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Do I have any merit?

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an articles from Times of India by Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar, TNN | May 28, 2006, 12.46AM IST

Youngsters are up in arms. "I work so hard trying for good marks and admission to top colleges. Is it fair if I am kept out by somebody with lower marks but a backward caste certificate? I am sorry that his forefathers faced iscrimination. But I have not discriminated against anybody.

Why penalise me for the injustices of history?"

Thus do many youngsters (and striking doctors) bemoan the injustice of caste-based reservations. They are not consoled by the proposed increase in college seats. They think that those seats too should be filled on merit. We need a merit-based society, they say.

I'm afraid their notion of fairness and merit is dead wrong. Rewarding students with the highest marks benefits people born in the right families, not the most intelligent or meritorious. I do not want to cast stones at others. So allow me to prove that I myself am an unjust beneficiary of an unjust system.

I have a pretty good track record. I got stellar marks in school and topped my college class. As a journalist, I rose swiftly to become editor of first Financial Express and later The Economic Times, the country's two biggest financial dailies. I had no political or business godfathers: I rose on merit.

Some years ago, I did a quickie IQ quiz in a magazine. The quiz result said I had an IQ of 130-135, a very high score, and that only 3% of people had higher intelligence. That made me feel good, of course.

But consider this. India has a population of 1.1 billion, of which the workforce is 400 million. Three per cent of 400 million is 12 million people. So, in a truly meritorious society, 12 million people should have a higher position in the workforce than me.

Do I have any merit? - The Times of India
Because the political parties cosider 97%votes and not 3% inteligentia for their survival.The architect of Indian Constitution is to be faulted and not the rulers. Renganathan.
Originally posted by Prasad

"I work so hard trying for good marks and admission to top colleges. Is it fair if I am kept out by somebody with lower marks but a backward caste certificate? I am sorry that his forefathers faced iscrimination. But I have not discriminated against anybody."

To me the answer looks simple, but this may not be acceptable to some people here:-

<edited and removed. the message can become provocative and can lead to some unwarranted, probably heated, discussions>
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Dear Sri Prasad,
Do I have any merit?
That was the question which arose in the minds of many young meritorious students during our School / College days in 1950s, when the then Madras Government implemented "Communal GO" with new vigour. There were only limited Educational institutions to part higher education. We suffered a lot because of reverse discrimination for no fault of ours. Still, we survived to give better life to our children and grand children.
No one need to lose hope on this score, intelligent person will find ways and means to survive when he faces difficulty.

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Mr. Brahmanyan,
I liked your analysis, this is 5 years old post. I still hear stories similar ti this from TB out of Tamil Nadu. I might be out of date, and my information is 3rd hand.
But I am amazed to see the same zeal to blame today's brahmin for the deeds of forefathers. But today's brahmins did not perpetuate that, why blame them. One can not paint every brahmin with sane brush.
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Blaming brahmins is nothing new. It happened in the past right from Buddha to muslims to christian evangelists to mayawati to DK and their loyalists in new avatar. They all believed that sanatana dharmists and hindus cannot be converted to other faiths unless brahmins are totally wiped out by elimination or conversion. It has not happened and will never happen despite the virulent attack by neo-intellectuals who claim that one is not a brahmin because he is not doing 'unchavrutti'. Trying to instill guilt feelings by quoting scriptures will not work. Those who have faith in brahminical values and traditions will uphold and nourish their culture.
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