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Inaugural Address at TPO Summit-2013

Inaugural Address at TPO Summit-2013

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Published by Swami Vedatitananda
By Swami Divyananda, Trustee, Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission, and Secretary, Ramakrishna Mission Saradapith:
By Swami Divyananda, Trustee, Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission, and Secretary, Ramakrishna Mission Saradapith:

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Published by: Swami Vedatitananda on Sep 05, 2013
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12/09/2013

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Inaugural Address
at the
TPO Summit
2013
Held at Ramakrishna Mission ShilpamandiraBelur MathOn 21
st
August 2013Dear monastic brothers, Sri Biplab Ray, Deputy Director, Directorate of TechnicalEducation, Govt of West Bengal, Sri Partho Chakraborty, Vice President [Projects],SenBo Engg Ltd, Sri Anupam Bhattacharya, Entrepreneur & Fellow of Indian Society of Electrical Engineers, Sri Ranjan Ghosh Dastidar, Technical Consultant, Uma Group of Companies, Distinguished Training & Placement Officers of different reputedPolytechnics all over West BengalI am very glad to inaugurate this Training & Placement Officers Seminar, the firstof its kind in our State, today at Ramakrishna Mission Shilpamandira. I am also very happy that you have all come here, representing your respective Colleges, with a fondhope that there will be a meaningful dialogue between Industry & EducationalInstitutions, whereby both will depart from here mutually enriched.Swami Vedatitananda just now said that this TPO Summit
2013 has beenorganized by the Directorate of Technical Education & Training, Govt of West Bengal,under the aegis of Ramakrishna Mission Shilpamandira. Well, allow me to explain to you, in some detail, the thought behind this endeavor. We all know that today, around 20,000 students are emerging out of this State with a Diploma certificate.
I quote this statistic from the West Bengal State Council’s
official website. Even if we assume that 15% of them pursue higher education, we are left with at least 17,000 students who need to be absorbed in the manufacturing or servicessector.Now, the 61
st
round of the National Sample Survey Organization states that 26%of Diploma Engineers in India are unemployable. Even if we consider that our State belongs in the average band of this statistic, we are left with 4,500 diploma holders whoare unemployable. They have a valid diploma certificate. Yet no industry would like toemploy them! When established industries reject these diploma holders asunemployable, I guess it would be meaningless to even consider the option of entrepreneurship for this group!On the other hand, the demand for skilled work force from the Industrial sector isincreasing. CRISIL Research has published that in 2010, the requirement for skilled work force in the National Industry sector was 92 million! The demand from theIT/ITeS [Information Technology & Information Technology enabled Services] sector,again at the National level, was around 132 million for the same year.This seems to be a strange situation we are facing here. On the one hand, there isgenuine demand for skilled people from the Industrial Sector. On the other hand, the
 
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Educational Institutions are sincerely pumping out trained engineers, who, they swearare skilled. But ultimately, these so-called trained, skilled engineers are rejected asunemployable. Clearly there is a great gap somewhere here. Common sense tells us thatthe gap is due a lack of clear and open communication between Industry & EducationalInstitution. The educational Institutes perhaps need to understand clearly what theIndustry needs in the engineers we are releasing into society.Dr. Parijat De, the present Director of Technical Education & Training, Govt of  West Bengal is one of the most genuine thinkers I have seen in recent times. He has aheart that is as sensitive as his intellect is sharp & brilliant. Once, we were discussingthis peculiar mismatch between demand & supply regarding employable engineers inour State and he expressed a desire for organizing a common platform where we couldhave the TPOs of all Polytechnics of our State of West Bengal, intearct withrepresentatives of Industry.
Dr De’s progressive thinking is ably supplemented by Sr
iBiplab Ray. The whole idea seemed so far-sighted, and something that would ultimately  be of immediate use to students of West Bengal, that we felt honor-bound to provide thelogistic support for this noble endeavor.Therefore, we are assembled here today. With me on the dais are Sri ParthoChakraborty, Vice President [Projects], SenBo Engg Ltd, Sri Anupam Bhattacharya,Entrepreneur & Fellow of Indian Society of Electrical Engineers, Sri Ranjan GhoshDastidar, Technical Consultant, Uma Group of Companies. Later on during the day, we will be having Smt Shaswati Basu, HR Manager of L&T Construction joining thisseminar. I hope you all have a meaningful interaction through this TPO Summit-2013.Before I leave you to your deliberations of the day, I would like to share with youmy understanding of this whole issue of employability of engineers that has cropped uptoday.Let me tell you a story that Sri Ramakrishna used to tell. You will find it in the SriSri Ramakrishna Kathamrita. A well-learned scholar was once crossing the Ganga by  boat. He started a conversation with his fellow passengers. He started explaining the various branches of learning that he had mastered. He asked his fellow passengers if they knew the Vedanta Philoso
phy. They said they didn’t know. He felt sorry for them
that 25% of their life was a failure. He then asked them if they knew the Sankhya &Nyaya Philosophies. Again, the hapless passengers replied in the negative. Once again,he felt genuinely sorry for them and concluded that at least 50% of their life was lost. By this time, a storm started gathering in the sky and the river got choppy and the boatstarted rocking. There was every chance that the boat would turn upside down. The boatman asked the Scholar if he knew how to swim. He started trembling and said he
didn’t.
The
 boatman shrugged his shoulders and said, “Well, Sir. I am sorry to say that
then your entire life will be lost, for now the boat may capsize and we may need to swim
to the shore.”
  We are no doubt imparting good quality technical education in our class rooms.But perhaps there may be a shortfall in the hands-on experience in the laboratories &
 workshops that may need to be addressed in today’s seminar. Hon’ble Minister for

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