Thousands of people feared trapped by fighting in Afghanistan: UN

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Kabul, Aug 5 | The US is deeply concerned about the safety of civilians in Lashkar Gah, the capital city of Helmand province in southern Afghanistan, fearing tens of thousands were trapped by fighting, the world body’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said.

Conflict in the southern provinces of Helmand and Kandahar displaced civilians to adjacent, calmer areas within the provincial capital cities (Lashkar Gah and Kandahar) and neighbouring districts, Xinhua news agency quoted OCHA as saying on Wednesday.

“There are reports of increased civilian casualties, destruction or damage to civilian houses and to critical infrastructure, including hospitals,” the Office said.

“Hospitals and health workers are becoming overwhelmed by the number of wounded people.”

The UN and its humanitarian partners are assessing needs and responding as access allows.

On Sundaym they reached over 2,000 people with food, water, sanitation and cash assistance in Kandahar.

Since the start of the year, nearly 360,000 people have been forcibly displaced by the ongoing conflict.

About 5 million people have been displaced since 2012.

In the first half of the year, attacks on health facilities deprived 200,000 people in Afghanistan of access to primary care, OCHA said.

The humanitarian office urged parties to the conflict to protect civilians, aid workers and civilian infrastructure, including schools and hospitals, in compliance with international humanitarian law.

It also called on parties to grant aid workers access to assistance without interference, honoring humanitarian principles.

Humanitarians are committed to stay and deliver in Afghanistan and expect to have reached almost half of the nearly 16 million people targeted for assistance, so far in 2021, despite worsening conditions, said OCHA.

The UN seeks urgent funding for Afghanistan’s humanitarian response plan, which requires $1.3 billion, but has received only $485 million, or 38 per cent of the request.

Source: IANS

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Does MBA really help in getting a better job offer ?

Does MBA really help in getting a better job offer ?

Most students pursuing an MBA come with the sole objective of having a decent job offer or a promotion in the existing job soon after completion of the MBA. And most of them take loans to pursue this career dream. According to a recent survey by education portal Campusutra.com  74% MBA 2022-24 aspirants said they would opt for education loans.

There are exceptional cases like those seeking master’s degree or may have a family business to take care of or an entrepreneurial venture in mind. But the exception cases are barely 1%. For the rest 99%, a management degree is a ticket to a dream job through campus placements or leap towards career enhancements. Stakes are high as many of them quit their jobs which essentially means loss of 2 years of income, apprehension and uncertainty of the job market. On top of that, the pressure to pay back the education loans. Hence the returns have to be high. There is more than just the management degree. Colleges need to ensure that they offer quality management education which enables them to be prepared for not just the demands of recruiters and for a decent job but also to sustain and achieve, all along their career path.

  • So, what exactly are the B Schools doing to prepare their students for the job market and make them industry ready ?
  •  Are B schools ready to deliver and prepare the future business leaders to cope up with the disrupted market ?  

These are the two key questions every MBA aspirant needs to ask, check and validate before filling the MBA application forms of management institutes. And worth mentioning that these application forms do not come cheap. An MBA aspirant who may have shortlisted 5 B Schools to apply for, may end up spending Rs 10,000.00 to Rs 15,000.00 just buying MBA / PGDM application forms.

While internship and placements data of some management institutes clearly indicates that recruiters today have specific demands. The skill sets looked for are job centric and industry oriented. MBA schools which have adopted new models of delivery and technology, redesigned their courses, built an effective evaluation process and prepared the students to cope with the dynamic business scenario, have done great with campus placements despite the economic slow down.

However, the skill set being looked for by a consulting company like Deloitte or KPMG may be quite different from FMCG or a manufacturing sector. Institutes need to acknowledge this fact and act accordingly.

  • Management institutes should ensure that students are intellectually engaged, self motivated and adapt to changes fast. In one word ‘VUCA ready’.
  • B Schools should encourage students to participate in national and international competitive events, simulations of business scenarios.
  • Institutes should have the right mix of faculty members with industry exposure and pure academics.

The placement records of 2021 across top management institutes indicated the fact that recruitment is happening, skilled talent is in demand and certain management institutions continued to attract recruiters even in the middle of an ongoing crisis.

It is time, all management institutes rise to the occasion, understand market realities and identify areas of improvement at both ends – students and faculty.

After all, the stakes are high at both ends. B Schools taking corrective measures will stay while those which are lagging will end up shutting down.

Author Name : Nirmalya Pal

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