Call on the recently formed National Unity Consultative Council to study the present meritocracy based university intake system which is flawed, unfair and unprofessional , and to recommend the necessary ,bold changes to the Government.
At the MIC Annual General Meeting held in Melaka yesterday, MIC President Datuk Palanivel asked the government to return to the quota system in the intake for public universities.
He said that the meritocracy system practised now had failed and he revealed that the total number of Indian university students is now 1,742 out of a total of 51, 673 students in public universities, which is less than 2% of the total.
Palanivel did not explain why the meritocracy system has failed but undoubtedly, there is certainly something wrong with the system.
In July this year, amid public outcry that top scorers had failed to gain admission into public universities, former deputy education minister Datuk Wee Ka Siong had described the meritocracy as ‘ more quota than quota system”.
He revealed that successful Chinese applicants were the lowest for the 2013/2014 session, comprising only 7,913 students or 19 per cent from a total of 41,573 applicants.
He said that since the implementation of the meritocracy policy, the percentage of successful Chinese applicants had never gone below 20 per cent.
Wee also revealed that the intake of Chinese students for eight major courses in public universities – medical, dentistry, pharmacy, electronics and electrical engineering, chemical engineering, law and accounting – had been declining in recent years from 26.2% in 2001 to 25.3% in 2012 and 20.7 per cent this year.
Under the racial quota intake system that was in force from 1979 to 2002, the intake formula was in the ratio of 55:45 for bumiputra and non bumiputra students.
So what have caused the meritocracy system to be more quota than the quota system?
I have said in the past that the two most important issues about the university intake are unfairness and lack of transparency. Unfortunately, till today the government has not addressed these two issues.
The absence of a common university entrance examination has made the meritocracy intake system introduced since 2003 to be unfair and unprofessional.
Unfair public university intake is not only a cause of brain drain; it also has an impact on national unity.
I therefore call on the recently formed National Unity Consultative Council to study the present meritocracy based university intake system which is flawed, unfair and unprofessional, and to recommend the necessary, bold changes to the Government.