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'Degree' of change

With so many elected representatives failing miserably to deliver on their promises, generation after generation, one wonders why the academic background of our elected representatives has never really been a matter of serious consideration.

The BMC elections are upon us, and MiD DAY has reported on the poor and barely passable academic credentials of most of the female candidates who want to serve the city in the capacity of corporators.

It was important to study and examine the matter (no pun intended there), considering the fact that this is the first time that 50 per cent of the seats in the civic body will be occupied by women; for the first time, what they bring to the table will have a far-reaching impact on the future of the city.

In most debates on the matter, it is said that experience and ability are the two crucial factors which determine how successful an elected representative will be, not education. In fact, claims are made that the state has seen seasoned politicians occupying coveted seats of power - even leading the cabinet - with minimum educational qualifications.

This begs the question why people with sound academic skills are hard to come by in when it comes to fighting elections. In an era when our fellow countrymen are making it to NASA and giving a lasting foundation to the world's software market, the academic background of people who play a vital role in running various institutions in the world's largest democracy should not take a back seat.

When we say one educated woman in a family can educate future generations, then why should the same belief not apply for educated women in the assembly? Armed with a league of articulate and educated women, we could well avoid some of the embarrassing goof-ups that so often make it to headlines across the globe.

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