As of august, 2016, 57 students have taken their lives being unable to survive the pressure and workload that they face in ‘education hub’ of northern india i.e. kota, rajasthan. Almost every week a student suicide is reported, be it from school or from a college. Why is that the future of the country is taking such extreme steps? Why is that the students’s in spite of being working hard and relentlessly, take such steps?
One reason is that the desire for highly-paid jobs and demands of overbearing parents, and failure in any of them, has caused a suicide epidemic among students in india. What everyone wants is a six digit salary, five working days a week, a four wheeler and a three BHK, kind of job. Considering the population of india and the scarcity of resources, it will be naive to think that this feet is achievable to each and everyone vying for it. And therefore, not getting what you want or what your parents seek from you, results in severe mental trauma for the students. Money oriented dreams often come to hault, and this can be seriously bad to deal with.
The second, by and large a bigger yet un-talked about problem is the various restrictions imposed on 15 year olds when they are asked to choose their careers. Tell me. How many of you are on the way to become what you wanted to become. 10 years back what were the dreams that you fantasized. What were the things that you desired for. What actually did you want to become in life. Are you on that path? I bet 90% of these artists, cricketers, singers and athletes would now be preparing themselves for a 9-5 job inside a five-by-five cubicle. Suicides are mere numbers. What about those students who are forced into streams and careers against their will. They die on the inside, and that too every day. And what if somehow you manage to squander your way to become what your parents and the society wants you to become You will be working day-in day-out at a place where your soul chokes. A being working without passion and interest is nothing but a machine, a machine that will break down one day and that too beyond repair. Individuals, in search of materialistic things loose themselves, forget value of their life, importance of their health, meaning of their time and worth of their dreams. These people are not only a liability for their parents and society, but also a liability for their respective professions and countries.
People talk about brain drain. But no one really talks about soul-drain. When you are forced to take up a profession against your will, your soul is being drained out, and that too across a virtually non-existent world. Money can keep your body alive, but not your soul. All in all, people ask you to perform in a field which is not made for you. Students are straight away thrown in deeper end, and expected to miraculously come out with flying colours. It is like asking a fish to climb up a tree and that too faster than a monkey.
If these Sky high cut-offs, rat race for careers in medical and engineering, increasing suicide cases and 12-14 hours of studies in a day, does not compel you to have a look at this education system of ours, then nothing will. Success is never sure. I am not saying that following your dreams will eventually make you successful. But at least if you do not become successful, you will fail in doing what you like. You will at least enjoy this journey and efforts of yours. It is just that aiming for the moon will atlest land you up amongst the stars.
What is wrong with people is that they expect the students and the youth to choose a profession and then build their lives instead of asking them about what life they actually want to live and then allowing them to choose a profession for themselves.
Children are allowed to fly in the beautiful high skies of their careers, but like a kite. Strangled by a thread. A Thread of expectations of parents and society. Failure to meet these expectations makes this thread an albatross around their neck and in some cases, a noose.