Edit & Opinion

Building national character

Pedagogically there are many agencies which impart formal and non-formal education to the child after birth, but among all, family, society ( neighbors ) and the school play a major role in educating and shaping the character of the child which go a long way in making him an ideal citizen and an asset for the country he lives in.

The child gets his first lesson in love, affection, sacrifice, and obedience in the lap of the mother at home because family is called the cradle of the society from where he imbibes the values the family believes in. The society broadens his mental horizon and teaches him a sense of cooperation interdependence and joint responsibility.

School being the formal agency of education ensures his multi-dimensional development. The curriculum does not only look into the scholastic aspect but cares for the non-scholastic aspect of the child also. The curriculum of the school presents a blueprint of the school activities for the child. Where curricular activities equip him with the knowledge and understanding the co-curricular activities shape his character inculcate the values of, discipline, truth, and honesty through morning assemblies, games, sports,  and moral lessons. But, to the utter dissatisfaction of the nation, none of the agencies have been successful in shaping the national character and inculcating national values in the youth up to the desired level even after seventy years of Independence.

After independence, the education sector did not get the kind of attention that it deserved because there was neither any road map nor any curriculum available at that time. It was only Thomas Babington Macaulay whose education policy was adapted for the citizens of free India. Macaulay stressed upon the introduction of English in the Indian schools with the aim to anglicize the Indians to serve as a link between Indians and the Britishers. Macaulay regarded the learned persons of Sanskrit, Arabic and other Indian languages as ignorant while the learned persons in India were great fools in his opinion.

It is amazing that a country like India could not evolve its own education policy emphasizing the need for inculcating the Indian values based upon the religious teachings from the epics, ancient and freedom struggle history of India,  and its cultural heritage. It is said that Lord Macaulay, whose education policy is still in vogue in the country is known both as the founder and destroyer of Indian education. According to the data from the UGC website, there are789 universities, 37204 colleges, 11443 standard college institutions in India. But as the ill-luck would have it the number of the youth passing out from these institutions are exhibiting the behavior detrimental for the integrity and solidarity of the country.

In the absence of any modal national curriculum in the country, the political parties and their allies in the government tailored their own curriculums best suiting to their hidden political agenda, ambitions and selfish motives. Keeping their eyes on the long-range political benefits the parties ruling the county introduced those text books in the schools and colleges which were biased in nature and which contained mutilated facts about the ancient history of India and the history of India’s freedom struggle whereby projecting and glorifying a particular political party, particular family and a particular community in the country. The ruling parties accorded hidden autonomy to the educational institutions for minorities functioning under article 30 of Indian constitution and gave them a free hand to function the way their clerics want and preach whatever they liked with the assurance that these schools and institutions will have to stand in good stead whenever these parties needed their support.

The nation has been feeling the heat of the unwanted, unexpected and antinational behavior of some sections of society,  youth coming out of the colleges and universities, political leaders having taken oath of the constitutions dozens of time, designer print and the electronic media and the so-called intelligentsia of the country have been sparing no efforts in increasing and aggravating the difficulties of their own country by making the scathing attacks on all the democratic institutions of the country.

Abusing and using vulgar language against the prime minister Presidents and chief justices of India, burning their effigies and beating their photos by the shoes in the public. The nation feels annoyed when the small children of three or four shout slogans against India and talks about freedom and killing the prime minister.

Waiving the tricolor amidst the slogans of freedom and revolution in the country, manhandling the police and security forces on the highways, torching the houses and the public property in the broad daylight, rendering moral support to the agenda of the hostile countries, joining the tukde tukde gang, celebrating martyrdom of Afzal Guru, Mohd. Kasab, Burhan Bani by the students of some universities of the country, disrespecting the national symbols, non cooperation with the agencies providing relief to the corona affected citizens of the country has become a fashion and craze for the youth irrespective of the community they belong to.

The press and the paid TV channels, instead of coming for the help of the government are adding fuel to the fire of haltered and terrorism at the instance of their mentors sitting outside the country. The provocative and abusive way of the panelists comprising of leaders of national political parties of the country, religious leaders, renowned lawyers of the country look as if they are committed to collapse the elected government of the country by lock stock and barrel.

The time has come to take the matter of shaping the character of the nation seriously which conforms to the national expectations. It is therefore suggested to;

  1. Evolve a national curriculum and roadmap which can help inculcate national values among the children.
  2. There should be a provision of screening 10 minute film, , based upon the lives of great Indian saints, thinkers, reformers, heros of freedom struggle, importance of the national symbols, after singing national anthem in the morning assembly.
  3. The photos of the freedom fighters and national leaders be displayed in the corridor along the way students go back to their respective classrooms after morning assembly so that they can pay their tributes to the heroes daily.
  4. Like in the past sixties the services of the retired personals from army, security forces be utilized in the educational institutes so that strict adherence to the disciplinary values among the students can be assured.
  5. Periodical sermons from the clerics be organized in the schools.
  6. Celebration of the functions in the schools to take stock and assess the quantum of the national values inculcated and change in the character of the students.
  7. Organizing the Competition on the paragraph and poem writings based upon the lives of national leaders freedom fighters and Indian saints.
  8. It should be made obligatory that the front and bake page of their notebooks should have the photos of tricolor and the map of India respectively.
  9. A national song should invariably be sung in a chorus daily before they leave the school daily.

These are some remedial measures which if adopted can help to foster national values among the children of the country to some extent.

 

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