The Hitavada - - THE OPINION PAGE -


SU LAB H In­ter­na­tional is a liv­ing ex­am­ple of how an NGO can change the lives of the peo­ple if it works with ded­i­ca­tion and fo­cus. Cam­paign for build­ing toi­lets in each home was launched by the Govern­ment re­cently. But Mr. Bin­desh­war Pathak has been con­struct­ing pub­lic toi­lets known as Su­labh Shoucha­lay, in cities across the coun­try for the last sev­eral years. The Su­labh In­ter­na­tional has now grown into one of the big­gest NGOs in the coun­try. Pres­i­dent Mr. Ram Nath Kovind, who pre­sented an award to Mr. Pathak for his im­mense con­tri­bu­tion to the so­ci­ety, was right in lav­ish­ing praise on him. While toi­let in ev­ery home is es­sen­tial, clean pub­lic toi­lets are also equally nec­es­sary. How­ever, not enough at­ten­tion was paid to this ba­sic need, caus­ing im­mense in­con­ve­nience to the peo­ple, par­tic­u­larly the women step­ping out of their homes. And the less said the bet­ter about the pitiable con­di­tion of pub­lic toi­lets. Mr. Pathak has set an ex­am­ple on how to man­age pub­lic toi­lets. It would be bet­ter if more NGOs and cor­po­rate houses join him in the toi­let mis­sion.


THAT the Cen­tre has raised the pay pack­ages of teach­ing com­mu­nity in the higher ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor, is wel­come. This is in ac­cor­dance with the rec­om­men­da­tions of the sev­enth pay com­mis­sion re­cently an­nounced for the Cen­tral staff. In of­fer­ing higher pay scales the Govern­ment is keen on at­tract­ing and re­tain­ing qual­ity teach­ing skills for im­prov­ing the stan­dard in higher ed­u­ca­tion. Such at­trac­tive pack­ages, no doubt, are needed for im­prove­ment in the aca­demic stan­dards. But much more is needed for achiev­ing the de­sired re­sults. While Govern­ment-funded ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions may be pay­ing full scales of salaries, the story is very dif­fer­ent in the pri­vate ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions where the teach­ing staff rarely gets the man­dated pack­ages. They have to make do with what­ever the pri­vate man­age­ments dole out. This is one de­ter­rent for at­tract­ing and re­tain­ing qual­ity aca­demic tal­ent to the teach­ing pro­fes­sion. Be­sides there is no schol­ar­ship in the pre­vail­ing ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem. That needs to be taken care of, first and fore­most.

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