Published On: Mon, Nov 28th, 2011

Supreme Court judge Justice A K Patnaik urges bridging education divide

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supreme Court Of India

Supreme Court of India

A day after Chief Justice of India S H Kapadia said in New Delhi disjointed distribution of prosperity among masses was unacceptable, Supreme Court judge Justice A K Patnaik here said on Sunday boom in professional education has got no meaning if it is beyond the reach of the masses.

Speaking at the foundation day function of Utkal University, Justice Patnaik reminded the audience about the CJI’s observation a day before and said, “Growth of India should not be confined to one section.”

CJI Kapadia, while speaking at the Law Day function in Supreme Court on Saturday, had said that “economic prosperity has to happen but I do not want 300 million to prosper at the cost of 700 million. Here comes the role of judiciary”.

Patnaik said though Bhubaneswar has emerged as an educational hub, the so-called excellent private educational institutions remain beyond the reach of the common man. The scenario of education has substantially changed over the years with entry of private players, he said.

“Many bright, talented students can’t afford expensive professional education. Children from all sections should be able to afford education,” Justice Patnaik said, adding state-funded universities should start more professional courses specifically for economically weaker sections.

“I appeal to the Utkal University to take up more professional courses for economically weaker sections,” said Justice Patnaik, who is an alumnus of the varsity.

Taking a dig at the ongoing system of higher education, Justice Patnaik said it is catering to requirement of markets only. While the best lawyers and technocrats are being hired by corporates, few are left to serve the society at large.

“Universities should start courses which are relevant to Indian society, both rural and urban,” the SC judge said.

Speaking on the sidelines of the celebration, Utkal University vice-chancellor professor P K Sahoo said the varsity is planning to start an engineering college from the next academic year, offering BTech courses in various disciplines.