Politics, unionism in education cannot be separated: Amartya Sen


Kolkata : Observing that politics cannot be separated from unions formed by teachers or students, Nobel laureate Amartya Sen Tuesday emphasised on the need for using the synergy of the two entities to universalise and improve the quality of education in India.

Support TwoCircles

“Traditionally and globally unions of teachers and students have had political affiliations. The synergy of the two entities has historical importance and the two cannot be separated,” he said.

Speaking at an interactive session on “Problems of school education and the role of teachers” associations” at the Calcutta University, Sen said there was a need to use the synergy of politics and unionism optimally for development of education.

“Politics is defined as the art of the possible. We must therefore look at ways to synergise politics and union movement to universalise and improve the quality of education in the country,” he said.

Though, he refused to comment on the Vishva Bharati row where a student was forced to lick her urine for bedwetting, Sen – an alumnus of the university founded by another Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore – said punishment to students has never yielded any positive results.

He said the quality of school education in India was inferior in comparision to other countries and urged on the need to explore ways to develop the standard of education.

“The reason for many prevalent social vices in our country is the lack of education. Education alone can remove caste or gender based or other inequalities. There is need to explore ways to spread education to remove the inequalities in the society,” added Sen.