Edu, Job Issues Agitating Youth
Mumbai: The backbone of the ‘silent rallies’ of the Marathas has been the youth, and the common refrain appears to be the same — lack of education and jobs. “I secured 74% but couldn’t get admission in a college of my choice, while students who got much less got admission in good col- leges in Pune because they belong to a particular community. What’s my crime?” asked Baliram Madan, an 18-year-old from Jalna, which is almost 400 km from Mumbai.
Baliram said he too wanted to get into a college in Pune to study mechanical engineering, but said the management quota seat was going for ₹ 1.20 lakh. “My father is a farmer, and our yearly income is ₹ 60,000 – how can I get the money?” said Baliram, adding that he has been forced to take admission in a college in Aurangabad where he ‘learns nothing’, so there’s little chance of him getting a job. His friend Tukaram Madan (23) from the same village said that he wanted to pursue higher studies to fulfill his ambition of getting into Maharashtra civil services, but dropped out once he realised that he was not getting admission in colleges. “I have decided to go for a job in the police and have been training for it — this is not ideal for me, but this is my only option,” said Tukaram.
Suresh Sureshe (19), who had come from Jalna, said that he wanted to study science after the 10th standard, but couldn’t get admission in science stream due to lack of seats. “I wanted to buy a seat, but didn’t have the money to do so. Instead, I am studying arts.”
In fact, the anger from the rural areas has now spilled on to the cities as was evident in the case of Amarkant Budhe (25), who lives in Borivili. He said that he came for the rally because he wanted a government job. “We want reservation in education and government jobs, we want the same opportunity like others — why should we lose out?”