Who Is Responsible for Crimes and Corruption in Delhi Schools?

Students of a Government School in Delhi Cross High Walls and Barbed Wires to Abscond from the School. Photo of February 2017 by Rakesh Raman
Students of a Government School in Delhi Cross High Walls and Barbed Wires to Abscond from the School. Photo of February 2017 by Rakesh Raman

As teachers fail to provide proper education to students, they lose respect and become victims of students’ anger and misbehaviour.

By Rakesh Raman

While the government bosses are sitting as mute spectators, the schools in Delhi have become sanctuaries of crimes and corruption.

Today, in fact, the education standard in all parts of India is in a deplorable state, which is reflected in the country’s Human Development Index (HDI) that totters at a poor rank of 130 in the world.

Also, the Draft National Education Policy, 2016 released by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD), Government of India, has highlighted numerous flaws in the existing education ecosystem of India.

However, the focus of this report is on the sorry plight of school education in India’s capital New Delhi. Instead of imparting the right moral and academic education to students, the Delhi schools are responsible for producing future criminals in the country which is already facing the threat of social unrest.

False Claims

The trouble gets exacerbated when the Delhi government headed by chief minister Arvind Kejriwal pats on its own back with the claims – which are false – of improving the quality of school education.

The Kejriwal government has only been trying to add more classrooms in the schools without realizing the fact that a school is not about brick-and-mortar rooms, but a room becomes a school only with the quality of education in it. The government must realize that the right education can be provided by holding classes even under trees.

However, it is not only the Kejriwal clique that has failed to reform the school education, but the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) is also equally notorious in this domain. The MCD schools are also in a bad shape.

Although the office of the Lieutenant Governor (LG) of Delhi is supposed to manage different departments – including education – of the city, it is a slow bureaucratic setup which believes only in pushing papers from one place to another like a post office. The LG office has also ignored the school education.

[ Education Dilemma: Let Us Save the Lives of Our School Children ]

Moreover, Kejriwal’s politician friends and bureaucrats in the education department who are supposed to ensure improved quality of education are clueless about the evolving education paradigm. So, they are not able to deliver the right services; while bureaucratic inefficiency is the worst form of corruption.

Unqualified Teachers

At present, besides private schools, there are nearly 5,800 government schools in Delhi that have nearly 4.5 million students for primary and secondary education. But these are only numbers that conceal more than what they reveal.

Students of a Delhi School Who Fail to Get the Right Education to Build Their Lives and Careers. Photo by Rakesh Raman
Students of a Delhi School Who Fail to Get the Right Education to Build Their Lives and Careers. Photo by Rakesh Raman

These schools do not impart any education that could help make a child employable in the cutthroat job market. The education continues to be equally bad in government as well as private schools, because school teachers are not qualified enough to understand the fast-changing requirements of the modern business world.

As an experiment, if you ask the teachers in these schools to appear for a properly designed test in their own subjects, 9 out of every 10 teachers will fail. You can try it without any hesitation.

[ Also Read: 10 Steps to Save Education in the Schools of Delhi ]

As they are not accountable, teachers shirk work and keep gossiping with each other in schools while students suffer. As a result, most students stop going to school or they bunk classes even by crossing high barbed wires (see picture at the top of this article) which can hurt them. School attendance registers dishonestly show such absconding students as present in the class.

But school teachers and principals are so careless that they do not want to stop this absenteeism menace. They are only interested to grab their monthly pay packets.

In order to show better performance of their schools, teachers also allow mass copying in schools. These teachers must be thrown out of their jobs under corruption charges because dereliction of duties is also a serious form of corruption.

[ Related Article: Can Government Check Corruption in Delhi Housing Societies? ]

Threat of Private Tuitions

Since teachers’ own knowledge about the subjects is almost nil, they are not able to teach students properly and ask them to attend private tuitions which are spreading like a disease in Delhi.

If students – in private as well as government schools – have to learn by paying extra money to private teaching shops, why should teachers be paid their salaries? Moreover, there is a possibility of an immoral nexus between corrupt school teachers and private teaching shops.

As private tutors fleece the students and their parents, there is no proactive attempt by the government to stop this growing menace, although as a rule the government prohibits private tuitions. It is a crime by school teachers to allow students to undergo paid private classes instead of teaching them in schools.

[ क्या आप भी अपने बच्चों की पढ़ाई को लेकर परेशान हैं? ]

Moreover, by allowing private tuitions, the government is wasting taxpayers’ money because the money being spent on schools and school teachers is not producing the desired results, as the students keep going to the grey, informal education market.

A Government School in Delhi Which Is Mere a Building Without Proper Education. Photo by Rakesh Raman
A Government School in Delhi Which Is Mere a Building Without Proper Education. Photo by Rakesh Raman

Delhi government, for example, has an annual education budget of over Rs. 10,000 crore (approximately US$ 1.5 billion), which is nearly 25% of the total budget allocation. If this money is being spent on infrastructure and teachers’ salaries and students are going to private tuitions, why is the government wasting this money? Isn’t it an immoral and corrupt act which amounts to cheating the taxpayers?

Criminal Activities in Schools

As if that were not enough, now all sorts of brutal crimes are happening in Delhi schools. Teen-aged students frequently indulge in violent brawls among themselves and also with their teachers.

New reports suggest that police receive on average about 20 complaints daily of fights between Delhi school student gangs and students’ attacks on teachers. The crime rate is particularly increasing in government schools.

As teachers fail to provide proper education to students, they lose respect and become victims of students’ anger and misbehaviour. There are also cases when male students misbehave with female teachers and use vulgar language against them.

Romance between school students and drug addiction are among the other irritants that are adversely affecting the careers of students, and school teachers are unable to control them.

This is the threatening situation in Delhi’s buildings which are incidentally called schools.

The politicians cry that the young people will bring a better future for India. However, in the absence of the right education and employment for them, the young people of India are like time bombs which will explode to bring disaster for the country. And this disastrous process has already begun at least in the schools of Delhi. Believe me.

By Rakesh Raman, who is a government award-winning journalist and runs free school for deserving children under his NGO – RMN Foundation.

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Rakesh Raman