For the benefit of proponents of Merit with regard to social empowerment and affirmative action in India :
The world's second-fastest growing economy does not have an educational institute in the top 200 global list this year.
The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay -- the only Indian varsity that found itself in the Top 200 Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings in 2010 at the number 187 spot -- dropped 38 places to 225. Similarly, IIT Delhi fell to number 218 from 202 in 2010 and IIT Madras dropped to 281 from last year's 262.
The rankings by QS, a leading networking organisation in higher education, are based on employer reputation, academic reputation and research quality.
( a news item in the Rediff.com of September 9)
For the benefit of the Aam-Adami to jugde their elected representatives:
As the 26-day session ended, Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha both reported considerable loss of time to disruptions. Question Hour, the sole instrument that ensures government accountability, remained the biggest casualty as only 1.96 questions could be answered a day against the 19.2 listed in Lok Sabha.
As the Opposition disallowed work targeting the government for corruption, Lokpal issue, Gujarat Governor’s interference in Lokayukta’s appointment and cash-for-vote scam, Lok Sabha lost 45 pc of its scheduled time working for 77 hours out of the listed 138. Rajya Sabha lost 44 pc (57 hours) of time.
On the past lines, Question Hour was the hardest hit and not taken up in Lok Sabha on 16 days. Out of 500 listed questions, only 51 were answered by ministers; that’s 1.96 answers a day. Question Hour performance of this eighth session of 15th Lok Sabha was among the three worst since 2009 - preceded by the sixth session (winter session consumed by 2G Spectrum scam) in which 0.2 questions a day were answered and fifth session in which 1.76 queries were daily answered.
In the Upper House, too, only 65 out of 500 listed queries were answered. That explained Chairman Hamid Ansari’ valedictory address, “It being the monsoon session, the House has lived up to its appellation with stormy proceedings and many matters of public importance remained unattended. This is a sad commentary on the duty of the Members …and calls for introspection.” In Lok Sabha, Speaker Meira Kumar returned the sentiment saying, “I’m sure members are committed to check this tendency...”
(a news item in the Times of India on September 9)