system or giving a sense of direction through solidarity support from students unions etc.
It’s the System, Stupid!
The case of DD Medical College is just the tip of the iceberg and represents a complete failure of the Indian ruling class to provide universal free, quality education. Instead the system has been taken over by con-men and thus making the students highly vulnerable to exploitation with the promise of jobs in MNC’s etc.
In the case of DD Medical college, the college was actually being run without even a proper assessment from the concerned regulatory boards and bribery which is not uncommon in India. It also represents the failure of the so called regulations in managing private institutions and proves that college managements will easily find ways to bypass any laws that come in their way for more and more profit. In fact, private education and its corporate offshoots are the biggest cause of illiteracy in India.
According to Yogendra Yadav, former member of the University Grants Commission (UGC) more than 100 MPs actually “own or run private higher educational institutions” and HRD ministry (that covers education) actually nominated people running private educational institutes to the UGC (responsible for setting educational standards).
Education sector in India is nothing more than a money making racket and is actually seen as a potential market worth Rs 602,410 crore ($109.84 billion) by FY15. With the government spending less than 3.2% GDP on education and deregulation, the demand for the limited number of education seats has never been greater, given that nearly 10% of the Indian population are in the age group of 18-23 years. Higher education is seen by many middle to lower middle income families as a potential gateway to upward social mobility.
The New Socialist Alternative (CWI-India) is in complete solidarity with the students of DD Medical College. We Demand:
- An immediate amnesty for all current students
- No to privatization and commercialization of education
- For an Universal free education system that is wholly publicly owned and democratically controlled by student/ teacher bodies, Trade Unions and the working people.
- Bring the profiteers, who are making the students suffer to books ! An independent inquiry in to the whole fiasco by a committee comprising of Students, Parents ,Student & Teacher Unions and Trade unions