… George Yeo quits following insult and political intrusions
Now Prime Minister Narendra Modi can make former TV actress/Education Minister Smriti Irani the Chancellor of Nalanda University.
George Yeo was a great friend of India, and his contributions to the country were recognised with the Padma Bhushan award.
Taking up the position of Chancellor was not a wise one in the first place as Mr Yeo was replacing Nobel Laureate Dr Amartya Sen, who had resigned following differences with the Government.
Mr Yeo had then described Nalanda as a “Secular” university but unwisely anticipated it would be an autonomous institution. With a communal person like Mr Modi as PM, particularly after Dr Sen’s sour experience, that was another mistake.
The result: not only was the autonomy eroded but he was not even informed of changes to the Board. That insult was the last straw.
Incidentally, he was among the key players in Singapore instrumental in the signing of the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) between the two countries.
That made it easy for mediocre Indian employees to make it to Singapore on temporary visas. It applied to those in 127 occupations, so almost everyone.
It enabled even people with mere ITI and diploma qualifications to find a footing in Singapore. Complete mediocrity in the name of foreign talent – these were guys who hardly knew the job, picking skills here, while not being able to communicate in English.
In effect, CECA shortchanged Singaporeans.
Here it appears there is some commonality between the Modi and Singapore Governments – neither has the tendency to apologise and make amends for their blunders.