Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Rahul Gandhi and his dubious Cambridge degree

UPDATE: This post stands stands WITHDRAWN in light of the clarification issued by Cambridge University that Rahul's MPhil degree is valid and was indeed issued in 1994-95.

The New Indian Express which I had quoted continues to stand by its report. But I am satisfied by the clarification and no longer find the points raised in the post to be relevant.

Accordingly I see no point in retaining the post online. However, I have left the comments untouched :)

70 comments:

  1. Why would anyone do that...and isnt filing in wrong information in an affidavit illegal?

    Ankit Nagori

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  2. A relevant post, esp today! Trust you to bring up the integrity aspect, whilst everyone seems to be harping only on the money, bungalow, car aspect.

    It is too early to really find out an answer to your & Ankit's questions, but hopefully people should take this up even as a bit of activism.

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  3. The wonder kid, Rahul Gandhi starts with con and deceit. Typical of an Indian politician.

    Well ! this man is a PM candidate !!! I would say disqualify his application on grounds of providing wrong information.

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  4. Now, you have really gone easyon the kid haven't you? If it was someone else you would have gone hammer and tongs after him. But no, it's our dimpled Rahul baba.

    Sentences like "He may have decided to enrol for an MPhil to once and for all take care of that, which is fine. But, why lie about it? "


    and

    "If I were Rahul I would have come forward and said, "Look, I have never really been that keen on studies. What does one learn in a classroom anyways? I have had an education in what India really is - on the dusty streets of this country. I have what it takes!"
    "

    Really Rashmi-ji. WTF? Are you being sarcastic?

    And the last sentence, really - I have half a mind to stop subscribing to your blog feed now.

    "Or would he remain a man cursed by an accident of birth, burdened by the expectations of history, unwillingly carrying that load forward??"


    The man is a freakin' LIAR. and you mollycoddle him with such sentences?

    Since we're all being understated with our criticism here, i'll end by saying I'm disappointed with this blogpost.

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  5. Thank you RashmiJi for posting this. All we want is the truth. Even though I agree with Wanderer that you have been a little too soft on him, I would say that at least you had the guts to put it on your blog.

    Beware! the establishment might be after you now.

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  6. good article. I think even his father wasn't a graduate at Oxford.
    Whether he has completed his degee is neither here nor there. Neither did Einsten or Tagore if you go by folklore.
    But the bigger point is that he has fibbed. Which is not on

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  7. I kind-of like the guy and was wondering maybe the Dev. Econ. was earned by him in 1994-95 and another MPhil in Dev. St. in 2004-05. Whatever it is, I think he owes us an explanation in some form.
    There are too many politicians with ambiguous personal details going around.

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  8. Hear Hear...

    I liked this in your post...

    If I were Rahul I would have come forward and said, "Look, I have never really been that keen on studies. What does one learn in a classroom anyways? I have had an education in what India really is - on the dusty streets of this country. I have what it takes!"

    :) the ending is superb too...

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  9. The real question is, if its true why no one has picked up as a breaking news on our TV channel ??

    Are we being taken for a ride here ?

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  10. sachin failed in 10 th if i m not wrong. and that has made the least impact on his career.
    Same i guess would apply in this case.
    Gud that u saw it and shared it .
    But the post seems a bit sensationalised.
    Wud take more then guts to go out and accept the truth but i guess this would be nother tool for the media and politicians to play with and will keep them busy for nother couple of weeks.
    Life is beyond degree's.

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  11. All you need to do is imagine another of our future PMs Ms. Mayawati standing next to Mr.Obama, you will have your answers.

    These politicians wins elections, and they have what it takes do it. We need to get into this ourselves and then worry about half truths and stuff.

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  12. someone asked why media didn't pick it up? Media didn't pick up even the mysterious death of Priyanka's father in law. There was little news in TOI but no police investigation, no postmortem...Rajesh Pilot dies in Road accident. Madavrao Scindhia died..who picked up...Media is also corrupted....

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  13. A very relevant post indeed!! only time will tell whether rahul gandhi is true to himself.

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  14. Is it a case of hiding behind fancy international degrees? Or is he trying to play up to to the whole complex us Indians have about foreign universities assuming that by claiming to have studied abroad he automatically wins the respect of the people?

    Of course, i also read somewhere that when Rajiv Gandhi was dating Sonia, it was claimed that she was a full time student at Cambridge along with him, when in fact she was enrolled for a small part time course and not a full degree. Her credentials have also been glossed over when it comes to education.

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  15. Dear Rashmi,

    Thanks for sharing these details.

    I feel ashamed that even youths like Rahul Gandhi are so sorrupt.I was expecting some degree of integrity from younger politicians but they seem to be ahead of other corrupt politicians...

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  16. I think the most important point over here is "An answer to the question : Why did he hide/lie about his education details to the people of a country which he is aspiring to be the PM of??" If he isn't an M.Phil, it doesn't mean he cannot become a PM but what's the reason behind giving wrong information??

    And the answer should come from his side rather than the media and others taking it up...

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  17. The main question in the minds of "aam aadmi" or the 50% of total population that our business leaders and politicians are proud of should be-

    Why did Rahul Gandhi lie twice? Why didn't the media make him accountable?

    The question is not whether he is educated or not. The question is of integrity. And he thinks he can be PM?

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  18. well i have really no idea how to react to this...everyone lies at some point of time in their lives. i thing this quote can throw some light on the issue ...

    Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with the important matters. ~ Albert Einstein

    so i think i will listen to mr einstein...

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  19. "He may have decided to enrol for an MPhil to once and for all take care of that, which is fine. But, why lie about it? "

    Oh! that's a tough one Rashmi, but let me try....hmm 'coz he is a POLITICIAN, and in case you have not noticed politicians LIE A LOT, esp. about things that they think would increase their chances of getting elected. ...or are you suggesting we are supposed to judge this guy on different standards because he is young and looks sphisticated and well educated.

    In times when a person (Jagdish Tytler), who had instigated mobs to kill innocent people of another community but has been given a clean chit by our “premier” investigative agency ( which BTW is nothing but a pawn in the hands of whoever is ruling) and to top it all has been given a ticket to run in this year’s election, by the same party which your “…hopes, dreams, aspirations” aka Rahul Gandhi represents, Don’t you think we should have bigger moral, ethical and integrity related questions of him than whether he had passed “National Economic Planning and Policy” course and how legit his M Phil is?

    And don’t you worry Rashmi, many of the media in print and TV will eventually pick up on this great piece of investigative journalism that you have highlighted and give it the airtime and print space that such an important national issue surely deserves...Please don't fool yourself into thinking that you are the only smart journalist around...

    Enough with the sarcastic comments, I think the point is better posts are expected of you since you have set good standards earlier.

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  20. @ Ashish and Rashmiji

    The issue is not of passing a course or being educated or not. What Rashmiji has highlighted here has to be seen in the context of what do we expect from somebody who wants to be PM of India.

    Why is he lying about something as important as his education and what is with this "Raul Vinci" thing?

    And yeah, you can get all teary-eyed when you see Obama and say how cool he is.

    But can we really trust a person who is not willing to come clean on his Italian passport, his name "Raul Vinci" and his fake degree?

    That matters because we choose who rules us. A liar or someone with integrity.

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  21. Perhaps most would dismiss this for being a rightward leaning blog, but check the date - he brought it up on 3 May, 2008.

    And why should we accept that Rahul has an almost innate right to the PM's office ?
    And all of the Barack Obama comparisons are obvious media fabrications. Now you realize that our media might not even be close to being the "custodian" of truth it claims to be.

    PS: @ashish - exactly the point ! When you have Jagdish tytlers running around the legislative and when nearly 35% of the population is illiterate, we dont really care if a candidate has a degree or not. So, when lies even in matters like that - can you imagine the levels to which he's ready to stoop if pushed into a corner ?

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  22. Rahul wins in the race of politic corruption...... I too had a lot of respect on him, and was expecting him to lead India... but my wishes were just castles in the air..

    But Rashmi, why is nt this highlighted in the media? Is one of our four pillars so weak and corrupted to take up this issue...? Rahul you need to understand something... education is not just your degree... it is more than that.. and you have proved yourself as an illiterate now....

    Politicians... whether young or old or the same.. they flock together... we dont need any more politics... now...... will we get any leader without politics in his mind? ( coz.. politics is equal to corruption)

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  23. I tend to agree with Vivek...The "larger issues" seem to be sensationalised and idealistic...Name one politician who has never lied, never mis represented any information, or doesn't have any "dubious" activity to his name...While we dont need to endorse his lie, we dont need to exaggerate its relevance to his character or capability.

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  24. There is one crime for which there are no mitigating excuses - that is perjury. One cannot be allowed to get away with telling lies under oath. He deserves jail-time and total ban from all public office in the future. (Homicide, sexual assault, etc. can all have mitigating circumstances.)

    If Rahul Ghandy was getting a salary for the year 2004-2005 as a Lok Sabha MP representing Amethi whilst he was simultaneously in Cambridge, UK, failing to prepare for his exams and failing to submit a thesis for his MPhil, then has he committed another fraud?

    Or did he hire some duffer to do the degree in his stead while he was busy partying in India and his doppelganger Raul Vinci was not upto the task of completing the course?

    Sonia Ghandy was never a student at the Cambridge University. Her affidavit is a lie. She attended a language crammer (now defunct) located in the city of Cambridge to learn enough English language to work as a nanny/bargirl/etc.

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  25. Would he represent our hopes, our dreams and our ambitions?

    Why would he? Honestly, WHO is he? Has he made any mark by himself in this world, or is he still reaping the bahu, beta concept prevalent in Congress and largely in India? Ask yourself. A person who hasn't proven himself, who has lived abroad most of his life, is is living under the shadow of his dead father and all-powerful mother - does he really deserve this much attention? Is it fair to call him the future prime minister of India just coz he is the son of someone?

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  26. Nice Post Rashmi!!
    This is indeed quite a revelation...I wonder why media hasnt picked this issue length and breadth.. n how BJP has also neglected this?

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  27. Very Very Relevant Post! Lots of things you've pointed out would have remained "obvious"
    Fantastic Florish of a Finish too! :)

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  28. There was some hope that the younger junta entering politics are going to bring in some change. The first crack on that hope was Varun Gandhi. He has behaved worse than a seasoned politician.

    I still have not lose hope on Rahul Gandhi. Lets see.

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  29. Great post, our politician(even the so called chosen ones are master of fake degree and corruption.

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  30. this post sums up our Indian political scenario proving the fact that education is a handicap for a politician

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  31. It is amazing to see how many of us here implicitly accept that he is indeed going to be our prime minister some day!! It is a shame that the largest democracy of the world chooses its highest leaders out of a single family. It has been 60 years now. I think the nation has paid enough due for the services of Nehru family. Why can we not elect some like Dr. jayprakash Narayan. He will stand as tall as Barack Obama( since many people brought that up) and not because he is educated but because he has integrity and conviction.

    It is a shame when we sigh and give up hopes because we, dammit, we are the ones who make them. We, vote. We, influence our societies more than them.

    It is upon us to see that Rahul Gandhi does not become PM if he has not the ability and that person becomes who has.

    We blame the politicians but I blame ourselves equally. A democracy does not function well when its people are asleep. It is "by the people" first of all.

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  32. Dear Rashmi,

    I am surprised and shocked by the nature of post. May be it has served its purpose of hyping issues and clouding the real intent.

    Some of the glaring ommisions in the post are:

    1. Firstly how did this journalist get hold of the marks sheet of Rahul Gandhi. Under the data protection act it cant be accessed by outsiders...so i strongly suspect the nature of the marksheet

    2. Education is not a criteria for serving the people, but what is more important is the intent to serve and i dont see any wrong in Rahul Gandhi's approach to it.

    3. India is much more than the cosy confines of our offices where we sit out and belt out such articles. Different regions of India have different issues and rightly so Rahul like what Advani did and Vajpayee did earlier to understadn these problems. Again i dont see any fault in this

    4. Political leadership is all about making decisions, they are and can be informed by various advisors - hence the issues of maintaining gorund vis-a-vis Barack Obama rest be assured who ever the PM is he/she can do it.

    5. Casting doubts and slagging a famour surname of India politics, doing so you are misleading the youth of the current generation who lap up even things which are unture. Hence i would suggest you to exeercise some caution.

    Cheers
    Ashwin

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  33. like his father, he too appears to be a reluctant prince on whom greatness is being thrust upon.

    this report got a lot of people wondering why he had to bluff since educational qualification is not(sadly) a requirement for candidature.

    theories are being floated around about why he did it-some of them rather far fetched, i'd say - like he doing it for the benfit of the swiss bank to open an acoount there!

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  34. @Str8 Talk


    When former President A P J Abdul Kalam said Indians should build a knowledge society to achieve our national aims of economic transformation and world leadership, he did not realise that some would try to take a shortcut.

    Rahul Gandhi, as Express reported this week, took a different shortcut to fulfilling Kalam’s dreams. His nomination affidavit to the Election Commission says he received an MPhil in Developmental Economics from Cambridge University
    in 1994-95.

    He made the same claim in 2004. Cambridge University, however, says that he was registered for an MPhil course in 2004-2005 (yes, we do not know if he even completed the course), and that it was not in Developmental Economics but in Development Studies (one of the four papers he took was titled “Developmental Economics”).

    He also failed one of the subjects, National Economic Planning and Policy. This is not surprising for a man who can’t even remember what degree he’s sitting for. You would hope that a possible future ruler of India would try to master this paper. Maybe Rahul did not try hard because he believes in free markets (but if that is the case, why did he take this course in the first place?). So he didn’t do the MPhil out of intellectual interest, but to pad his CV with a respectable academic qualification, having flunked out of prestigious institutions in India (St Stephen’s) and the USA (Harvard) before collecting a degree from a college in Florida, a state known for having the best “party schools” in America.

    Why would Rahul Gandhi falsify his CV? One reason: maybe he does as his Mum advises.

    After all, she too falsified her affidavit by claiming to have attended Cambridge University, when all she attended was a language school
    in the town of Cambridge (she attributed it to a “secretarial typing error”).

    But Rahul has not heeded his Mum’s repeated advice to take on more responsibility in government, so we can count that explanation out. Maybe he has a girlfriend somewhere (and in all fairness he should publicly reveal her name, so that we know the name of a potential prime ministerial candidate 20 years from now), whose parents insist on an educated son-in-law. But since youngsters today don’t listen to their parents, we can discount this theory. Maybe he thinks you need an MPhil in Developmental Economics to open a Swiss bank account.

    The only plausible explanation for Rahul’s mysterious MPhil is that he thinks it will give him an edge in Uttar Pradesh during the elections. This is not as far-fetched as it sounds. At this point, the two states with the most exciting races (in an election which everyone accepts will give a bits-andpieces Lok Sabha) are UP and Andhra Pradesh. UP is more of a cliffhanger because it has 80 seats and it is a four-way contest which, of late, threatens to become a twoparty fight. This is because of the other young Gandhi, namely Varun who, according to Outlook, falsely claimed to be a graduate of the London School of Economics, and whose speech against Muslims remains an issue in the Hindi heartland (as opposed to the Congress party’s attempts to pacify shoe-throwing Sikhs in Delhi and Punjab).

    UP Chief Minister Mayawati has played along with the BJP’s none-too-subtle attempt to polarise the electorate by jailing Varun under the National Security Act, attracting those voters he repelled to her party, the BSP. Suddenly, the Samajwadi Party’s Mulayam Singh Yadav does not know what has hit him, other than the fact that he is being end-played. The panic is evident in the squabbling in his party between trusted lieutenant Amar Singh, and key western UP party leader Mohd Azam Khan. Mulayam would not have been pandering to Azam Khan if he did not feel queasy about Muslim support of late.

    And while Mulayam is being end-played, the Congress is being squeeze played. Rahul, who is in charge of UP, had put a brave face to the cavalier way in which erstwhile allies have treated his party; he said the Congress would contest on its own in UP and Bihar as it was time to build the party in the Hindi heartland, necessarily a long-term project.

    Yet the Congress is non-existent in UP; it may not win any seats other than his or his Mum’s. In Bihar, recent Congressman Pappu Yadav and Jagjivan Ram’s daughter Meera Kumar are said at least to have realistic chances of entering the Lok Sabha. In UP, not only does the party not have its house in order, it lacks the mortar and bricks to even start construction of its house. Rebuilding the party in UP is not just a long-term project, but a very-long-term project.

    Perhaps Rahul’s phantom MPhil is intended for just that: to build the party. After all, it makes him look more respectable than rabble-rousers like Mayawati or Mulayam.

    Picture the average UP voter, entering the polling booth and thinking: “Rahul is an MPhil. I will vote for Congress.” I can’t picture it either. Obviously, if Rahul had the intellectual stamina to sincerely pursue an education, he could have added to his knowledge, he could have trained himself in rigorous thought, and he could have combined that methodological thinking with the experience his privileged position provides him, and come up with a sensible and practical vision for India. Who knows — he could have convincingly preached the knowledge society and become as popular as Dr Kalam.

    Instead, he took the shortcut

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  35. @ Zobin

    Again you comments are far fetched.

    1. Quoting Ex President Kalam does not mean that every educated politician or educated and articluate person have in them to serve the country. Had it been so my friend our society would have changed adn evolved for the better.

    As for Rahul Gandhi: rather than going to the details of his educational qualification (if indeed they are false, let the law take its own course and it will take its course). In my comment i have raised issues on how the document produced can be dubious.
    Even if we assume it is factual, there is no co-relation between educatiaon adn the intent to serve the peoole.
    In the same way edication and being articulate which most of us are, still are falling prey to the ills of the caste system: why are are who sit in our AC offices and take moral high groun don certain issues, cave in to others in the name of tradition.

    Let us take a holistic approach to all these issues. Also remember education is just an enabler and not a absolute.

    Also, i shall not stoop into castigating ones character like eihter you or the blog is trying to do on any individual, as that is not the cluture i haev been brough up with, hence i will not go to answer some of your cross references on Sonia Gandhi. I guess i rest my case here.

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  36. @Str8 Talk

    Unfortunately, I am not one of those sitting in AC Offices because I am a student who has to work towards his future and look for jobs in the harsh summer of june.

    Secondly, we expect more from our leaders. To change the society, to make our national parties [both Cong as well as BJP] and regional leaders act and bring more transperency and accountability. Hence, we expect leaders to be an inspiration or at least get the basics right. Why lie about your degree then? And why not question other MPs [Sonia Gandhi]? Why not question Vaun Gandhi? I can understand you wanting to limit the scope of the discussion to rahul and not other member of the Gandhi family? But questioning the right to ask valid questions based on hard facts is a little too far-fetched, isn't it?

    Thirdly, the issue is not "what" Rahul Gandhi's education qualifications are. The issue whether his credentials are genuine or not. If a legal document[proof of education] submitted to a constitutional authority [election commision] by an MP [Rahul Gandhi] is dubious and that too with proof after the University [Cambridge] comes forward with a statement that there is no such degree course offered in the university, then is it castigating an individual.

    If I and people like me, who slog for years studying and working hard, want to lead a better peaceful life and expect the leaders to be inspiring or at least not lie about their basic credentials, then is that castigating?

    My culture is to question what is wrong and contribute to the best of my abilities to correct it, as a citizen. Whether it means fighting communalism or fighting lies, I will do it in a peaceful way by being a part of a discussion like this. Is this castigating an individual?

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  37. @ Zobin

    I am open for the larger debate, but i guess this is not the appropriate medium or the forum to do so.

    Precisely the point you haev raised on the issue of verifiable education qualifications of Rahul Gandhi. My post has debunked the article becuase of many loop holes and the most important one is that the document on which the post is based in my opinion is false and doctored.

    I have studied in UK and currently live there, i have done executive education program from Cambridge university and i do know very well the process involved in accessing information. Hence my proposition to the author was to exercise caution if he or she does not have verifiable information. If the author is so hell bent on the truth, she should have asked Cambridge university to issue a press statement confirming the document she has is true in letter and spirit.

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  38. @Str8 Talk

    And since you asked for proof. Here it is.
    The press release from Cambridge University [here- http://bit.ly/37Qz] that contradicts Rahul Gandhi's election affidavit [retrievable from Election site- http://eci.nic.in/] says everything.

    An entity no less than the Cambridge University Administration itself has gone on record on 11th October 2006 to state unambiguously that his MPhil was in “Development Studies” and not in Economics as has been claimed.

    Misrepresentation #1 - The official copy of Raul Vinci’s transcript states that he read for an MPhil in “Development Studies” and not in “Development Economcis”.

    Why is this significant ?

    It is significant because these are two different programs. MPhil in Development Studies is administered by the Development Studies Committee at Cambridge.

    There is no MPhil in Development Economics at Cambridge. There is a MPhil in Economics.

    Now this is no small error. One normally doesnt forget what one’s graduation is in be it a BA in Political Science or a B.Tech in Chemical Engineering.

    So is it carelessness, amnesia or a freudian slip that Rahul Gandhi was so casual about providing the details of what exactly his MPhil was at Cambridge ?


    Misrepresentation #2 - All 3 official copies of his transcript (2 physical and?1 electronic) state that his MPhil was awarded during the years 2004-2005.

    This inconsistency between the transcript and the election affidavit may or may not be significant.

    But here is the rub on the question of competency. The transcript details Raul Vinci’s academic performance which raises pertinent questions on his fitness to be a candidate for the office of Prime Minister.

    The MPhil Development Studies program requires 4 full papers to be completed and it lists 60% as a pass, 65% as eligible for an entry to PhD and 75% as a Distinction.

    Raul Vinci a.k.a Rahul Gandhi while not earning any distinctions in any of the 4 papers barely managed an overall pass percentage of 62.8%.

    But the real shocker is in the Paper on “National Economic Planning & Policy” he scored 58% which is not even considered a Pass.

    Is Rahul Gandhi so careless or ignorant of what exactly he studied that he could not even remember to accurately state his MPhil Program in his Election Affidavit ?

    What respect does Rahul Gandhi have for the electoral laws of the land if he could not demonstrate the basic responsibility of ensuring that the facts in his election affidavit were accurate ?

    What real competence does Rahul Gandhi have to show by way of his readiness to be a candidate for Prime Minister when his academic performance on a crucial subject like National Economic Planning did not even make it to the Pass Grade ?

    If you want to, then we can take this discussion elsewhere. If you are still willing to defend Rahul Gandhi, you can verify the authenticity of the links and documents that have been mentioned in the post as well as the links. I rest my case here because I believe that enough reason and facts have been provided to convince any rational Indian to think twice about candidates running for elections or worse having dreams of becoming PM. And this is true for any candidate, whether its a national party or a regional party.

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  39. Rahul come'on, stand up and defend yourself... I know politics and college degrees are miles apart when it comes to coalescing both of them...

    But a serious question has been raised on your integrity and character and this can be a stumbling block in your career ahead ; something more serious than your "dubious" certificate...

    You are the best substantiation of youth taking the responsibility of taking India forward. we all look up to you and you provide inspiration for millions of upcoming youngsters with fire in their bellies to work for the development of this nation.
    But such an incidence will not only harm you but also the nation as the nation will lose out a major chunk of motivated youngsters.

    So it is my earnest request to clarify it...or atleast file an apology...even that would go a long way in removing this slur from your character

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  40. Hi Rashmi...

    I am nt sure if u'd even be bothered to check through this comment.. but then off late i cant help but say that i have come across some real weird stuff written on Rahul Gandhi..
    really dunno wats fr fact .. nder blog post which talks of similar stuff is http://karsewak.blogspot.com/

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  41. @Zobin

    Allegation has been made by the journalist and i still beleive that there is no officeial word from Cambridge University either the author of the blog or the journalist has provided.

    The data protection rules are very clear that - no individual can get hold of this information unless it is for the purpose of job or education and a request has to be made by a competent authority. Also the candidate should agree that his transcripts can be made available to those requested.

    Your links really dont substantiate.

    As for becomming a PM, in my earlier post i have made it very clear. the sort of degree or qualification one gets is not a criteria for public service. It is the intent and the conviction to serve the people that factors in for being the PM.
    Political leadership is all about making decisions, that to if it is the PM: it is all about taking right decisions. There can be n number of experts appointed as advisors on every speciality suject - which is what happens in reality. Thus my point Rahul even if assumed based on the dodgy document quoted has scored less does not in any way be anay inferior to take political decisions that are in the larger interests of the country.

    I am not making these points just to defend rahul Gandhi alone. IN my view edication is just an enabler and types of qualification is no way propotional to the type of leadership one can provide. Atleast i have not come across any leadership theorty that links this. Politics is all about feeleign the pulse of the people and painting the vision that is important for India and Indians.

    Hence i rest my case on both the points.

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    ReplyDelete
  43. @Str8 Talk

    Choosing to conveniently ignore the evidence can only mean that you have a soft corner for Rahul. If you are really interested in more facts and clear evidence then this link here can lead to the right person who actually has evidence- http://bit.ly/CM5j5

    And before you dismiss this as a propaganda site, make sure you ask the blogger (Offstumped) about the evidence.

    Secondly, either you didn't read what was written or you chose to ignore what was written, advanced degree is not the criteria for being PM I agree, but what can we expect from somebody who has been lying about his degree. Why this desperation? And why this double standard and biased reporting by the Media? If rahul sneezes it becomes news, but if his degree is fake or if poeple have raised some questions, its not?

    For the sake of transparency and integrity, Mr. Str8 Talk, we have to ask some Str8 questions to those who are being projected as PM material.

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  44. @ Zobin

    I have read Offstumped and various other blogs on the issue as well as contacted Cambridge University who have confirmed to me that Rahul Gandhi indeed passed in the year 1994-1995.

    At this point i can only say so much, as i have requested cambridge Univerity to confirm in writing what they told me on phone.

    The university would have to go through the data protection rules and before it can send me a official written response, they need to get the consent of Rahul Gandhi as is mandatory. Which is one of the reasons why in the first place i raised suspicion on the issue of validity of the marksheet cited on this blog, Indian express journalist, and various other blogs.

    On the issue of asking Str8 questions, i have no problems with it. The issue i have in the pretext of asking Str8 questions, one should not make insinuations and character assasination. Person in question is immaterial.

    Internet as a medium is very powerful in this age and day of technology and increasingly the urban population have taken to off stream media like blogs as a source of information based on which they shape and frame their opinions. Hence give this great power, it is at least reasonable to exercise some caution and responsibility before we write or in this case make insinuations.

    To be very true Tim Berneer Lee the inventor of world wide web had indeed predicted some of these ills of internet medium.

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  45. @Str8 Talk

    You can ask Offstumped about the proof he got and may be you can compare your proof and his to quench your thirst for proving someone innocent or guilty.

    The very fact that the media tries to highlight selective issues and becomes the judge and the jury on other trivial issues, makes me think that how come this wasn't on the radar of the media? If someone has raised an issue and said that the so-called "future PM" has lied about his degree then it ought to be reported. Selective reporting is one of the main issues here. Any rational person can see that our media indulges in selective/biased reporting. Isn't it?

    As far as the whole "exercising caution" thing is concerned, this issue is too "out there" to be ignored. How come people have a problem when "Raul Vinci's" or "Rahul Gandhi's" degree becomes an issue, but they don't question the motives of a media house when they "allegedly" threaten a blogger like Chaitanya Kunte. Yes, the allegation is that NDTV threatened Chaitanya Kunte after he published a blog post criticising NDTV and specifically Barkha Dutt's reporting during the Mumbai attack. Here also the problem is similar. People are selective about giving advice to bloggers to exercise restraint. And no, I am not talking about you, this is addressed to everybody who is concerned about blogging and the responsibility that comes with the power of blogging. Isn't it?

    Why don't we wait for your Cambridge proof to arrive? And lets take this to your blog, if you have one.

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  46. http://renjithmn.wordpress.com/2009/04/19/general-election-2009-bjp-vs-congress/

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  47. Dear Rashmi,

    Kudos to you for posting this... but somewhere in the entire post I felt that you have been let down by your own expectations- meaning- you were really looking upon Rahul to lead India some day and this naked truth has left you somewhat emotionally hurt.

    Well I never admired Rahul so my thousghts may appear biased. As a matter of fact, today we need a leader who is able to face the truth and can withstand criticism and do not run away out of fear. Here is the difference between so called secular young brigade of Congress and so called religious young brigade of Saffron party. Atleast Saffron leaders have candidly confessed about their ideology whereas Rahual doesn't seem to have any apart from playing blame game politics though everyone does so but in lesser extent. I have never seen him raising any real issues apart from blaming NDA and LKA or harping the slogan like his late father Garibi (Read Garib) Hataao. In case of Mayawati or Mulayam, they have been honest about their educational background and every politician hides his wealth so as Rahul as it looks like. So how come he is different from so called other politicians. Would have appreciated your post had you concluded it with some message but you left it hanging. Seems like you were "Kim Kartvya Vimudh" - i.e. what do to do and what not!

    Hope you do give me an opportunity sometime soon in future to praise your posts.

    Regards,
    Prashant

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  48. @ Zobin and Rashmi,

    I have now got the Cambridge University proof that Rahul indeed passed in teh year 1994-1995. Hence i guess the issue can be laid to rest.

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  49. @Str8 Talk

    We take your word for it?
    Was the subject of his MPhil, Development Economics as mentioned in the election affidavit, or something else? If not, isn't that still a lie? If yes, we can put everything to rest.

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  50. The university also says the document that Indian Express quoted is fradulent - Hence the studies is Development studies and not development economics.

    Also one should understand in UK, MPhil certificate donot have what they are awarded MPhil in.

    As for the lie - it is not a lie per say, as his degree is in Development Studies, and he also has done a module as part of his course, a subject on economics and hence i am speculating here: he has mentioned his specilisation.

    I have a MSc in UK and it is in System Level Integration, but i have always used my specilisation and written as MSc in System on chip design - hence dont be skewed in your thinking.

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  51. Its a shame that people like you believe such untruths and start propagating the same. Please take a look at this article to understand what I mean

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  52. Its a shame that people like you believe such untruths and start propagating the same. Please take a look at this article to understand what I mean

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  53. First of all this link: TOI StorySecondly did anyone of you notice the paper Rashmi mentioned as source. It is written as Indian Express. Now Indian Express is a reputed paper and I would usually believe their reports. But if you just click on the link you would see that its not just 'Indian Express' but its 'The New Indian Express' which looks more of a tabloid than a real paper. Thanks for misinforming Rashmi. Atleast could have written your sources as correct.

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  54. @ SR, runconrad, Riyaz

    See my posts, i have been arguing the case that both Rashmi and The New Indian Express was wrong in reporting. I even contacted Rashmi and The New Indian Express, but they did not want to budge. Hence it was I who contacted Cambridge University and also raised the issue with the Congress - which eventually led to the clarificataion from Cambridge and also i have a copy of the letter Cambridge sent to Rahul Gandhi on the clarification.

    I have in the past tried to bring sense to the journalist and the editor of New Indian Express, but they have been rather coy and non apologetic. Today, Rahul Gandhi has initiated a legal proceeding against the university. I have also been told, the same would be carried out against those blogs who have put up fradulent copies of the educational qualification.
    Though The New Indian Express pressed me to send them the document i haev received from Cambridge, i have not bothered to send them due to their callous attitude and also wanted to respect Rahul Gandhi's personal matter. I can rest be assured i tried my best to address the issue on two fronts 1> successfully defend rahul gandhi and 2>debunk the rationale of the article.
    Now i guess it is upto Rashmi and Aditya Sinha from The New Indian Express to deal with teh after affect of this slanderous campaign.

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  55. @Str8 Talk

    There is a difference between what Rahul Gandhi has been awarded from University and what he has mentioned in the elction affidavit. Nobody is talking about defaming an MP, but its the truth and the question on integrity thats the issue here.

    As for others, I think this will suffice-
    "The Congress party has been in power for decades, an order of magnitude longer than any other party. India is in dire straits, never mind the hype to the contrary. The Congress party brought it about. But they were not thrust upon India by divine intervention or providence. The people of India exercising their democratic right repeatedly voted them into power. A certain segment of Indians in their wisdom (or crass stupidity, depending on how you look at it) have determined that anyone, no matter how demented or retarded, as long as they had the last name Gandhi, was divinely ordained to rule India and have exercised their choice in voting for the Congress party. They will most likely do so again, sickening though the thought is."

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  56. @ Zobin

    I would suggest you to read all my comments. I have clearly said the degree is awarded plainly as MPhil. Whether Rahul called his degree Development studies or Development studies & economics - i haev explained the rationale on why people do and have given you my own example. There is an element of flexibility in positioning a study program as part of MPhil and Masters here in UK and based on our specilisation we can use the name of the additional module that one has taken along with his core degree.

    On the issue of dynastic politics, i have a simple take on it, be it BJP or Congress or who ever it is, i dont see a problem in it - reason being it might be easy for them to get a ticket to contest, but they are still deepended on the people to win elections. Hence, it is we who decide whom we want to represent us. Those critics of dynastic politics should understand, if they have a issue then oppose them electorally rather and or educate the people not to vote for lineage or even better contest against them electorally. Without doing any of that, there is no point in whining on the issue of dynastic politics.

    On the issue of congress and BJP - there is very little difference between then on larger national issues, may be they differe in methods of addressing them, but the core fundemental issue is that of constitution - BJP's plank of hindutva is not exactly what hindutva is about, their version is more skewed on religious lines, makes them unacceptable for some one like me, who looks at the constitutional approach.

    On the issue of vote bank politics - i should say sadly every party is involved in it. Why blame political parties for it when we as individuals see caste/creed/religion when it comes to get married. Hence this issue is more fundemental, afterall politicians are a cross section of the society and not someone from heaven or hell.
    When one says under congress the developments have been very slow, i guess this is a fair argument, one i concede, though we need to put things into perspective and make apples for apples comparision. What is more important to understand is in the last 30yrs or so, Manmohan Singh's individual contribution to India is far greater than any other individuals. He opened up the economy and helped strengthed the economy. Vajpayee ji took benefit of it and tested nuclear, which was initially supoosed to be done by PV Narashima Rao, but cud not do it due to international pressure (mainly economy). The contribution of Abdul Kalam should not be forgotten either here. Then it was Manmohan Singh again who clined the civilian nuclear deal. Hence for me, if i compare if i want Manmohan Singh or Advani to be the PM, the answer is simple and clear it has to be Manmohan Singh.

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  57. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  58. sorry the last comment was incomplete (thanks to crappy copy paste and proxified internet connection at college)

    @zobin: even more sickening is that a mass murderer can be voted to power again and again. also you can vote for a 'singh' this itme instead of a 'gandhi'

    @rashmi:
    with the kind of following you have (dont include me) I think it is your responsibility to authenticate the content that you post (not legal responsibility but there is something called moral one). atleast could have written the name of news paper as correct. well its your blog your wish. i can very well see that this blog is more for commercial interest than personal one. hopefully my last visit to your blog (unless ofcourse another post like this make me come back here)

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  59. All said and done ...

    Narendra Modi is 1000 times better than Rahul Gandhi..I know that Rahul will come to power one day and that is because of one single reason that he has a suffix Gandhi attached to his name...Poor fellow he is complete zero on his own..

    If Narendra Modi wants to attack Pakistan, I am completely with him..If Pakistan can do so why should we keep on humminh peace peace and peace..atleast modi speaks his heart out and is not a cheap politician like congress who is creating minority for vote bank politics...

    cry you may but wait for 2014 and modi will come to power with a big bang and you will see the change....

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  60. please do join the army in 2014 when modi attacks pakistan. more lives will be lost in that than what one could possible imagine..and god forbid if nuclear is used....but yeah i know modi has 'bail' like mentality...cant expect him to have patience. and he hardly has any value of life as long as passion of majority voters is ignited...
    (and yeah here i am visiting the blog again...just cant resist the temptation to see funny replies)
    as for rahul gandhi donno what he will be like in 2014 but i can say that currently i will never support him. and this post is about his degree so we can who will be PM when out of this.

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  61. Rashmi,

    I still dont see any apology from you in carrying the article based on your perception on what was right.

    Atleast be courteous in putting a apology on the article like other bloggers.

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  62. To all Raul Vinci/Rahul Gandhi apologists-

    "A certain segment of Indians in their wisdom (or crass stupidity, depending on how you look at it) have determined that anyone, no matter how demented or retarded, as long as they had the last name Gandhi, was divinely ordained to rule India and have exercised their choice in voting for the Congress party. They will most likely do so again, sickening though the thought is."

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  63. i am just wondering why on closer examination of the image shown, the name is RAUL VINCI , not RAHUL GANHDHI, just wondering mate!!!!!!

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  64. Thanks for sharing this great article! That is very interesting Smile I love reading and I am always searching for informative information like this.

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  65. Well ! this man is a PM candidate !!! I would say disqualify his application on grounds of providing wrong information.
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  66. good article. I think even his father wasn't a graduate at Oxford.
    Whether he has completed his degee is neither here nor there. Neither did Einsten or Tagore if you go by folklore.
    But the bigger point is that he has fibbed. Which is not on


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  67. Blogs are so informative where we get lots of information on any topic. Nice job keep it up!!
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