Origin of the Universe – from a 5th Grader

Varun Putcha (varun.putcha@gmail.com) sent the following paper

Universal Reionization: And the Case of the Missing Dwarf Galaxies

Why do so many dwarf galaxies near the, Milky Way not appear?

 3 extremely tiny *ghost* galaxies have been discovered by the Hubble Space telescope (HST). These dwarf galaxies all share the same birth date, 13 billion years ago (when they first started making stars). They also all abruptly stopped making stars, all in the first 1 billion years of the universe! To understand this we must first understand what a “galaxy” is.

Galaxies are massive clusters of stars. They may have up to trillions of stars.

There are 4 main types of galaxies, elliptical galaxies, spiral galaxies, starburst galaxies, and irregular galaxies. It is believed that most galaxies have a supermassive black hole in the center of them. Most galaxies are organized into groups and clusters. These in turn form Super clusters. There are over 170,000,000,000 (170 billion) galaxies in our observable universe, and possibly more in the theoretical wider universe.

            Then there is a whole other subcategory of galaxies called dwarf galaxies. It is believed that most galaxies are really dwarf galaxies. Dwarf galaxies do NOT have a black hole, and compared to larger galaxies, are very tiny. Many dwarf galaxies are absorbed and ripped apart into bigger galaxies. And almost all normal galaxies have hundreds of dwarf galaxies orbiting them. Imagine how many of them dwarf galaxies are! Now that you know what galaxies and dwarf galaxies are, let’s get back to the question, why do many extremely ancient, pristine “ghost” galaxies have so few stars?        

            2 main theories have emerged as the most likely explanation to this intriguing phenomenon. One suggests that it happened during the second age of reionization, while the other suggests some other causes, mainly a supernova. These ideas both intrigued me, and are very interesting.

            THEORY 1

“These galaxies are all ancient and they’re all the same age, so you know something came down like a guillotine and turned off the star formation at the same time in these galaxies,” said Tom Brown of the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, Md., the study’s leader. “The most likely explanation is reionization.” 

            This all happened in the second stage of reionization. Reionization began in the first 1 billion years after the big bang. During this stage of the universe, radiation from the first stars knocked electron off primeval hydrogen atoms. This caused them to become transparent to UV radiation. Many big galaxies were massive enough to shield themselves from the deadly radiation, causing star production to continue. The same radiation that sparked reionization seems to have squelched the star making capabilities in numerous dwarf galaxies, including Leo IV, one of the 3 galaxies found by the HST. (Next Page A Leo IV comparison)

(See Leo IV Image as a separate post)

As you can see in the image, f you look at the section where Leo IV is, it barely has any stars once you remove the background galaxies!  (100- 1000) A typical dwarf galaxy would have300-1000x that amount! These are the effects of reionization.

            Dwarf galaxies like Leo IV did not have enough mass to stop the dreaded UV radiation. Their remaining gas was stripped away, and star making stopped. In this particular situation, the dark matter outnumbers the matter by a factor of 100! In normal dwarf galaxies, this ratio is 10 to 1. This all suggests that the dark matter was a byproduct of whatever happened.

            If this is all true than it must a have been a deadly time. Now onto theory 2!

 

THEORY 2

Some people believe that a massive internal supernova blew out any gas these dwarf galaxies once had. This theory is obviously supported by the fact that all the stars are ancient. Although this theory does not have backing from the HST like theory 1, it has some proof. Some stellar gas remains have been fund hovering around the location of the galaxies. Although most people believe these are recent, some believe they are ancient. If so, why did they not create stars? That is a flaw in the theory. Most astronomers support Theory 1 though.

 

Agreements between theories

Both theories agree though, that this may explain why we only see 12-20 dwarf galaxies around the Milky Way, even though computer simulations say there should be thousands. Reionization and supernovae are/were deadly forces that ripped through the universe; they didn’t have the mass to stop it. This was a dramatic era of our universe with many things happening, this may be some of the first casualties we may discover, and is probably not the only type too.

 

This is a key component of understanding the early universe, and astronomers are frantically looking for a reason that they didn’t survive. Maybe it is because they didn’t form black holes like other major galaxies, or maybe they were hit with a giant explosion… We may not know, until telescope many times stronger than the HST peer back into time and reveal the secrets of our past.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Radically Different i-Connect ITM PGDM

Project i-Connect and the new “Radically different ITM PGDM Program 2012-14

ITM Ver 2.0 – Reinventing ITM for the next decade!

THE NEED TO CHANGE:

ITM completed the first 20 years on Oct 8, 2011. Our history has been full of challenges and satisfactions. Looking back, ITM owes its success to several crucial policies adopted since Day 1:

–       Not to sell any seats ever

–       Design the hardest working PGDM of the times – 36 courses + Internship + Capstone Project, involving at least 50% more work load than any other University affiliated MBA or MMS Course

–       Maintain a culture of participation, transparency and equity

–       Merit oriented admissions

–       No hidden charges

When ITM started in 1991 there were hardly 30+ B-Schools in the country. Now the there are over 4000! The great majority adopting the 2-Year AICTE approved autonomous PGDM pioneered by ITM in 1991! It has taken some very hard work to retain a rank among the second tier ie Institutes ranked 20 to 50 in India.

Completion of a landmark like the 20th Foundation day, prompted the founders to think about the next 20 years, and we decided to change ITM completely from top to bottom. But at first, take a look at what we were in 2010:

–       Completing 20 years

–       Most leaders over 60 years of age, specially those who started with ITM in the 90’s

–       Well tested Flagship course, the PGDM accepted by Industry and getting 100% placement through the thick and thin years

–       A much larger organization having grown from 120 students in 1991 to over 6,000 in 2011-12

–       From a single location to over 23 locations

–       From a single discipline of Management to be a full provider with Management, Engineering, Hospitality, Health Sciences, Fashion, Culinary, Financial Markets, Executive Education, and Doctoral Programs

–       A corporate Matrix structure with Functional leaders controlling various programs spread across many locations

–       From being ‘Small and New’ we became ‘Big and Ranked’

–       A natural feeling of comfort had set in.

The situation required a complete change to re-tool ITM and develop future ITM Grads for the challenges of Emerging India and we undertook this task from mid-2010 with a sense of purpose and dedication. What follows is a description of what we did to change ourselves, and get back the ITM Advantage.

 

We decided to do everything required to renew ITM completely. Some things we did:

–       Redesign all Systems and Processes within ITM

–       Redesign our own Campus ERP to reflect the renovated systems

–       Reduce overall median age of Faculty and Leadership at all locations. This required the retirement of many old hands who built ITM from scratch and hiring many young leaders, who are better able to communicate with the youth of today.

–       Renovate and re-furnish some of our older campuses like Bangalore, Warangal etc

–       Improve service delivery at all locations (This has brought ITM Warangal into the Top 50 in India for the first time in 2011 – MBA Universe rankings)

These efforts consumed us from 2008 onwards and are getting completed by last quarter of 2011-12

Changing the Product

The big remaining task is to change the product offering. We divided our program offerings into 3 categories as below:

Program

Mature and needs change

Change pedagogy as affiliated course cannot be changed too much

Relatively new, industry accepted and does not need a change for next 5 years

AICTE approved PGDM

Recognized by Association of Indian Universities as equivalent to a MBA

Has remained static since 1991

N/A

N/A

AICTE approved Engineering

Yes, University syllabi need change

We can change old style lecturing to Project-based learning

N/A

Allied Health Courses

N/A

N/A

All allied Health programs of ITM are current and industry relevant

Hospitality

N/A

N/A

As above. ITM Hospitality programs are rated tops in India

Culinary

N/A

N/A

This is a brand new state of the art program

Executive Education

Needs change

N/A

N/A

Fashion Design & Technology

N/A

N/A

Started in 2010, this program is highly successful

 

With this scenario, ITM decided to completely re-write the AICTE approved 2-Year Full time PGDM, and embarked on the ITM i-Connect Program in June 2011.

The approach chosen was unique:

–       Start with a clean slate and re-design all courses from scratch, and

–       Adopt a new Curriculum from academic year 2012-13 at all ITM PGDM locations.

–       Meet 300+ Business Leaders and Corporate HR Managers of leading Indian Companies and ask them what they would like to see in a 2-Year PGDM course

This exercise was undertaken by me with my colleague Prof Jayanti Das, and is still on going. We have consulted the following groups by Dec 2011, and meetings are still being planned:

–       25+ Deans and Directors in the ITM Group

–       7,000+ alumni

–       400+ Visiting Faculty

–       250+ Business leaders (We will keep meeting these people till we cross 300 in this category)

Methodology:

  1. All responses have been typed up and analyzed
  2. Significant views were extracted and cut-paste into different ‘buckets’ such as:
    1. Admissions
    2. Entry level profile of a candidate
    3. What to look for when making a new admission
    4. Pedagogy
    5. Number of courses and how to structure them
    6. Role of Internship
    7. Soft Skills and personality Development
    8. Analytical skills
    9. Presentation skills
    10. Decision making under uncertainity
    11. Coping with Stress
    12. Meeting “Employability” criteria of major employers
    13. Theoretical basis for the re-design
    14. Career choices and aptitude testing
    15. Leadership profiling
    16. Relative weight of Test scores, academic CGPA, Workex GD/PI scores etc
    17. Student engagement from date of admission till date of arrival at the campus
    18. Forming teams, which last through the 2 years in the campus
    19. Role of CFT (Cross Functional Teams)
    20. Role of MFP (Monitored Field Projects)
    21. Intensive review sessions
    22. Etc – the list of themes which emerged during this exercise was quite large!

The resulting document called “MBA Buckets” was put on the web as Google Doc and shared by all stakeholders.

Our brand-new “Radically Different ITM i-Connect PGDM Program” which will be implemented across all our locations from AY 2012-13, is the result of thousands of man-hours contributed into this project, by various members.

Before we give you the details of the i-Connect PGDM, let us see what CEOs and Corporate HR Managers said about many of the critical issues. We are not giving names to preserve confidentiality.

PGDM Demand & Supply

–       When demand outstrips supply we forget to listen to our customers

–       Product quality among Premier Institutes has suffered due to unplanned expansion in Seats and Locations

–       I cannot think of a sweeter spot in the History of India. The opportunity is boundless and only limiting factor is your ambition

–       There is a squeeze at the middle, and B-Schools are forced to migrate either upwards by increasing quality and rigor, or, be a bottom end commodity player

–       In this scenario product differentiation is the key

PGDM Admissions

–       Psyche of the student is to be tested for Attitude at Entry level

–       Reduce weightage for CAT Score

–       CAT Score is a poor predictor of managerial performance

–       Maintain diversity of the incoming student group

–       Place high value on EQ, and SQ

–       Thoroughness, Awareness and Sharpness – we look for these

–       Social sensitivity and Business Knowledge are important

–       Highly focused courses need to base admissions on Psychometric Tests and Aptitude Tests

–       3 criteria – Leadership Potential, Domain Skills, Attitude/Culture

–       Wear multiple lenses to gauge the aptitude of candidates

–       Well groomed, mobile, has positive aptitude, and is curious

–       CAT Score is a Macro filter and is not important thereafter

–       Training of Evaluators for GD and PI is very important

–       GD Groups need to be 6 to 8 and not larger

–       PI is very important and needs objective interviewers, since it is often the last stage at which an admission offer is considered

Student attitudes

–       a lot of here and now in the mindset of young students

–       DNA of the MBA student has to change with right mindset

–       Arrogance and a sense of entitlement is the bane of the high scoring candidate

–       They are prone to ‘convenient’ integrity

–       Not able to connect with reality of business

–       Students from non-metro’s are hard working and intelligent, but need communication skills and a language

–       They rattle what they know due to 15 years of wrote learning.

–       Fixed in their minds about job roles

–       They enter a college with pre-fixed objectives. They need to be stripped of these objectives to make them into leaders

–       Today’s generation is Green, more intellectually honest and does not tolerate fakes

–       Lack of humility and ‘know-all’ attitude are the major drawbacks

–       Assertive, demanding, ambitious, peer-driven, and easily bored

–       Googlised and socially networked

–       Social networking increases Social skills and decreases personal skills

–       Candidates come with date of Mfg, and date of expiry

–       Attitude of PGDM Grads creates artificial barriers that can seriously hamper business

–       Street smart, and stylish, but shallow in knowledge

–       Restless and discontented with focus on a pay packet

–       High performers come with a chip on their shoulders

–       Aspiration and ambition marred some times by arrogance

–       Plagued by insecurity – high competition and narrow thresholds of entry

–       Need to be more grounded, and ego deflated

–       A good job is defined with a salary but not always with the Job profile growth opportunity etc

–       Freshers with MBA have attitudes that do not let them soil their hands on actual work

–       A level head and a pleasant disposition will get you further in your career than any book smarts

How PGDM is changing

–       We do not want to be an IIM, but we want to be different

–       We go to IIMs only due to internal peer pressure of IIM alumni already with us. Actually candidates from 2nd tier B-Schools perform better

–       Branded B-Schools do not always give good candidates

–       HR is becoming more operational

–       HR has to marry Business at the Apex level

–       B-Schools must improve the EQ and SQ of their students

–       Main focus should be to equip students with different skill sets, and develop a positive attitude

–       It is 2nd Tier B-School Candidates that become high-flyers

–       B-Schools spread knowledge too thin and produce all-in-ones

–       Increasing uniformity of Metro City skylines is also prompting many B-Schools to be look-alikes

–       B-Schools want to deliver context-free education in their class rooms and then send the students out to learn context

–       The MBA has become a commodity and MBA Schools are like placement agencies

–       Branded Colleges have an edge

–       An MBA is like a journey, milestones differ with time

–       Objective of a B-School should be to stay current through its collaborations and industry interventions

–       MBA is actually putting a structure to what we have inside

–       Require Specialization to be chosen on entry

–       Requires students to form Cross-functional Teams on entry

–       Often require faculty to work in teams

–       Big component is experiential learning

–       Industry does not understand what the curriculum does, nor does the Curriculum understand what the Industry does

Leadership

–       Leadership should be discovered at entry level

–       Build emotional resilience

–       Respect comes from knowledge, not theoretical, but problem solving on the job

–       Choosing the next generation of leaders is the top concern of CEO’s

–       First thing to look for in a young leader is the desire to succeed

–       ‘Undying ambition’ can kill a company

–       A pure generalist cannot be a leader in today’s world. Some expert level domain knowledge is assumed, with a good understanding of the drivers of the business

–       Ability to recover from a failure

–       Setbacks are common in every life, and the ability to learn from them is critical

–       When young leaders develop intellectual arrogance, they lose the capacity to lead

–       Humility is critical

–       A manager becomes a leader by developing his soft skills and the ability to form and lead teams

–       Leader is inclusive and focuses on all stake holders

–       Leaders keep a higher purpose in mind

–       Leaders see what is good, quickly grasp the essence, create context for learning, communicate effectively, exercise power to bring together people and encourage development

–       B-Schools must build leaders

Skill Sets

–       It is time to evolve right skills and competencies needed by Corporates

–       Social skills are important

–       Analytical skills are needed early

–       Making sense from data is more important than arranging and presenting data

–       MBA student cannot be pardoned fro lack of presentation skills

–       For promotion or a new job, interpersonal skills set you apart

–       In a volatile economy, Employers want people who takes decisions under stress

–       Good listening skills are an indicator of High EQ

–       Skills and competencies are essential for high performers. Self starters get more space for development

–       Thinking and reasoning skills are very important

–       ‘Knowing’ skills are to be supplemented with ‘Doing’ and ‘Being’ skills

–       Companies hire for skills and fire for behavior

–       B-Schools polish students, rather than create managers

–       Be practical

–       Feet on ground and head in the clouds

–       Ability to push back

–       Relocate and be mobile

–       The art of polite conversation is an important managerial tool

–       Time Management skills

–       Career Management skills need to be taught

–       Professional adaption comes through an intensive monitored field project – Action Learning

–       Critical thinking and hindsight to analyse failure is important

–       Ability to question, the problem, convention, habits, tradition etc

–       Institute gives knowledge, which requires skills to be deployed, and these skills can be learnt only during an internship, which has to be long enough for some learning to take place

–       An Exam is only a memory skill

–       Train for skills more than knowledge

–       Organisations look to how diligent you are rather than how intelligent you are

–       More tolerant of diversity and change

–       Build up your adversity quotient

–        

PGDM Curriculum

–       We speak only about PGDM curriculum, which can be changed, and not about MBA curriculum (University affiliated) which is not changed easily

–       Application of theory to business – through Case study and internship projects

–       How organizations work, and how Management takes decisions is missing in the MBA curricula

–       Curriculum should include public speaking and Business Etiquette

–       Critical analytical thinking, decision making under imperfect information, etc are important parts now missing

–       Text books get updated only once in 5 years, while curriculum needs upgrading every 2 years

–       Curriculum must create stakes in EQ, Man Management, and People relations

–       Team building and team work should an integral part of the curriculum design

–       Course on Systems Thinking is needed

–       Western style MBA is for the MNC, what India needs is a PGDM for the aggressive SME company

–       Applied learning is fundamental to Business, but the application goes out of the window and learning goes on

–       More learning happens outside the class room

–       Curriculum needs to be adapted to current needs of Employers

–       Systems thinking, problem solving, use of innovation, rural market dynamics, globalization – these are essential inputs

–       Learning happens when peers discuss issues backed with data

–       There is need for Emerging market B-Schools to teach globalization from their own perspective

–       Strong academic engagement with business practice

–       Global immersion, semester abroad etc are useful

–       B-School success is where learning ends and organization begins

–        Collaboration with Industry is the real success story

–       MBA is a degree that over-promises and under-delivers

–       MBA is seen as a high-speed elevator, not a step ladder

–       Develop Eastern Philosophy which is truly our competitive edge

–       MBA should be branded

–       Should include a course on culture

–       Number of courses to be reduced – teach them in depth

–       A course on Business History is needed

–       The core MBA curriculum is no longer suited to meet the needs of Employers

–       Recruiters are demanding MBAs who are Team Builders, Better Communicators and Creative Thinkers

–       2 Company projects needed beyond internships

–       Choose specialization on day 1, and take electives for your chosen career

–       Markets are crowded with output of a very typical syllabus

–       Impart all round understanding of different disciplines

–        The Core MBA curriculum, while still being valuable is no longer able to meet the needs of today’s employers

–       Eliminate cookie-cutter concentrations and enable students to take a repertoire of courses to match their career choices

–       Minimum 12 and maximum 24 courses in a 2-year period, supplemented with long internships and projects

–       Incorporate experiential learning

One liners

–       Be an all-round Manager

–       Be hands-on

–       Ready to work from Day 1

–       Practice self-reflection

–       Create your own project

–       Faculty needs to know more than the book

–       MBA is like an ATM?

–       B-Schools polish students

–       Value system, Behaviour and Attitude standout as long term career builders

–       Hire for skills and fire for behavior. Some times promote for behavior

–       Not building a career, but building a life

–       Develop EQ, Understanding and Sophistication

–       Know practical applications of theories learnt

–       Subscription comes from the Heart and Compliance from the Mind

–       People join Organisations and leave Bosses

–       Invest in proximity

–       Practice Evidence based management

–       The Value of a job is linked to the glamour quotient

–       Recruit to Select

–       Adopt, Mentor and Select

–       Enjoy your work

–       Long term focus is missing

–       Entire Business of Education is the Business of Branding

–       Branding is the key differentiator for visibility

–       Students have to be producers of knowledge as well

–       When employers seek caliber, they look for the capacity to grow continuously

–       Working shifts can never be understood unless tried

Internships

–       Have to be longer than 2 months

–       2-month Summer interns are a joke

–       Need at least 2 internships of 2 months each

–       Long Internship + 2 company projects

–       Field immersion is the key

–       Field projects need to be monitored

–       Faculty need internships as well

–       Reflective journal made during Field Project are very important

–       Field projects need to be monitored and assessed by both the company and faculty

–       Institutes should offer Cross Functional Teams to Companies

–       Do not seek internships, seek real projects that cross functional teams can execute over a longer time frame

–       Adaption, critical thinking and hindsight are needed during an internship

–       Previous work experience is of no great value – many CEOs say this

We have had hundreds more responses in our “MBA Buckets”, too many to reproduce here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Radically Different i-Connect ITM PGDM

Based on these responses and intensive discussions among the 3 vital groups, viz Admissions Team, Teaching Faculty and Placement Team, the ‘Radically Different ITM i-Connect” program evolved. We will touch upon the various elements of this program

Stage I – Admissions

  1. All applicants will take 2 on-line tests
    1. Leadership profiling
    2. Career aptitude
    3. The results of these test scores are integrated into the Applicants credentials
    4. CAT, GMAT, XAT, CMAT, MAT etc Test scores are normalized
    5. Test scores have very little weight in deciding Call Letters. ITM will view high scores in Psychometric test and Aptitude Test as a better filter than a high test score (So do not worry if you scored less in CAT)
    6. The actual break up of the different parameters that go into an overall score for each applicant is published on our website
    7. Purely subjective evaluation like a PI has reduced weightage
    8. Experience beyond 2 years does not get added weight
    9. Through a web based real time evaluation system, applicants called for GD/PI will get a decision same day
    10. The process should be over in most cases by mid-April, with EMD accepted and Admission letters issued for all seats.

Term Zero – Pre-joining engagement

Applicants who have received admission offers will also receive hard and soft copies of required reading, including on-line materials, such as introduction to  Management Courses. This period Mid-April to Mid-June is Term Zero. These materials are for the student to keep even he or she does not eventually join ITM

Term I

This is a 7-month term starting in June 2012 and ending in December 2012. This is a very intensive period, with just 1-day breaks for Ganesh, Dusserah, Diwali and Christmas, during which 8 courses will be covered. Students make choice of specializations on day 1 of this term, and form cross-functional teams that stay together for the duration of the program. Team Members are from different concentrations and will be working together for assignments, Case Studies, and Internship projects.

Term II

This is the 6-Month long internship term. Features:

–       January 2013 to June 2013

–       4 weeks in Company followed by 1 week in the college

–       6 periods like this complete 6 months

–       Intensive engagement

–       Fortnightly Faculty visits and feedback at the work-place

–       Minimum 2 real projects

–       Cross Functional Teams are given to Companies

–       The Internship oversight is shared by the work place supervisor and nominated Faculty twice in a month.

–       Joint feedback is a part of the student’s transcript

–       Both the student and the company get a chance to know each other well

–       Progressive companies may rotate the students with projects in different departments, and even attach different mentors at different times and get a 360-degree feedback on the internee.

–       This initiative is the critical element that connects the Institute to Industry – this is the i-Connect that drives ITM PGDM and your future!

Term III, and IV – 6 to 8 Specialization courses

These terms run from July to mid-August, and September to December 2013. Placement preparation, acquiring domain knowledge, mock interviews, personality development, etc are important activities during these terms.

Term V – Capstone Project

This term runs from January 2014 to April 2014. Students bring together their academics, Industry experience and their enterprise together to produce the Final Project. A good grade in this is essential for graduation.

The total number of courses works out as below:

Term Zero                              2  (4 Half-courses)

Term I                                                8  Courses

Term II                                   6 (Practicum is counted as 4 courses, and 5 sessions                                                      of 1 week each as 2 courses)

Term III                                  4 Courses

Term IV                                  4 Courses

Term V                                   2 (Capstone Project counts as 2 courses)

Total Courses                         26 Courses

 

 

 

 

 

How is i-Connect different from the earlier PGDM design?

                                                            Old PGDM                   New i-Connect PGDM

Terms                                                 6 Trimesters              5 different Terms

No of Courses                                                36                               26

No of contact hours                           1296                           1080

Internship                                          2 Months                    6 Months

Projects                                              1                                  3

Faculty supervision of Internship   Nil                               Continuous

Intensive Workshops                        Nil                               5

Capstone Project                               Yes                              Yes

Specialization                                     2nd Year                      From 1st Year first day

Teams                                                 From same batch      Cross-Functional team

                                                            Of specialization        across Mktg, Finance

                                                                                                and HR

 

Placement activity

This begins in September and gets usually completed by January. ITM is known for untiring efforts to place the students and has record of 100% placement during tough times as well. Every Location has dedicated Placement Officers, backed up by Corporate Placement Leaders in the Head Office coordinating all information and bringing companies to interview on campus

ITM is a multi-disciplinary Institution

ITM has grown into a large multi-disciplinary, medium size, high quality educational organization with many campuses.

Location

Business School

Hospitality

Culinary

Allied Health

Fashion

Engg College

Exec Ed

Kharghar

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Dombivali

Yes

Yes

Oshiwara

Yes

Yes

Yes

Bangalore

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Chennai

Yes

Yes

Warangal

Yes

Yes

Hyderabad

Yes

Yes

Vijag

Yes

Nagpur

Yes

Yes

Yes

Raipur from 2012

Yes

Yes

Yes

 

Capacity

ITM Offers a choice of Specializations and locations, perhaps 2nd only to IIMs across India. The following is listing of AICTE approved Capacity

Location

Estd in Year

PGDM General Marketing, Finance & HR

PGDM Interna-tional Business

PGDM HR

PGDM Retail & Marketing

PGDM

Finance

PGDM

SCM & Logistics

Kharghar

Navi Mumbai

1991

240

60

(Semester in Europe)

60

60

60

(120 more applied for)

 

Dombivali

Mumbai

2011

60

60

Bangalore

1992

120

Chennai

1993

120

60

(Semester in Singapore)

Warangal

1995

120

Hyderabad

2011

120

Nagpur (under process)

2012

120

 

2 more universities in the offing

ITM has received a LOI in Gujarat for the first Vocational University in India, and also has secured another LOI in Rajasthan for a University

Calendar

Detailed calendar of activities, Term start and end dates etc is available in the “Radically Different i-Connect ITM PGDM” brochure.

Come to ITM and build a Life!

If you have applied to ITM, you have the right qualifications and mindset. You will succeed regardless of where you do your PGDM! We wish that you do that with ITM and join the ranks of our star Alumni many of whom are CEOs.

God bless!

 

Dr. P.V.Ramana

Chairman, and Founder of the ITM Group

 

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A Personal Philosophy for every one

I have started a rather long post about

– understanding philosphy

– how to develop a personal philosophy for yourself

I will be posting these in Sections spaced about a month apart. Here goes the first section. You will notice that the format is Q&A. The mor equestions YOU ask, the more I develop this concept of understanding philosophy as a set of expanding questions and answers.

The Judge and the Philosopher

(Family Conversations at the Dining Table)  An Introduction to Religion and Philosophy

Dr. P. V. Ramana Bungalow No.12, Gulab view, Chembur, Mumbai 400 074

Tel  + 91 22 25200363, Mobile + 91 9821065645, Email: pvramana@itm.edu

Why Philosophy?

Why do we have this urge to know or even understand our Scriptures, Epics, and Vedanta, and religion? I believe that this is primal need beginning with the urge to understand how the world around us functions and why people, other beings, and how the forces of nature operate.

In essence all the questions reduce to three basic questions:

–       Who am I?

–       What is this world around us?

–       Who or what is the great force which created me and this world?

Several thinkers from the oldest known written or transmitted records and oral traditions developed cogent and well ordered systems, which purport to give most of the answers. Some systems developed into Religion and Ritual, while some other systems remained as ‘Philosophies’.

Examples of Religion:

–       Egyptian practices revolving around the Sun God

–       Persian and Zorastrian systems built around the ‘Fire’ principle

–       Judaism

–       Christianity

–       Islam

–       Hinduism

–       Buddhism

–       Confucian Religion

–       Shinto in Japan

–       Druidic Gods and primitive religion in Old England

–       Norse Gods and the Valhalla system in the Nordic countries

–       Nature and ‘Spirit’ worship among American Indians

Examples of Phiosophy:

–       Bohemianism

–       Existentialism

–       Nihilism

–       Stoics of old Greece

–       Spartans of Old Greece

–       Theories of Socratis and his desciples

–       Mechanistic Theory of the Universe

–       Scientology

–       Rosicrucians

–       Etc

Cults:

These are one idea or one person centered social movements, usually, but not always, focused on doing good to the Society, by adopting a particular set of values, positive or negative, preached by that one individual. The idea remains after the person is gone. Examples:

–       Original Sai baba

–       Satya Sai Baba

–       Maharshi Mahesh Yogi and TM

–       Rajanish and ‘Free Love’

–       Ram Dev baba

–       Sadhu Vaswani

–       Ramakrishna Paramahansa

Some of our revered Saints in the Hindu Traditions touched core human emotions through their song and sacrifice,

Examples:

–       Kabir

–       Mira Bai

–       Tulasi das

–       Yogi Vemana

Some other could attract a great number of devotees who developed special belief structures around a principal God Vishnu, and these beliefs developed into sub-sects within the Hindu Tradition

–       Vallabhacharya

–       Madhvacharya

–       Ramanujacharya

The latest of such a system is the ISKCON movement, which has centred on the Love between Lord Krishna and his consort Radha Maayi

It is important to distinguish between Religion, Ritual, Doctrine, Tradition, Scripture, and Commentary, and Philosophy.

It is also important to distinguish between what is “written’ and what can be inferred by argument.

Why is it important to know about systems of religious beliefs and philosophies?

Personally I believe that every person should have a self-consistent set of ideas about how  he or she relates to the Society and the world around us, and that set of ideas should serve to give us a certain mental and emotional stability as we go through our particular but insignificant journey through life. I call this set of ideas and beliefs as a “Personal Philosophy”

Example of the elements of a Personal Philosophy:

–       I believe in God

–       I acknowledge that He is the true witness to what I do

–       I will not harm others by design

–       I will do only good to others within my limits

–       I do not wish to show any emotion publicly

–       When faced with any situation, I will think of what to do immediately and set about to do it, instead of apportioning or sharing blame

–       For me, to be seen as stable and equitable at all times is a virtue

–       It is my duty to share my knowledge with others

–       It is better to sacrifice what is mine than to grab what belongs to others

–       I will try to tell the truth at all times

Any one can add or delete to these set of ideas, for themselves as long as these ideas or consistent in themselves. One does not need a Religion to have a philosophy!

Questions:

This book is written as a set of questions, the main protagonists being a retired Judge and a Guru who visits the Judge frequently. I want all of you to send me more questions so I can introduce characters and ask questions and figure out the answers as well

Family Conversations : Section 1

Retired Judge Rao fidgeted and settled himself once again in the cane sofa in the outside verandah.  He was still irritated a bit, being ousted from the comfortable sofa-recliner in the living room, now occupied by a Priest and his Paraphernalia.  His wife Sakunthala is doing the “Satyanarayana vratam”.  It was way beyond his lunch time, and I guess retired persons like the dear Judge put more attention on a regular lunch and siesta than we do!  The making of a delicious lunch were wafting their flavors from the kitchen and inviting him in, while the drone of the “Mantra” chanting by the priest was keeping him out!  Sakunthala came out to appease him with a glass of Horlicks, and he barked out her “How many times in a month you are doing this puja ? There is a limit !”

Sakunthala gave him a look, which all but said –  “ You are incorrigible” and went back inside.  Judge Rao retired as a Supreme Court Justice nearly a year ago, and as a man wedded to principles of law, factual analysis and Justice, and due to the niceties of his position and profession, developed very few friendships.  Only now a days he is forced to engage in some conversations with the odd visitor.  Before retirement, to have a decent conversation with him was nearly impossible for his family and children.  The Hon. Judge is totally averse to ritual, Puja and celebration of religious days like “Ekadasi”  etc, which were so dear to his wife.  He argues – “Why even the Supreme God should be burdened with a body, wife, children , and problems in life ! “

This is all nonsense, he says. If the God cannot survive without offerings of food and clothes, what he can do for us? A God has to be different from ordinary humans.  That is why the scriptures say “Nirguna Brahma” – The one without name or shape is the true God.  The good judge has some ideas on this, but never had the time to do such reading.  He likes such ideas since they are logical perhaps.

He has never dealt deeply in philosophical ideas before. Only recently, after the casual friendship with Acharya has developed, he is tolerating and sometimes participating in philosophical talks. Today Acharya has been invited to dine with the family and take the “Prasad “offering of the Satyanarayana Puja.  Acharya has not arrived on time, adding to the irritation of Judge Rao.  His mind dwelt on the foolishness of old ladies who believe in Ritual and Puja, and squander money on gifts to Swamis, Babas and Puja fees to Brahmin Priests. ”Not only Ladies, even, some educated men also see God in photos, pieces of stone, and metal and ritual chants. Why they cannot spend their time during useful works for good of Society? This is nothing but a big fraud!“.  While musing so, the garden gate creaked, sounding the arrival of Acharya.

Sri Purushottama Acharya, a retired Professor of English Literature had recently settled in the same suburb. Casual meetings during Morning Walks led to a standing invitation to the Rao House.  Sakunthala likes his religious bent of mind and easy way of explaining complex ideas and thus he has become a regular visitor on Puja days in the Rao Household.

The judge almost got up from his sofa on seeing Acharya, but remembered his position (Supreme Court Justice!) and sat down abruptly again.  Acharya did not seem to notice this. Education and Culture do bring humility.  Listening to the sounds from living room he remarked  – “Sakunthala seems to be doing her “Satyanarayana Puja” today, What is the occasion ?”

“What is there? My wife believes that even if our dog has puppies, it is because of her God’s blessing !” replied the judge , showing a little resentment at the delayed lunch and disturbance to his set habits.

“Probably you do not believe that is the case“, Acharya said probing the Judge.  During this past year, he has learnt how to drive the judge into a conversation.

“You two are a piece from the same cloth” Rao retorted hotly expressing his irritation and anger in a few chosen words. Hearing the raised tone, Sakunthala peeped into the Verandah and welcomed Acharya “Acharyaji, since how long you are here? At least you could have told me he has arrived!“ this  last arrow at her husband. She hurried back inside, and brought him a glass of Buttermilk to drink. “It will take at least an hour more for the Puja to be completed. We can eat immediately afterwards”.

“One hour more! She is wasting her time.  Instead she could use the time to do some gardening, or grow vegetables which would be time well-spent and has a useful product “ Rao is grumbling while his stomach is growling!

Thus given an opening, Acharya started a conversation.

“Judge sir, I am watching your irritation all this time.  Do you really believe that the Prayer and ritual worship is a mere waste?”

“Yes! You tell to me what earthly use is there for self or society? This is all useless, utterly useless!”

“These prayers and Rituals for special days are in our culture and society since a very long time. Do you say that all our ancestors were engaged in a really stupid and useless ritual?”

“Yes, that is why our country is so backward! Look at Britain or America and see how fast they are progressing.”

“In your opinion, no one is wasting their time on prayer and worship in America or Britain?” Looking like a Defense lawyer, who has just caught the prosecutor in a major mis-statement, Acharya had a growing smile on his face.

“They have Churches and Prayers, no doubt” replied Rao, “But in India, it is the priests who are wasting everybody’s time.”

“I don’t see any difference in the work done by Pastors and Bishops and Imams in those countries and the work of our Brahmin Priests in India” replied Acharya.  Rao had to literally bite his tongue! “After all these years as a Judge, I am caught in the words of an ordinary English Professor!” – he thought. Trying to justify himself quite unsuccessfully he tried another trick “Yes, I agree they have also their beliefs and rituals, but not as much as we have.  We have to go really deep into this topic” – He tried his best to change the topic.

After ruminating for a minute, Acharya shot another  arrow at him. “What I want to know is this. Do you believe that in the Ritual prayers that your wife is so fond of, there is no God; or that this is not the way to worship God; or that God is not in this shape or form we worship; or even that God does not need any of this ?”

A logical and structured statement appeals to the legal mind of a Judge. Rao’s mood changed and he replied with a smile “Acharya, you should have been a member of the Bar! I want to ask you something. What is the use of a God?  Can we not lead our daily life without thinking about or worrying  about a God? Why do we need the concept of God at all? We can earn, eat, live and die absolutely without any God! Why all this? Cultivating a small coconut farm is enough for a peaceful life!”

“What do you get from a coconut farm?”

“Coconuts! Eat what you can, and sell the rest”

“What do you get from a Mango garden?”

The judge was a little offended that Acharya is asking him childish and elementary questions. But since he is quite accustomed to Defense lawyers leading a witness, he contained himself and replied.

“Mangoes! Eat what you can and sell the rest!”

“Coconuts, or Mangoes, or Apples, or this or that, are we satisfied with this?”

‘Satisfaction? Satisfaction?’ The judge questioned himself and spoke his mind – “Yes we can say we are satisfied for the sake of argument, but it is human nature that all of us will want to buy some more land, a little bigger house. This desire is basic”

“You can buy more land for a farm, plant more trees, produce more, and if then you still want more, you can buy more lands and lakes and estates. Will you be satisfied then?”

Judge Rao became curious now. Acharya is really leading up to something and deserves to be humored.  The leading questions continued.

“Suppose a man has got all possible fixed properties like lands and estates and farms and houses, will he be happy, contented and comfortable?” This has to be answered, thought Rao ‘No there is something lacking, what is it?’.

His grand daughter Vimi, an ebullient seven year old, came in with a flask of buttermilk and 2 glasses, kept them on the Tea table and ran back inside. That gave an idea to Judge Rao, pouring the buttermilk into the glasses, he said “only lands and houses are not enough, we need animals to give milk and food and labor.”

“Ok, suppose man acquires animals which give milk and food and labor also, will that lead him to happiness and contentment?” As Judge Rao lapsed into silence, thinking deeply about the issues raised by Acharya, a lull in the Puja chant allowed the cricket commentary from Vimi’s bedroom to seep into the verandah.  As Judge poured the buttermilk into the glasses, Acharya spoke again – “I will also add this, in addition all lands and all animals, man also acquires products of technology and manufacturing. Will he then be happy and content? Will his satisfaction be complete?”

The Judge looked at Acharya in askance at the last word “complete?”

“Happiness being complete means that man should be able to say for himself – I have no more wants, and the happiness, comfort and contentment which I have acquired along with possessions of lands, houses, animals, birds and artifacts of manufacture will always be there and will continue to grow”.

The judge smiled and said, “This is all right, but a man needs a wife and children!” Acharya did not smile back, but said a bit seriously “Is that enough? Or, man needs mothers, sisters, parents, and friends?”

This put the Judge into a studied silence again, as he kept thinking that man needs other men and women and children and so on to get ‘Happiness’. Acharya continued in a lighter vein “yes we also need Lawyers, and Litigants and Witnesses and Clerks and Judge and Jury too!” Judge Rao laughed at these words along with Acharya.

“What I mean is that Humans need all the needful things from the animate and inanimate world, also these categories are mutually dependent. Even the Animals and lands need men!”

“Yes indeed” said the Judge, all these categories depend on each other for continuance of existence and mutual benefit. “You are a Professor Acharyaji, why don’t you write a booklet on this subject?”

“This is not such a great thing. As a lawyer and promoted as a Judge at an early age, you have given your life to the study of law and justice. That is why you have not used your power of learning and analysis in this direction! Almost everyone with a smattering of philosophy knows about his”

“No, no, I do not like philosophy at all. Philosophers exhort you to leave the society and community and lead a life of detachment and celibacy. Whenever I used to get cases with Religious angles, I have tried to get them transferred to another judge or even another court! I never tried religious cases in my court!”

“I am surprised that a person of your stature is committing two ordinary mistakes in understanding what philosophy is. The first error is to think that philosophy teaches detachment etc. Philosophy is nothing but a search for truth. The second error is to confuse philosophy with Religion. Religion has to do mostly with a system of beliefs. The average man, who confuses these two is really mixed up!  Philosophy, and its study is quite distinct from Religion”

Judge Rao was not put off this curt observation. He never thought deeply about religion or philosophy. A life devoted to study of law and the constitution, he entered the judicial service very early in life. As a judge, he would not attend social or Religious functions or discourses as a rule, and would not even read the newspapers deeply lest they influence his judgment on the bench! Moreover he was never really interested in God or Religion or Philosophy and would be least bothered to read about the matter even if he had the time. But now after his retirement he is not unwilling to learn new things!

“Please explain to me a little more in detail about philosophy” asked the Judge bending a little forward to show his curiosity and attention.

When faced with any issue or topic, it is one of the first principles of Philosophy to ask the questions – why, how, when, who, what etc and obtain answers. For instance, we have just examined how the three great categories – the Humankind, the entire animate world and the inanimate world are mutually dependent! As we continue this inquiry along logical lines of thought, the set of answers will be the result of a “Philosophical” inquiry!”

The priest came in from the living room, and announced “The Puja is over, please come and get blessings and the offerings. His duffel bag was overflowing with fruits and sweets and the100 Rupee notes together with Betel leaves clutched in his hand showed that Sakunthala had already received her blessings!

“Oh God! At last the Puja is over, Acharyaji, I always thought Philosophy means the study of “Vedas” and “Vedanta”. Vedanta preaches that this world we know is not real; at least that is what I remember to have read about Sankaracharya and Ramanujacharya. Even Ramakrishna said the same thing!

” But your ideas are different ?”

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A Success Philosophy for the 21st Century Student – Dr P V Ramana

Often I have felt whether a MBA is needed for success in the big game of LIFE! I spoke many times to incoming batches in my own institution about this. I have tried below to briefly put up my thoughts to you:

1. We are living in an age of Excess Information. I will call this the EI age. This is characterized by abundant information universally available and the universal access to powerful search tools to find out what we need, when we need. EI is also available on the go, instantly at your command by a variety of devices – Cell Phone, iPod, PC, Tablet PC etc

What do we do with this veritable sea of information? I submit that all this information is to be used somewhere and it is your duty to make Information useful to you or some one else.

PROPOSITION NO #1:   INFORMATION MADE USEFUL IS KNOWLEDGE

2. Then what do we do with this knowledge? Knowledge without action is like a vessel from which no one drinks! Behavioural Scientists tell us that between Knowledge and Action there is a trigger called Attitude. It is Attitude that determines our actions, with or even without knowledge. Attitude can be Positive or Negative. You are helpful if you are positive, and withdrawn or even destructive if your attitude is negative. While a Negative Attitude almost always has bad consequences, a Positive attitude leads to Positive results more often than not.

PROPOSITION NO #2:  KNOWLEDGE WITH ATTITUDE LEADS TO ACTION. A POSITIVE ATTITUDE LEADS TO POSITIVE RESULTS. A NEGATIVE ATTITUDE LEADS TO NO ACTION, OR ACTION WITH NEGATIVE RESULTS.

3. All actions lead to consequences good, bad and ugly. Who is responsible? Of course You are responsible. Why? You had the information, you made this information useful and acquired knowledge. You had the action attitude, and hence You alone are responsible for your actions. Can you accept responsibility for all your actions? If You are such a person, you will notice many people start to gather near you, ask your advice, request your help and are at peace only because You are there to accept responsibility! It is evident that this is the making of a Manager.

PROPOSITION NO #3: YOU MUST TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR WHAT YOU DO AT ALL TIMES. THIS BUILDS RESPECT AND FOLLOWERSHIP AND MAKES YOU A MANAGER.

4. What next? My idea is that not only you are responsible for your own actions, but you are also responsible for the actions of all those around you, peers, colleagues, bosses, subordinates, family and friends. There is a good reason why this is so. Let us recount again: You collated the information. You made it useful and acquired knowledge. You have a Positive attitude. People trusted you and followed your advice and instructions, being safe in that you will take responsibility. Since you are in a position to impact the behavior of those around you, then You are responsible for them! If you are the source of Knowledge, Advice and Action, and hold yourself responsible, you become a true Manager!

PROPOSITION No #4: YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR NOT ONLY YOUR OWN ACTIONS BUT ALSO THE ACTIONS AND RESULTS OF ALL THOSE AROUND YOU!

5. When does a Manager become a Leader? The answer is when you can tell the Truth. The simple unvarnished tell-it-as-it-is kind of Truth. Why? Simply because in this dual world of deceit and corruption, people are hungry for Truth, and they will worship it when they see it. This capacity to tell the truth at all times is the hallmark of a Leader! We know it to be true, but do not practice it. Can you maintain a Friendship or nurture Love without Truth? Can a Liar face his or her spouse, or the children with respect and affection? Can we bring home-values into the work place? Business demands truth, since it is clear, the faster You know and disseminate the Truth, the faster can the enterprise act on it! Also Technology makes truth telling imperative, since the communication and information systems are telling the truth in real time, and instant cross checking reveals any Misinformation or a Lie in the system. If you tell a lie, the system will catch you! Truth leads to Trust, which is the significant mark of a True Leader. If you have it, then you can Manage and Lead

PROPOSITION No #5: TELL THE TRUTH AT ALL TIMES, SINCE TRUTH BEGETS TRUST, AND MAKES YOU A LEADER FROM BEING A MERE MANAGER.

It is time to tell a story now. I heard it myself, and believe in it. let historians debate if it actually happened. Here goes:

Marcus Aurelius is indisputably the greatest Consul of the Roman Republic that ever lived and served. He was elected Consul an unprecedented 3 times in a row, retired, and came out of retirement to save Rome and got elected another  3 times in a row. One fine  evening he was playing with his 5 year old great grandson, who asked him ” Great Grandpa, people call you the Saviour of Rome. How did you get elected as a Consul? I want to know since I want to become a Consul too!”

He replied thus – “The first quality to be considered for election is to have Veritas. This is a quality, an aura that surrounds a person who is known to tell the truth at all times. If you have it, then people will believe you without question. ”

PROPOSITION No #6: TELLING THE TRUTH AT ALL TIMES LEADS TO A QUALITY CALLED VERITAS, ESSENTIAL PRE-REQUISITE OF LEADERSHIP

Piped in this 5-year old  – “I got it. What the second quality? Tell me quickly”

You might wonder why a 5-year old is thinking of leading his country at that age. Do not forget that in those time average life expectancy was 30 to 40 years, and you could conquer the known world, as Alexander did, between the ages of 14 and 28. You have to start early!

Aurelius replied thus – “The next quality is known as Gravitas. This is the capacity to command and get people to obey you. Remember if You do not have Veritas, Gravitas is of little consequence”

PROPOSITION No #7: IF YOU HAVE VERITAS, THEN YOU CAN DEVELOP GRAVITAS, THE QUALITY OF GETTING PEOPLE TO OBEY YOU, IN LIFE, FAMILY, BUSINESS, WAR AND EVEN UNTO DEATH!

Pat came the next question: What is the third quality? If I have these qualities can I stand for election?

Aurelius replied: “These two are not enough. If Veritas and Gravitas are seen in the same person in great meaure, then such a person has Imperium, the Right to Rule. Only such persons, who are perceived by the public to have Imperium can stand for Election”

PROPOSITION No #8: VERITAS AND GRAVITAS TOGETHER BESTOW IMPERIUM. IF YOU HAVE THIS, YOU CAN LEAD YOUR FAMILY, YOUR BUSINESS AND YOUR COUNTRY TO GREATNESS, POWER AND PROSPERITY!

Needless  to say, the 5-year old is Julius Caesar, who became the first Roman Emperor!

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MEASURES TO FACILITATE INVESTMENT IN HIGHER EDUCATION UNDER CURRENT LEGAL FRAMEWORK

MEASURES TO FACILITATE INVESTMENT IN HIGHER EDUCATION UNDER CURRENT LEGAL FRAMEWORK

Draft Note by Dr. P.V. Ramana to the CII Higher Education Committee, prepared by the Task Force constituted on May 27, 2011

Task Force Members

i) Dr. P.V.Ramana – Chairman, ITM Group – Convenor

ii) Sri Dhiraj mathur – Executive Director, PWC

iii) Sri Ajay Kapur – Director, Higher Edu Initiatives, Oracle Corp

iv) Sri Amit Kaushik – Director, Educaiton Strategy, CISCO

v) Sri J V Ramamurthy – President and COO, HCL Infosystems

vi) Sri Sashikant Singhi – Director, Poornima Group of Colleges

vii) DR A S Khalsa – Director, iPer

Note: This is a first draft for internal circulation of Task Force members.

Submitted for comment, suggestion, additions and deletions.

1. FDI and FCRA: As per current law 100% FDI is allowed in education. For-profits are not allowed to get licenses from University Grants Commission and AICTE or under Private University Acts of different states. Hence the investment vehicle is often a Society or a Trust or Section 25 Co. As only Sec 25 Co can issue share capital, it is the most preferred medium for investment. Money flows into the operating non-for-profit from an Indian corporate, or a Fund in India or abroad or from a foreign collaborator. Wherever there is a foreign source direct as in case of most VC and PE investments, or indirect in the sense that the investing company has foreign shareholders or has access to foreign funds, the FCRA act comes into play. While all legal authorities and Big-4 Accountants are of the firm opinion that investment in a Sec 25 company being in exchange for a share subscription, does not come under FCRA, investors are jittery since the FCRA legislation has harsh penal provisions.

What is required: A clarification from Home Ministry that FCRA is not applicable for investments under automatic FDI in a Sec 25 Co against equity subscription, and that the Sec 25 Co receiving such investment is deemed to have fulfilled all its compliance requirements upon filing requisite RBI returns for inward remittance and issuing equity against such a remittance.

Action: Appeal to Home & Law Ministries

2. Can a Sec 25 Co issue shares to the public in an IPO? I have had some discussions with SEBI some years ago, when Sri Damodaran was SEBI chief. Some impressions gained:

a. Share issue at par is not a problem, and I was asked to file a RHP. Since lack of clarity, I did not do so

b. The real problem lay in the CCI formula for share valuation. Some opinion states that since no dividend distribution was possible, share of Sec 25 Co can only be valued at par. Others differ and say that a Sec 25 Co can be valued and traded at a value that reflects market demand and underlying business and asset valuation, and potential for growth.

c. If a Sec 25 Co can do an IPO, a vast channel for gathering public funds for Regulated Higher Education opens up. There is great appetite for Education sector shares, and this needs to be done

What is required: A clarification from MCA and SEBI, that a Sec 25 Co can issue capital to the public in an IPO or private placement, and that it will not lose tax exemption and not-for-profit status just because shares are valued above par. Any tax impact is in the hands of share holders, for Capital Gains. There is no dividend distribution and no taxes allied to a dividend payout.

Action required: An appeal to MCA and SEBI, and CCI for clarification and issue of a Press Note on this subject.

3. Bond Issue: There is talk in the Finance Ministry that tax-exempts like Societies, Trusts and Sec 25 Companies may be allowed to issue bonds. Can these bonds be traded? Zero coupon bond with a convertibility option? Credit rating for a bond issue? (CRISIL is rating Edu Institutions treating them in the SME Segment – ITM is CRISIL rated “A”, the highest possible in this segment). What is the security for the Bond Custodian?

4. Special Class of Companies for Regulated Education? There is talk of removing tax exemptions from Trusts and Societies engaging in ‘commercial’ privately financed ‘regulated’ higher education. The underlying thought process is the fact that many of these institutions have acquired huge asset base, and have proved to be a source of black money generated in the form of Donations and Capitation Fee. The obvious move forward is to create a special class of partially tax exempt companies on the lines of Sec 501 (c) company under the US Tax Code.

Suggested features:

a. Flat tax of say 10% on taxable surplus

b. Shares can be valued, traded and issued to public just like any commercial share issue, under existing SEBI regulations

c. No bar on shareholding resident, non-resident, foreign individuals and companies etc (At present a Sec 25 Co has no such restrictions)

d. No dividend distribution at option of the Co. Max limit of 10% on any dividends Action required: Note to be submitted to MCA, MoF and SEBI for amendment to Companies Act, and IT Act

5. Education as Infrastructure: Regulated Higher Education requires huge investment in Land and Building. Land requirement is onerous – Private universities need 10 to 25 acres in Metro and 50 to 100 acres in Towns and Rural areas. Thereafter at least 100,000 to 200,000 sft of built academic spaces are required. Total infrastructure budgets exceed Rs 200 Cr at a minimum for a modern first class university set up in the initial start up phase itself. While the government thinks nothing of annual grants of 100’s of crores for existing IITs and IIMs, there is no money for new institutions, and no safe way for any ROI on such investments made by private entrepreneurs. It is important to not ehere two comments made 10 years ago by a full SC bench in the TA Pai case:

a. The idea that education is noble and charitable is giving way to a view that education is a necessity and must survive by generating a required surplus

b. An academic degree is a private good for private gain, and not to be always considered as a public good for public gain!

Keeping this in view, it is eminently practical to declare Education as fulfilling the norms of infrastructure, and make it eligible for legal and tax treatment that is now accorded to Infrastructure.

Some required changes:

• Press Note declaring Education fixed assets as Infrastructure

• Permit Infrastructure companies to build and lease academic, administrative and hostel/residential spaces to the Institution, with such lease costs being eleigibel for cost recovery as part of tuition calculation by Fee Fixation and Review committees

• Lease rents to be a revenue expense

• Permit operations in long lease premises (greater than say 10 years) where academic space requirement is less than 50,000 sft, and waive land requirement in Metro cities

• Permit the institution sponsor to own the land & building and charge a lease rent to the institution or the program (This moves the Depreciation and Interest from a tax-exempt entity to a Taxable entity, and at the same time increases revenue to government as the lease rents are taxable)

• Enable Education Infrastructure companies to function like housing finance companies

• Allow Engineering and Technical institutions to be built in the compounds of large manufacturing and technology companies (Automobile, Machinery Mfg, Pharma, IT, Hotels etc) to integrate training and a working academia/industry interface

Action required: – Appeal to MHRD, University Grants Commission, AICTE, MCI etc – Appeal to MoF

6. A gradual approach to permitting for-profits to launch Higher education: Everywhere in the world including China, for-profit corporations have been allowed entry into this field, subject to the same regulatory framework, except that they are subject to tax. Is a graduated approach to this possible?

a. Permitting Sec 25 Co shares to be traded and valued by the market

b. Minimum Taxation on Trusts and tax-exempts, bringing them gradually to the same footing as taxable companies, dividend limits, prohibiton of dividend to promoters, etc

c. Allow PLC’s to sponsor Sec 25 Co as closely held. (They can merge financials and show earnings accretion in parent co, without actually taking money out of the tax-exempt domain. Increase in valuation will take place in parent co shares, not in in Sec 25 Co shares)

d. Treat Sec 25 Company as having a special tax status, while being on par with a PLC for raising capital, and a maximum fixed earnings distribution

e. Permit PLC to engage in regulated Higher Education field, just like in the USA All these are feasible and have been discussed by policy makers at one time or the other.

A concerted approach and pressure will make change happen gradually.

Any other angles to be investigated?

Please mail your comments to the core group first. Any comments posted in this blog will find their way into the final draft for consideration by the committee

Dr. P.V.Ramana

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Osteoarthritis (OA) dealing with OA with dietary supplements

OSTEO ARTHRITIS (OA)

I started experiencing OA pain in right knee since last 5 months. The pain crept up gradually to hip joint as well. This is a post giving details of how I am coping with this with dietary supplements only so far.

Caution: Painkillers are best avoided in OA, since they cause acidity, and hardening of arteries as well. Arteries can become so brittle that it is possible to experience uncontrollable multiple arteries ‘splitting’ and flooding the body with blood! This is the reason I chose to deal with OA with food supplements only, and NO DRUGS AND NO PAINKILLERS!

The supplements I am using:

Glucosamine with Diacerene – This helps to povide the aminoacids required in building new cartilege. Glucosamine is also a natural painkiller after continued use of several weeks. Doctors recommend life long use

Latest versions of Calcium intake – Brittle bone tissue is also a reason for abrasion and pain. Triple A Cal is a good source, as also Shelcal (Osteo)

New Generation Bio-Actives: These help mediate energy transfer required to build new protiens for Cartilege and sinovial fluid. I am using SAMMY which is a pre-curson to ATP and helps energy release at required sites. I am also using Cobasoft OD which is a bio-active version of B-Complex

Hyaluronic Acid: This is needed to build up the quantity of sinovial fluid in the knee joint. I am using Hyal Oral daily. Injections are also available

JoMo: This is a Florida based company supplying a liquid which has extra-strength ingredients such as Collagen, Glucosamine etc in Cherry and Pomegranate concentrate. The fruit concentrates are very antoxidants. Not available in India. can be ordered from http://www.jomo.com. JoMo stands for joints in motion!

Collagen: This is needed to build up the cartilege in the knee joint which acts as the cushion. Collaflex sachets of 10 gm are available at all chemists.

Collagen type II: There is empirical research to show that Type II Collagen is better to build cartilage.. Best source is Chicken sternum bones. Nit sold in India but available from USA f with trade name Encore Collagen II capsules.

Multivitamin Tablets: B-Plex Forte of Surbex Osteo are good

Antoxidant specific to OA: Cap GLA is available in India. GLA stands fro Gamma Ligneic Acid

Things not to do: Reduce walking and also reduce weight. No climbing of more than 2 floors at atime. Climbing up staircases puts maximum stress on the knee joint and supporting muscles!

Exercise: Simple exercises designed to strengthen calf and thigh muscles, and stationary cycle exercise.

The result is that I am going about with no pain and no restriction in knee joint!

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COMI et al fighting AICTE- Come together to separate only?

The latest on the AICTE front is that COMI which won a significant relief in Bombay HC in their WP 1335, has approached SC recently asking that the relief granted to AIMS/EPSI members – ie stay on operation of the AICTE Dec 28, 2010 notification, be extended to them also.

COMI members are PGDM institutes in Maharashtra who came together on the basis that the 3 landmark cases in SC – Pai Foundation, Islamic Academy and PA Inamdar hold good and accordingly they argued and won. They got the right to:

– Do their own Test and be exempt from CET

– Do their own counseling, and escape DTE CAP

– and do their own admissions

Bombay HC gave the relief asked for and asked them to submit to DTE and AICTE a Process Handbook detailing how they would do transparent and merit based Common Admission Process. – This is a permanent relief till the Inamdar judgement in SC is overturned, which is not likely in a long time to come.

Obviously members of COMI did not like to work together and wanted be on their own for at least one more year, hence their SLP in SC.

ITM has decided to stick with the Bombay HC order in WP 1334 and not to go to SC. This is because the HC has recognised that:

– There are no complaints against ITM since last 20 years, which is close enough to 25 years mentioned in Inamdar case

– ITM is a multi-state institution, with a number of B-Schools spread across 4/5 states

– ITM is already doing a transparent CAP based on CAT/MAT

My feeling is that SC will reinstate AICTE notification with modifications and COMI has to go back to HC and start all over again.

I feel that COMI has given up a permanent remedy for a short term relief!

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