SAS Nagar: Appointment of Manohar Kant Kalohia, a retired IAS officer of the Rajasthan cadre, as Chairman of the Punjab School Education Board is an exceedingly stupid decision of the Government of Punjab. His appointment is an insult to all the experienced educationists, academicians of high caliber, serving and the retired bureaucrats of Punjab; who have all varied experience of serving in Punjab in various capacities for a long period of time. There is no dearth of highly knowledgeable wide ranging veterans from the field of education in Punjab to occupy this position. I wonder why Capt. Amarinder Singh preferred to chose a retired bureaucrat from Rajasthan, who neither knows Punjabi Language nor is conversant with the curriculum of the Punjab schools.
Punjab School Education Board is responsible to design the modules of school curricula from nursery classes up to class 12, printing and publication of text books required for school education (Punjab specific) and conduction of exams. It is for the first time, breaking all the previous precedents, a person from outside Punjab has been super-imposed on the Board (PSEB) in brazen violation of the dignity of Punjab by contemptuously hurting the ethos of academic decency.
Ideally a person having a sense of responsibility and belongingness to Punjab should have been selected. It would have deemed more appropriate if a high value search committee had been constituted to find a suitable person from Punjab who could then be appointed as Chairman PSEB. A selection pattern based on merit, as was used for selecting the Vice Chancellors of Punjabi University Patiala and Guru Nanak Dev University Amritsar, could have been used.
I am afraid, some kind of ‘demon ghost of Rasputin’ has stranglehold on the wisdom of Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder, which explains his resorting to such ridiculous decisions, without application of mind. Even a referendum of class 8th school children would condescendingly reject the appointment of Kalohia as Chairman of the Punjab School Education Board, if their opinion on the matter is sought. Therefore I would appeal to the conscious of the Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh, to immediately rescind the pejorative appointment of Kalohia by honoring the sentiments of the academia of Punjab.
I would also ask the gentleman, Manohar Kant Kalohia against whom I have no personal prejudice, to not join the office in his new position as it is bound to propel very serious rebellion against his illogical appointment in utter disregard of the sentiments of the people of Punjab.
Writer is Former Deputy Speaker of Punjab Vidhan Sabha.