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School to produce political leaders coming up

India’s first school for producing political leaders of tomorrow is taking shape in Kerala, opening up a career option for which education has never been mandatory, Ramesh Babu reports.

india Updated: Sep 20, 2012 23:47 IST
Ramesh Babu

India’s first school for producing political leaders of tomorrow is taking shape in Kerala, opening up a career option for which education has never been mandatory.

The Indian Institute of Political Management, coming up Thiruvananthapura-m, is planning to offer four masters degree programmes — political management, legislative affairs, strategic public relations and coalition management.

A brainchild of Kerala-born IT entrepreneur Vinson Palathingal who is based in the United States, the institute will be an autonomous body under the state higher education department.

“Starting with 20 students from the next academic year, the institute has tied up with George Washington University in the United States, where half of the three-year masters programme will be conducted,” said Vinson.

“Among the present crop of leaders, 70% belong to political families. It shows a dynastic tendency, which has to change,” said Vinson. “Admissions will be based on academic excellence and aptitude. The course fee is around R5 lakh, but financial assistance will be given to the needy.”

Vinson has the support of some fellow NRIs and a few business houses have promised grants.

What’s more, senior politicians and retired bureaucrats are on board to impart some lessons.