Unchecked—the rise and rise of Nilkhet's corrupt academics
Once, we loved Nilkhet because we believed that we could find a rare book there even though it wasn't to be found in famous libraries in the city. Another advantage was that we students especially could buy some original books secondhand, at a lower price. During my Dhaka University student life (2005-2010), I had not heard of such a situation as is presented in this story published in Star Weekend. Our teachers were not interested in giving us many assignments, rather they would focus on exams. Now we need to think deeply on how to ensure quality higher education in the country before the system collapses in its entirety.
The cover story “Thesis for Sale!” in Star Weekend last Friday is not of one particular scenario but a reflection of a bigger canvas. This approach of 'copy & paste' has become a deep-rooted mind-set of our nation as a whole. It is disgraceful to see this taking place every day, everywhere—be it at home, educational institutions, government offices, NGOs, donor agencies, corporate bodies. In my professional life I have seen how many of my colleagues copied and pasted content from different sources including websites to prove that they did things creatively and sought the boss' blessings for benefits and promotion. When I was doing my professional masters at DU I saw how irresponsible government officials took pictures of class notes and lessons on their mobile phones and copied the same on the exam sheets. I have seen how so-called consultants and officials copied and pasted items from websites and presented these to the audience to show how 'knowledgeable' they are. I have seen people from donor agencies and UN organisations come up with ideas copying from other's ideas to dictate to us like they are 'development gurus'.
Now I realise why nowadays most people resort to copy and paste instead of creating something original. The fundamental fact is that our education system does not allow us the opportunity to create and produce something on our own. Due to a lack of self-esteem and being void in knowledge but with the greed to gain our desired ambitions, people tend to grab undue privileges through corrupt means—copy and paste is one such practice. I know people who did two Master's degrees from DU but cannot write a one-page document on their own. Interestingly, because there is a growing demand for such copy and paste means businesses like Nilkhet are flourishing day-by-day.
Manusher Jonno Foundation
Crossfires and the war on drugs
"Crossfire", "illegal drug dealer," and “unlawful killing " are familiar words nowadays and arguments on both sides (whether or not it is justified to deal with the situation in such a way) regarding these issues have become the talk of the town. But whatever the situation may be, we must take it seriously because many of our young boys and girls are somehow involved in drug dealing or consumption.
In the capital, school, college and university goers, aged between 15 and 25 are very much prone to this. Busy parents often fail to guide their children who are taking yaba, cannabis and other drugs, mostly out of curiosity. as they have easy access to these. The availability of the drugs is another big factor here. The controllers of the underworld prioritise young consumers as it is easy to convince them and to spread harmful drugs among them.
Now, what is important for us is that we must protect our future generations from it. We must teach them what is good and what is bad for them. We must save these children from taking drugs at any cost. A social movement is necessary for us to guide our children.
Rifat Munir Eti