Graduates of Indian Universities need not apply*

The new council of ministers of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government has drawn attention for the number of alumni from St Stephens College in it, the number of women in it, the number of first-time MPs below the age of 40, and sundry other attributes.

It is also remarkable for one other reason: the number of products it boasts of from foreign Universities.


Manmohan Singh: University of Oxford, and University of Cambridge

P. Chidambaram: Harvard University

Kapil Sibal: Harvard University

S.M. Krishna: Southern Methodist University, Texas; George Washington University, Washington DC

Jairam Ramesh: Massachusetts Institute fo Technology

Prithviraj Chauhan: University of California at Los Angeles

Salman Kursheed: University of Oxford

M.S. Gill: University of Cambridge

Shashi Tharoor: Tufts University, Massachusetts

Agatha Sangma: Nottingham University

Sachin Pilot: Pennnsylvania University, Wharton Business School

Jyotiraditya Scindia: Harvard University, and Stanford University

* Except to fill the quotas of alliance partners, and minister of State posts

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17 Responses to “Graduates of Indian Universities need not apply*”

  1. Abhi Says:

    Most of the above graduates are foreign graduates because of who their father is, not because of who they are. Hardly any of them are good orators except Shashi Tharoor. Our own much hyped SM Krishna can not construct 2 sentences without thinking for 5 mins.

  2. Not A Witty Nick Says:

    Perhaps the young ‘uns would have studied in India if the IITs, St. Stephens and other elite institutions had a reservation for politicians’ kids. :P

    You should not ignore the fact that SM Krishna and Manmohan Singh etc., studied in Govt. Law College, Bangalore and Panjab University etc.

  3. alvaa matte Says:

    Your way of tomtomming your favorite party! Till these days, you use to ridicule BJP for anything and everything!!

  4. Simple Says:


    Why this excessive focus on oratory?

    Nitish Kumar is a lousy orator but he won Bihar hands down.

    Naveen Patnaik is slower in expressing himself than S M Krishna, but see what Naveen did in Orissa

    Manmohan Singh is not a good orator, but a great admministrator.

    Raman Singh is not given to excessive talk, and see how his party own in Chattisgarh.

    Neither Rahul nor Sonia are known to be great Orators, but see where they lead the party to : 206 seats.!

    On the other hand, what happened to great orators?

    Vajpayee lead his party to defeat in 2004 elections.

    Advani lead his party to a decisive defeat in 2009 elections.

    Modi could barely hold on to Gujarat. His 300 rallies across India and his thundering speeches and witty one liners gave BJP a measly 25 seats.

    The master orator Laloo prasad Yadav was wiped out in Bihar.

    People want good administrators, not great orators.

    And that.

    That is how intelligent India voted in 2009

  5. Abhi Says:

    Simple, First things first. My point was, if that was not clear enough – the above lot, at least that I know of, has foreign degrees not because who they are, but because who their father is. I have no special respect for Sachin pilot or Rahul Gandhi because they hold foreign degrees. They did not earn it and hence they should not feel superior about it, period.

    Secondly, about the oratory part – I think PMs job is a demands a little more than a nerdy college professors skills, which clearly MM Singh does not have. If you had seen the press conference after the poll results, you would understand it. If he can not control a bunch of news reporters, I wonder what else can he. As far as SMK goes, I can’t agree he really earned his Law degree deservedly from Washington University with his oratory skills.

    Lalu Yadav and Narendra Modi are good orators? Give me a break! One can impress only a bunch of illiterate people, latter can only entice hate mongers.

    And about the intelligence of voters, state of our nation says a lot. Can we not come to terms with the fact that majority in this country are a bunch of morons? Do we have to live in a perpetual self pleasing deception?

  6. Gaby Says:


    Oddnvani and Vajpayee took the BJP from 2 seats to 183 seats- never mind how since the ends seem more important to you than the means. Rajiv Gandhi took his party from 411 to 190. Oratory had nothing to do with both processes. It was simply circumstances and stupidity. Also Laloo was the toast of Bihar once upon a time.

    Churumuri seems to be plumbing the depths of inanity whilst crowing over its favourite political party. This latest attempt puts in Harvard, Oxford, MIT and Cambridge in with Nottingham, Tufts etc- what is the point if there is one. What’s with Indian graduates need not apply? How is it different from what another of pot-shot article in Churumuri about the affairs in Australia describes as Apartheid!!!!.

  7. Pulikeshi the Last Says:

    One minor correction: Krishna was also a Fullbright fellow at Yale for a year.

    When one thinks of degrees from prestigious institutions from abroad, be it from Britain or the U. S., one needs to keep in mind that there are what are called legacy admissions. Surely not all the Kennedy clan is Harvard material, any more than Rajiv Gandhi and Benazir Bhutto were Harvard and Oxford stuff.

    There are also hundreds of international scholarships which are administered through government agencies. It is surely naive to think that our officials and ministers do not interefere with awarding those scholarships.

    Education abroad does not always produce good orators. Took Nehru a while to learn to speak Hindi in public. His daughter was always a most boring public speaker, a columnist for Illustrated Weekly of India was canned for saying that she was a champion bore.

    Many “foreign returned” professors are unable to speak English well, and I am not referring to English teachers although many are in the same category.

    It is the public which determines if one is a good speaker regardless of the range of his rhetorical repertoire. To be seen as good is to be seen as credible, a scenario that requires a passion for unselfish public service. How many of the glitterati listed here meet that test?

  8. harkol Says:

    I really wonder if we should grudge so many highly educated people being in leadership position in our country?!! Why is this an issue? If their education and exposure lets them bring in fresh approach to administration, we all gain.

    I think the fact that so many foreign educated ministers are sworn-in, in a way shows how Elections are being won more and more by rich, highly educated people. This isn’t very uncommon in most developed democracies. Rich and highly educated are indeed more connected (networked) than others and they tend to raise up within the parties faster.


    You are absolutely right. Oratory is a overvalued skill in times of normalcy. It is only in times of crisis (or war) that oratory can be of real help, as it can motivate and enthuse a nation to brace up and fight.

    In normal times what matters the most is good, proactive and progressive administration.

    Arguably the best prime minister we’ve had was PVN, who wasn’t a great orator.

  9. tarlesubba Says:

    PTL might be of some interest to you.
    kharge took oath in kannada.

    star of mysore

    New Delhi, June 1- The first session of the 15th Lok Sabha began today with oath-taking ceremony from 11 am.

    Finance Minister Pranab Mukherji was the first to take the oath (in English) followed by BJP Leader L.K. Advani and Congress Supremo Sonia Gandhi (in Hindi).

    Law Minister Veerappa Moily (Karnataka) took the oath in English while Labour Minister Mallikarjun Kharge in Kannada.

    Sumitra Mahajan (Indore, MP) took the oath in Sanskrit and Home Minister Chidambaram in Tamil.

    Seniormost Lok Sabha member Manikrao Gavit (Congress) has been appointed Pro-tem Speaker by President Pratibha Devisingh Patil. Gavit, 75, will perform the duties of the Speaker till the election of a new Speaker on June 3.

    The President has also appointed a panel of four senior members Basudeb Acharia (CPI-M), Arjun Charan Sethi (BJD), Biren Singh Engti (Congress) and Sumitra Mahajan (BJP) to administer oath to the newly elected members.

    Parliament will convene towards the end of June for a longer session when the new government will present the full budget for 2009-10.

    The UPA has come to power with a renewed mandate as Congress alone secured 206 seats. The party had 145 seats in the previous lower House. With pre-poll allies, the UPA was almost near the majority mark of 272 and back by post-poll partners, the coalition strength has gone up to 322. After the President’s address, the House would discuss and pass the motion of thanks to the President. The session would conclude on June 9.

  10. tarlesubba Says:

    IIT @ muddenhalli. i dont care where, but i hope they have put more thought to it than mere symbolism of Sir MV’s birthplace. places like dharwad, mangalore or mysore where there already is an ecosystem for academia would have served better imho and would have had a multiplier effect. consider this, most new families have both husband and wife educated and working. what are the chances both spouses will find work in muddenhalli? is it wise to force people to make sagely choices just to uphold a symbolism?

    IIT will be established at Muddenahalli, says Moily

    Special Correspondent

    Chickaballapur: Union Minister for Law and Justice M. Veerappa Moily on Sunday said that an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) would be established at Muddenahalli on the outskirts of Chickaballapur.

    Addressing a meeting of Congress workers here, Mr. Moily, who represents Chickaballapur in the Lok Sabha, said that he had discussed the matter with Union Human Resources Development Minister Kapil Sibal. Steps would be taken soon to set up an IIT at Muddenahalli, he said. During his election campaign, Mr. Moily had promised that he would strive to get an IIT established at Muddenahalli, the birthplace of the legendary engineer Sir M. Visvesvaraya. Muddenhalli is all set to occupy a prominent place in the country educational map. Visvesvaraya Technological University (VTU) has also drawn up plans to set up Visvesvaraya Institute of Advanced Technology (VIAT) at Muddenahalli.

    According to Higher Education Minister Arvind Limbavali, foundation stone for the VIAT would be laid this month at the 200-acre plot identified for the project. Besides facilitating advanced research in various branches of engineering and technology, the VIAT would offer degree and post-graduate courses.

  11. tarlesubba Says:

    if they want they can make a small town near one of the other ka towns and call it hosmuddenalli and install a bust of sMV made preferably from metals refined in bhadravathi by a ka’diga sculptor of repute and taste.

    But for me more important is how many kannadaigas can really aspire with abilities to compete in the JEE. wht are the chances a kid from muddenhalli can crack the JEE? hopefully, this iit proves an inspiration.

  12. Pulikeshi the Last Says:


    I am definitely delighted that twenty-six of our narabhakshakas took their oath in Kannada. Why not the other two? Is that because Moily’s home language is Tulu and Muniyappa speaks Telugu at home?

    Now there is a marginal reason for the Kannada Pradhikara and the KRV to exist, but let’s not exult too much. Nothing has been done for Kannada yet. On second thoughts, that shouldn’t matter much. In a couple of weeks or so I am going to renounce Kannada altogether. Telugu is the future language of Karnataka.

  13. Pushkar Says:

    Didn’t knew about the academic history many of them.

    But lets take it this way, atleast these people having studied in universities across the world have returned back & are serving the nation in the best of their capactities.

    Now atleast we dont have Criminals like Shibu Soren, Lalu….. as cabinet ministers.

  14. Chikkodi Chinnaswamy Says:

    @ PTL

    Is it the Venk-ayya effect?

  15. Pulikeshi the Last Says:


    Criminality does not have to involve just murder. Most of those phorign returned have other kinds of blood on their hands and heads. That is minor when we consider that they are not at all troubled by anything they have done.


    I had forgotten all about that bakaasura. He is one of the three non-Kannadigas to whom a Rajyasabha seat was sold was given as a gift. Well, at least, he can pet the Reddys in their own language and save Yed’s greedy hide for a while yet.

  16. V.Singh Says:

    I am from Technical Teachers Community. I want to have the Attention of Honorable HRD Minister Mr. Kapil Sibal that there are so many agendas for the HRD ministry, but the sixth pay commission of Technical teachers is not implemented yet and we are not hpoing so in the next three to four months also. Therefore it is a humble request from the HRD minister to have a look in this matter as a responsible and accontable minister.

  17. Potax Says:

    I can’t see the point of this post. So they went to foreign universities
    your article seems to forget that quite a few of the people on that list are neither from political families nor from very well off ones. Plus they went for a graduate education, motivated by a desire for higher learning .

    I also find this quite hypocritical. I am sure you have written blogs abusing the education standards amongst Indian politicians . Well now you have politicians with education and you find that you don’t like what they have.
    Bah humbug!

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