Indian tweeps mock recognition for non-existent Jio Institute

Institutions of Eminence (IoE) status for the proposed Jio Institute starts Twitter flurry

Six higher education institutions in India were named Institutions of Eminence (IoE) by the Indian government. Indian tweeps can’t stop mocking the fact that the Jio Institute by the Reliance Foundation is one of them.

Never heard of the Jio Institute? No one has, it doesn’t exist.

The Jio Institute is only a proposed educational establishment. Tweep @mithileshy_ posted: “For those scratching their heads about #JioInstitute, don’t bother. Even Google doesn’t know.”

Hashtag #JioInstitute was one of the top trends in India, today. The institute does not even have a website. @AndyMaanas sarcastically commented: “Happy to announce that finally I am awarded a PhD from the eminent Jio institute. One can check more details on their website.”

The proposed institute belongs to Mukesh Dhirubhai Ambani, an Indian business magnate who is the chairman, managing director and largest shareholder of Reliance Industries Limited, a Fortune Global 500 company and India’s most valuable company by market value. Many have highlighted that this is a result of support from Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Tweep @cpimspeak posted: “You don’t need a campus, website, teachers, students, course material and a record of excellence to be recognised under ‘Institutions of Eminence’. All you need is to have the right politicians in your pocket! #JioInstitute”

However, the Ministry of Human Resource Development in India posted a public statement on Twitter clarifying it’s decision.

@HRDMinistry tweeted: “… please find herewith clarifications on commonly raised questions #InstituteofEminence.”

According to the document shared, four parameters were taken into account for judging the applications received for setting up greenfield institutions: a) Availability of land for construction of the institution; b) Putting in place a core team with very high qualification and wide experience; c) Making available funding for setting up the institution and d) A strategic vision plan with clear annual milestones and action plan.”

@akashbanerjee posted: “Clarification by @PrakashJavdekar on #JioInstitute being granted Institution of Eminence tag further clarifies some basic facts on India. Experience/track record doesn’t matter, as long as you can show the money and contacts – all doors will open for you.”

The status enabled chosen universities to get full autonomy and special incentives to project them as “world class universities”.

The other five institutes are the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bengaluru, the Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) at Mumbai and Delhi and private institutions – the Manipal Academy of Higher Education and BITS, Pilani.

The public institutions will also get assistance of up to ₹1000 crore (over Dh534 million) over five years.

@MahilaCongress tweeted: “Truly eminent! Amongst the six institutes that have been named Institutions of Eminence and will get government funds of Rs 1,000 crore in the next five years is #JioInstitute, which is yet to be set up by the Reliance Foundation!”

The Press Trust of India had reported on March 11, 2018, that Reliance Foundation was planning to establish a university for cutting-edge research and innovation. The government on Monday shared a statement on the merits of the Jio proposal.

Many Twitter users felt the decision did not make sense. @Adheesh2101 posted: “Next step: Modi government issues LIFE TIME ACHIEVEMENT award to Ambani’s child which is not even born yet.” And @CarDroidusMax tweeted: “Have Nasa and Unesco already certified #JioInstitute?”

Twitter user@aaptimist_ mocked the management quote system in India and posted: “People try to get seats through management quota. But Ambani has managed to get an entire institute through the management quota.

Waah Modi ji Waah! #JioInstitute”

Some felt it was unfair to age-old prestigous institutes in India, which are well known for their education. @AgentSaffron posted: “Its shameful that an institution like IISc Bangalore is equated to something called #JioInstitute, which nobody has ever heard of….”

And @Ms_Aflatoon tweeted: “For the first time in India’s history, studying in #JioInstitute and Manipal will be equally prestigious as studying in IISc Bangalore, IIT and BITS…. India will be full of ‘eminent’ scholars.”

Under fire for declaring the Jio Institute of Reliance Foundation, which exists only on paper, as an “Institution of Eminence”, India’s government on Tuesday clarified that the move was not final as Jio had only got a “letter of intent.”

Education Secretary R. Subramanyam also clarified that Jio Institute was yet to qualify for the tag of “Institution of Eminence.”

He trashed reports that Jio would receive a grant of Rs10 billion (Dh534 million).

“The government grant of Rs10 billion will be given only to public institutions ie. IIT-Bombay, Indian Institute of Science (IISc)-Bangalore and IIT-Delhi, Indian Institute of Science, IIT Delhi and IIT Mumbai,” Subramanyam stated.

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