Why Nothing Will Ever Happen In Bengal

It saddens me to write this—being a proud Bong.

Nothing will ever happen in the state of Bengal.

Nothing, nyet, nada. And it is not because of the “step-motherly” treatment meted out by the central government…..I am not saying that Bengal has always received its share of federal resources but it would be downright wrong to ascribe Bengal’s problems to that alone.

So who are to blame? Our double standards. Our politics. Our ruling party. Our opposition.

I am not going to go after the ruling CPM party or their B-team opposition, the Congress or the hysterical Mamta-led Trinamool. At least not for now. Mainly because I see them as symptoms of the malaise, rather than the cause.

Which brings me to the crux of our problem—-double standards.

And our way of doing politics.

Let me give you an example. I am an alumni of Jadavpur University, one of Bengal’s premier engineering colleges. The students who attend JU Engineering are a selection of the brightest in the state———-and I am not just saying this because I was a part of that student body.

Or maybe I am.

In any case, one would expect these students to be the thought-leaders of tomorrow—–if Bengal is to come out of its morass of strikes, go-slows, union politics and utter laziness passing off as political activism, then it stands to reason that the students of premier universities like JU will have to show the way.

Alas. The student body of JU, as represented by its student union FETSU do not think so. It’s funny really—-their double standards. Controlled by a Naxalite party, the DSF—-they are opposed to the ruling CPM-backed student body SFI. The DSF blames CPM for destroying Bengal—–nothing wrong with that.

But then their political activism recipe is the same as that of the CPM–the same kind of agitationist philosophy that killed Bengal.

Call a strike at the drop of a hat. Even if people want to work/study, prevent them from doing so. If people still want to sneak in to work/study, use physical intimidation. Destroy all opposition, destroy free speech.

The CPM started this. The DSF and by extension the JU student body follow it with gusto. And in the process, the new generation not only pays for the sins of their fathers but are also indoctrinated to pass on the wrongs to their next generation.

When I was a student at JU, I was sickened by our so-called student leaders—-at an age when people should be idealistic and foolish, they were worldy-wise and hypocritical. Most of them did not believe in the causes they themselves espoused.

I know of many of our union dadas who used to rail against multi-national corporations and the imperialist US-Europe combine while at the same time, mugging up word lists for GRE. The few I have kept track of are now either in the socialist republic of California or work for non-profit, worker-owned outfits like Microsoft, IBM and Oracle in India.

Yet these same people would bring the campus to a halt on non-issues, beautify the university by plastering posters all over campus denouncing GATT/ World Bank/IMF, take out processions to show solidarity with the farmers of Guatemala, force people to not attend classes because some students in Mechanical Engineering failed or because the library late fee went up by 3 paise.

That pissed me off the most. The fact that these union dadas could come to our class and ask us (with obvious consequences of refusing) to “support their cause” by boycotting classes and that, no matter what we thought of the issue ourselves, we had to obey. You basically had no choice. I remember the time we came to give a class test and found a huge lock put on the doors of our building by the union dadas———–we all knew what would happen to anyone, student or teacher, who would dare touch that lock. Needless to say, we “spontaneously” supported the strike.

Now let me tell you that I totally enjoyed the class boycotts………they usually meant we either headed for the cricket field in solidarity with the striking workers of a jute mill in Khardah or scooted off to Metro cinema to protest the imperialistic economic policies enshrined in the Dunkel Draft. In retrospect, older and wiser, I realize how much time we wasted doing all this and how we were poorer for all the classes we missed. And surprisingly, there were times when we did want to attend classes……….but the lock on the door and the watchful eyes of the FETSU union people kept us on the cricket field.

For the sake of public disclosure, let me confess that there was one student movement I did support and that was the half day class boycott we did in protest for Sourav Ganguly being dropped from the Indian cricket team in Toronto by Sandip Patil.

Aahh…I have got that off my chest.

The reason I am raking this up is because my alma mater is currently in a crisis. I will spare you the details—-what happened was that on the issue of examination rule changes ( a perennial flashpoint in JU may I add), some of the students got into a physical scuffle with the authorities. The authorities claimed to be manhandled, the students claimed that it was all good-natured pushing and shoving and all that they had done was that they had wrecked a car.

The authorities got angry and expelled/showcaused 5 students among the gang assembled there. All hell broke loose on campus——-the FETSU went to town asking why only 5 were pinpointed when so many more were present. To make the confusion more confounded, it seems that one of the students might not even have been present. But the main thrust of the student union’s argument was that these students had been victimized, they already had jobs and this expulsion would ruin their careers and the punishment far exceeded the magnitude of the offense.

Now look here, student agitators. Firstly, jostling and pushing and wrecking cars is not “acceptable”—maybe it is something which has gone on for so long that we have become inured to it. But it is still quite bad.

The students claimed the teachers (who they were gheraoing) had abused them…….and hence their reaction. Now whatever may have been the provocation, violence is not the solution and if you engage in violence you get punished. No sense in screaming for immunity just because you are a student. And lastly, if you are really a student agitator who thinks that violence is the only way to change oppressive conditions, then take the punishment like a man. Don’t whine. Subhash Bose, a “real’ student politician did not whine when he was expelled from Presidency College for something he did not, in all probability, commit. Because whether he actually did the deed was immaterial, he supported the cause. And that is why he walked. And became a legend.

So if you can’t stand the heat, budding politicians, stay out of the kitchen.

Now continuing our story. Writ petitions were filed in the courts against the showcause, there was general class boycott—-semester examinations took place to empty seats. The FETSU claimed that it was spontaneous——having been a student of that august institution I know what that word means. Not taking the semester exams is a very serious thing——-futures can be adversely affected by a dropped semester……….and the fact that the student unions coerced students into compromising their futures is something that cannot be supported, no matter how worthy the cause.

Then the suspended students and four others undertook a fast unto death. According to the students, the authorities did not compromise even after 2-3 days and one of the students, who was dying after 3 days of fasting, asked to meet the Vice Chancellor as “his dying wish”. The university said that they would talk only after they stopped their fast unto death (a rather reasonable stand).

Then the authorities called in the cops. The cops manhandled the students, not even sparing a girl from a severe beating……and so the detente continues.

But all this I can understand. What I cannot fathom is the reaction by the Jadavpur University Alumni —many of them pillars of society and a large number of them settled in US. They came up with a statement that roundly condemned the JU authorities, asked the students to be re-instated, asked for the resignation of the VC………………and I was totally zapped.

The students I can accept are immature and easily moved. But the people supporting student violence are well-established, responsible professionals. Do they seriously condone students who burn cars and rough up their professors?

Let me ask the alumni members this. If they disagree with their boss in New Jersey on in Bangalore, will they go and gherao him ? If he does not like his evaluation for the year, will he set fire to his boss’s car? If the boss fires him, will he prevent other people from entering the office? Will he go on a hunger strike (with the expectation that the boss will reinstate him)?

No he won’t. Because he knows he can’t. Instead of saying—“yes the university administration is corrupt and full of politics but that does not mean students can indulge in vandalism, violence and coercion without repercussions” the alumni, who should know better, are saying ” yes the university is corrupt and full of politics and the students are fully justified in what they did.”

( In Stonybrook, the administration was way more harsh on students than JU has ever been to theirs. Yet noone ever tried to gherao the president—sure they started stonybrooksucks.com where they bitch about the university nonstop. But no student resorted to vandalism and/or violence. And if they did, they knew what the consequences would be—legal action, expulsion and the sure fact that people would not shed any tears for them once they actually did something illegal.)

And the lesson students carry home? As long as you are in Bengal, gherao/strikes/violence is fine.

Which is why Bengal politics will never change. Which is why people ,who have come to perform the last rites of their fathers, will be left stranded at the airport because there is a general strike. Which is why companies will think thrice before coming to Calcutta. Which is why, despite loving Calcutta so much, so many Bengalis cannot go back to their native city because it has little professional opportunity for the sons of the soil.

I love Jadavpur University. I do not like its politicians—-students and teachers alike. Life is frustrating as a college student in JU, especially when you can see that some of your professors, are incompetent political appointees who do not deserve respect. But violence and disruption is not the solution….. in the professional world you shall also encounter detestable people as colleagues and bosses where you shall have to grin and bear it or face the consequences. Why not get used to it from the student stage itself?

At the very least, students have to understand that you cannot coerce other people into fighting your personal battles. There can be no reason good enough to make people boycott their semester exams and compromise their future.

Just like there can be no good reason (certainly not a hike in prices) for which medical procedures have to be cancelled for patients in hospitals. A son who has lost his father, a man who needs a heart are outside the scope of your political battle—–please keep them out of it.

But we wont. And that is why nothing will ever happen in Bengal.

30 thoughts on “Why Nothing Will Ever Happen In Bengal

  1. Dear GreatBong, do not give up hope. In a nation of tea-drinkers, coffee bars have become the norm. In a city which has been raped pillaged looted and inhabited for at least 1500 years, a brand spanking new Metro is coming up, on time, within budget and without corruption. I used have to bribe a telephone linesman to get my phone working after the monsoon. Nowadays, the linesmen chase after me. Back then, we all thought nothing will ever change. I could actually go on, but you would most likely dismiss my changes as superficial. When change comes, it comes quickly.

  2. Maybe I am not being able to see through the sarcasm here, but dear ttg…..a spanking new Metro does not constitute progress….the bandh called a few days ago and the resultant harship it brought to visitors and Calcuttans alike is ample proof that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

    Calcutta’s infrastructure may get better, but unless this attitude of rationalizing disruptive forms of political protest changes, we will have to remain content staying second best.

  3. I agree with everything you say in your article. In fact for a long time I was contemplating writing a letter to the editor of either the Statesman or Telegraph, saying pretty much the same things as you did.

    And then I read this to find out that Telegraph had already asked people for their opinion. And to my dismay I saw most people were sympathetic to the protestors !

    A large number of Indian students dream of making it to universities in the US. A few lucky ones (like you and I) and actually able to make it – and once we see the student culture here, we realize why this nation is so progressive.

    -Ankur (A Calcuttan, now in Cambridge,MA)

  4. Arnab…you should try to write something like this to the Telegraph or Statesman………

    Though from B’lore, I went to Chennai for my engg. Surprisingly, there are almost NO strikes in engg colleges in TN, Engg. college students unions are in name only, the students slog their butts off…..and i’m not surprised why that region is hogging development in India.

    My friends in Kerala, however, had to undergo exactly what you all do in Bengal. An avg engg. degree in Kerala takes 5.5-6 years (due to time lost out on strikes).

  5. GreatBong,

    I agree students should not become violent while exressing their agitation. Manhandling, abusing to teachers or officials is bad.

    You have given or hinted previous instances, but let us concentrate on the present situation only.

    The concept of one-man committee always wonders me. Singling out 5 students out of say 500 by non-university person is not convincing to me.

    Taking 18 months to finish the enquiry is not also convincing to me. What if some students who graduated in 2004 were guilty?

    And letting our Rapid Action Force police to a group of fasting students is NOT convincing at all.

    If 2000 students do not appear for the semester exams twice in a row, I would like to beleive that there is ‘some’ amount of spontaneity, if not totally unanimous.

    I agree that students have dome some wrong, But what authorities, who are supposed to me mature, did is far more wrong.


  6. Dear Arun,

    The point I am trying to make is no matter how wrong the administration is, there can be no justification for boycotting examinations (semesters exams—which we all know are so crucial for students trying to make academic deadlines for higher studies). If there was even ONE student who wanted to give the examination, (and I can say for certainty there was more than one) then the examinations should take place. Heck even if noone wants to take the examination, it should take place. Because those are the rules.

    Our argument should not be about who is more wrong—the students or the VC. It should be that any form of agitation that inhibits educational activities at the university cannot be accepted.

    A lot of arbitrary, student-unfriendly, illogical, driven-by-vested-interests decisions are made by academic administrations in US too———nobody here goes to this extent. They make fun of the president in the campus newspaper, put some uncomplimentary remarks on bulletin boards…….and thats IT.

    And this is what it should be.

    By supporting the hoodlums at FETSU, we as mature (now I find it funny to consider myself mature) alumni are doing these students and Bengal a disservice—-we are supporting a course of action that happens nowhere else in the civilized world.

    The ramifications of his course of action then spill out onto the streets and permeate our polity.

    As to putting the RAF on students…what else could the authorities do? I dont buy into “these are students”…students should be treated no differently than mill workers. And these students had already destroyed a car and manhandled some professors—-so they were by no definition angels.

    Now did the RAF use excessive force? From the pictures I saw…it seemed so. But then again, that does not mean that the VC should resign.

    In conclusion, it is not that I support the administration but I surely am not with FETSU. And though I can understand FETSU’s actions, I find JUGAA’s statements to be apalling, quite unjustified and extremely immature.

  7. Dear Great(!)bong:

    Kindly note that there are two ways of redressal of grievance. The first one is exit and the second one is voice. Although there is no reason to suppose one is better than the other, the second one often signifies a balance of power between the parties involved.

    The exit idea is that if you don’t like it, either take it lying down, or leave. So, if you disagree with your boss, just shut up for dear life if you cannot find another job. Or, if your boss cannot afford to lose you, he better take your nonsense. Thats classic capitalism. You have mentioned that all that disgruntled students can do in SUNY is start some website! Is that very desirable? In many univs, grad students have to grade for the minimum wage – they can’t do much about that. But did you know that in UCLA – the student’s union moved and raised the floor wage for students? Thats because there *was* a student’s union. So, the voice alternative – the aggrieved party collectively taking their grievance to the responsible party can help, even in an educational institution.

    The exit alternative works only when it can successfully alienate one victim from another. The voice alternative has to therefore draw its strength from numbers. It is precisely for this reason that students who, individually, have very little power to alter things -need to use the voice alternative in the form of the union.

    Now, either party can be responsible, and often both are, in any continuing melee. I agree that the debate should not be about who shares a larger chunk of the blame. The right question is how to design the right grievance redressal system so as to ensure smooth functioning of the university. While designing such systems, we should also keep in mind that each party will play its own selfish, irresponsible games. The CPM will put duds in top univ posts, and students will heckle them and cut classes. But, you seem to suggest that EXIT is the only allowable option – if you dont like JU, leave. Your idea of the role of student’s union appears to be minimal, if any at all. But please realise that the main role of the union is as a threat to extreme powermongering of the authority.

    I will give you an example. I joined JU in 1993, and then classes were held up for more than a month because a professor had made sexual advances on a student. I do not buy the idea that other professors are a check on this kind of happening – it seems that a very large section of the professors at JU had stood by the offender, calling it a minor offense. It was only after a month’s standstill that propoer action was taken against the culprit. Yes, the regular functioning was interrupted for a month – some students completely unrelated to the incidents were adversely affected, but this incident surely works as an active deterrent to such happenings till date. I for one would be okay with giving up classes for a month if I know that this is a worthy price for something that benefits the community at large. Would you?

    Realise one thing. You are making the same mistake as many Americans do when they think that history started on 11th Sep 2001. The students at JU are quite angry with the authority for various other reasons: The general apathy towards teaching, the continuous drop in quality of incoming professors, the corruption among the authority and so on…These events often happen when the boiling point is exceeded. I am not one to condone the act of heckling other people, but I would be the last person to use that as an argument for abolishing or restricting the student’s union.

  8. Dear Gati (??)

    Maybe the fault is mine—I did not get my point clearly across. My main point was no matter how justified your agitation, you have no right to coerce other people to sacrifice anything for *your* cause. To take a concrete example, if you thought that the sexual harassment incident was something worth wasting 1 month for (I am not implying it was not) and Mr X does not, you have no right to waste a minute of Mr X’s time.

    Is that simple enough? That’s all I wanted to say—because the FETSU goons use muscle, social boycott and different ways of coercion in order to make us a part of their movement. I detest that.

    A word about Stonybrook—-we have one of the strongest student unions—they also negotiated better benefits for graduate students. (not just UCB sir)….however if I wanted to stay out of their agitation I was free to do so. They never came to my lab and said ” Accha aajke toder lab korte hobe na”.

    There were many things I did not mention in my blog. And that is my knowledge of the people inside DSF and SFI—-their real motivations, their underhanded dealings and how they make students a pawn in their game. I know that’s how politicians are….but we dont shed tears for polticians either.

    A point Gati. When you try to take a point contrary to someone else’s, it’s not quite cricket saying the other person is “mistaken”—–as you well know or should the concept of “mistake” is subjective. So while I may have an opposing point of view (and you
    have to accept that I was not saying something outrageous), you should be generous enough to accept it for what it is—a viewpoint. Nothing wrong or right —just different. Else we get into “you are either with us or against us” kind of generalizations.

    I detected a kind of justification for 9/11 in your comment—-I wont even dignify that with a retort.

    I am not one to condone the act of heckling other people

    Your entire comment is one gigantic condoning of the hoodlums who pass off as students in JU.

    And one more thing, I never opposed student unions. What I do oppose is that whenever the heat gets turned up on them, they come crying with their tails between their legs….”mamma mamma we got kicked out”….sure that is part and parcel of the struggle.

    In any case thanks for visiting my blog and commenting.

  9. Dear Arnab – lets get one minor issue out of the way : when two parties debate or oppose each other, indeed they claim that the other side is mistaken. It is wrong only when one says that the other side should be punished/attacked/denounced… for holding the mistaken view. We do it always. You have committed it, with much greater force than me, right after you said that we can agree to disagree: *I detected a kind of justification for 9/11 in your comment—-I wont even dignify that with a retort.* You see! Every act is justified, at least for the doer, and all you have to do is to see the world from his viewpoint: you will see the justification.

    Next, about whether it is okay by any yardstick to force the unwilling student to boycott. This depends on whether you consider students a “body” with some common interests or just a collection of individuals with sufficiently varied interests. If your view is the latter, then exit is the only option of redressal of grievance: take it or leave it. I dont have much to say, except that this means that there will effectively be no check on the authority’s power. Imagine a situation where quite a few students do not care enough about another one getting molested or prevention of such incidents in future (I am graduating anyway…or I am a guy…so I am never in danger…) to boycott classes. Note that there will be many, in this case. Classes will be half full, and things will go on just like before. The girl in question may have to take the exit route though.

    The power of the students lie in their being a body with common interests. They democratically elect a set of representatives that will represent such interests, just like we do in the larger political system. Note that even in such an election, the candidate selection is not unanimous. If a collection had to always wait for a unanimity to express its voice, then it is dommed to be dumb forever. As the union is selected, all students are under an obligation to abide by the union decision which is deemed to be the voice of the majority of the students. That is exactly how the system of voice works, and that is exactly how student interests are protected.
    The stand that the political decisions taken by the union are often not in the interests of students is plainly wrong, because the students vote for them, and they do so, knowing jolly well what the party is going to do in such-and-such situations. Essentially, students *want* such boycotts or at least dont care. If not, they could vote for someone else – in the extreme case, they could throw up a third force other than SFI and DSF if they hate both. Such things do indeed happen, Presidency College is an example.

    That said, no system is prefect. But I would any day recommend an imprefect voice route than an imprefect exit route when I am talking about a university. Yes, professors may be heckled (I am not condoning the act, but I am speaking for the system claiming it as the lesser evil compared to the opposite extreme) but girls will not be molested routinely.

  10. Dear Gati,

    There are certain points of view I do not wish to be drawn into opposing…(I still don’t say they are mistaken…just different) because they are so widely divergent from my view that arguing about them is counterproductive.

    Taking your argument about unions and accepting it as correct, one could say that whatever Hitler did was justified. A majority of Germans supported him (he was democratically elected), the few germans who did not could have just come up with a contender—that they did not do so showed that they did not care enough. Since Hitler represented the “body of Germans” and Jews were in a minority and a major portion of Germans did feel a pathologic hatred for Jews, Hitler was merely doing his constitutional duty by implementing the Final Solution.

    Narendra Modi is democratically elected by a body of Gujratis. His actions therefore represent the voice of Gujrat. If Muslims really cared about getting killed and raped they would have set up their own Modi-opponent. That they don’t shows they don’t mind getting killed.

    This is what you said:

    “As the union is selected, all students are under an obligation to abide by the union decision which is deemed to be the voice of the majority of the students. That is exactly how the system of voice works, and that is exactly how student interests are protected.”

    Replace students with Gujratis and union with Modi. The union decision is “all Muslims are to blame for Godhra”. Now try making sense of what you said.

    Now this is what it becomes:

    As Modi is selected, all Gujratis (Hindus and Muslims) are under an obligation to abide by the Modi’s decision that “all Muslims are to blame for Godhra” which is deemed to be the voice of the majority of Gujratis. That is exactly how the system of voice works, and that is exactly how Gujrati’s( which includes Muslim Gujratis) interests are protected.”

    Now this is what I say: I am part of the whole “body of students”. However I am a person and the support I provide to this body is on a case-to-case basis. If the body does something I do not agree with, I have the right to stand away (like many Hindus who protected Muslims in Gujrat did…by your logic since they democratically elected Modi they should also be hacking Muslims to death since the “majority” wants it).

    And if you do not give me the right to stand away and instead try to use intimidation to force me to go with the flow….then that to me is not democracy…it is mob justice.

    And no Gati professors may not be heckled or manhandled…..mainly because contrary to your dramatic conclusion…ladies are not molested routinely by “professors”.

  11. Arnab, I enjoy this sort of debate, except when the opposing party paints an extreme, pathological picture of my viewpoint and dishes it out as the only possibility. Taking what you say to its logical extreme, one can easily make a case in favour of *any* act (of commission or omission) that is deemed unlawful by the state, just because one’s inidividual opinion supports it. This, note, is not to say that anything unlawful is wrong by some absolute standard, but allowing everyone a complete freedom to act according to their own volition is striking at the root of the very social fabric that we have built over centuries.

    Lastly, although this is a counterfactual, one can probably ascribe the fact that *ladies are not molested routinely by “professors”* (as you have so proudly quoted) to the union’s strong stand 10 years back, to a large extent.

  12. Gati, I also do enjoy such debates except when the opposing party expresses himself/herself in such a way that I cannot understand what they said.

    “one can easily make a case in favour of *any* act (of commission or omission) that is deemed unlawful by the state, just because one’s inidividual opinion supports it. This, note, is not to say that anything unlawful is wrong by some absolute standard, but allowing everyone a complete freedom to act according to their own volition is striking at the root of the very social fabric that we have built over centuries.”

    Forgive me if its Friday senility but I just did not understand how this above fits in as a retort to the Modi example.

    Actually I didnt understand the sentence(s).

    Now this part below I understood.

    Did you actually say that professors (pre 1993) used to molest students regularly before the union protested? And that the student’s concerted efforts put some sense into the naughty/nutty professors’ heads so much so that that they are no longer as regular as they used to be?

    By this logic, other institutions where no strikes have taken place would still have molesting professors..right? Or is it just JU where the lechs of the world unite?

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  14. Isn’t the Narendra Modi example our very own homegrown Hitler equivalent? Think about why the Godwin’s Law exists, and you will realise why Narendra Modi falls exactly in the same category.

  15. Mmm am I obligated to accept this “law” ? Honest to God, I was not part of any “body” that elected him.

    No matter what law you invoke dear friend, your logic has been kinda exposed by my “substitutions” (imho). I do accept I was carrying your line of reasoning to an extreme but unfortunately, the “rule of the majority” argument you put forward is exactly the one Modi espouses

    Majority are Hindus, Hindus want “Ramrajya” (whatever that means)….all the rest of you have to accept it.

    Your logic mirrors this line of reasoning…that is why I had to do the substitution.

    In any case, thanks for giving me the funda of the day about the law thing—much appreciated.


    Hope you browsed through other sections of my blog.

  16. I did indeed browse other sections, and found them quite nice, and often very funny. I went into splits of laughter at the Sharukh Logic post.

    But there is also quite a bit of juicy masala for me to counterargue, since our world views are so divergent and often diametrically opposed….so I see some more such energy-sapping fights coming up.

    But thats for another day.

  17. Looking fwd to it


  18. hey greatbong,

    Couldn’t agree more with you. Moi too also feel sad when I look at bengal and especially calcutta. That city has lost its charm completely.
    And now, you have educated youth trying to undo what their socialist fathers and uncles did by doing blue-collared jobs in call centres, symbloic of American imperialism.

  19. Gati is right.Anyways, the pride of having made it to the MA is pretty nauseating.

  20. @Apoplexy, what is MA ?

  21. Could’nt agree with Greatbong more. As a student of JU, lemme tell you: it really sucks when hopeless idiots storm into your classroom, campaigning for their parties for FETSU posts in miserable English.

    But there is a very simple solution to this issue. A very simple one.

    Just reduce the percentage of Bengali students in JU. Take students through all India tests and that solves it completely. Sure you need to increasse size of hostels, but that is’nt too difficult, is it??

    A large number of students of JU entering politics can hardly express themselves in English. Now, with non Bengalis in a majority, how will you address them? In Hebrew? How do you intend to translate “Cholche Na Cholbe Na” in English?

    The false sense of security that such fools have would be shattered, consequently, they would first think about their English speaking skills before thinking of DSF/SFI?

    This model has worked in NIT Durgapur? Why not JU?

  22. Arnab,
    May be a ittle too late to comment on this post but, I am a JU Alum of 2005 Batch and so i was a live witness to all that had happened. I Couldn’t agree more with you on this point. Let me also tell you this, I was a mechanical engineering student and was the only one who said on the face of those politcal goons of JU that “screw semester boycott” I am giving mine. There was a small gherao from the “friends” of mine from FETSU to “convince” me. There were a lot flying statements from some of my “friends” as to what cud be the consequence if i continue with my words. Their problem was I had a grp of guys my real frnds from JU who were apolitical to say the least and if we went against the Fetsu Dadas more such grps will spring. Anyways the moral of the story was not as herioc as i am trying to portray. “I stood against the goons” kindof filmy story actually didnt take off. I dont knw why i got convinced by them (may be coz the faces were of my classmates who i cud hardly hate). To tell you the truth I was not intimidated into subjugation as many might think reading the post. But rather i deviated from my beliefs then. Today when i read your post and manytimes when i think about it i feel that day i shudn’t have seen the faces of my frnds in them but rather shud have stood for what i felt abt them…Which BTW is exactly the feelings you put to paper. I agree “OUR JU is in BAD Shape” and since the day you wrote this post i can assure you its has gone worse….

  23. Bhaskar,

    Just reduce the percentage of Bengali students in JU. Take students through all India tests and that solves it completely.

    That’s a great idea! Diversity always sets in self-correcting cycles. Different people come in with different ideas, and people start learning each other’s positive points. After class XII, it makes a lot of sense to let the students interact with people from all over the country.

    Man, do I hate these political party chamchas!! They have absolutely no credibility, no knowledge, no passion, no reason, no nothing! Probably, a less than average mediocre student. Probably, never exercises — it is all in the fertile mind. Probably, they have amasha (dysentry). Probably, very indisciplined. Probably, when caught pissing against a wall, and spreading the smell of ammonia, they will retort – amra gorib, or some such moronic blabber. I have seen these people very closely.

    With all the naiveté of the undergraduates in the US, there’s much to learn from them. I am amazed by their foolish optimism. They mean what they say.

    Forget all this highfalutin philosophy (they just know enough to be dangerous), first start with keeping the campus clean and green. Then do some social work. You do not need any political inclination to do these things. You do not need to rake up a romantic (and imaginary) right-left debate (Comrade A. Sen likes tokko, while pigs loiter in state hospitals) over a cup of coffee in the coffee-house (while reading rokto-gorom-kora Marxist poetry). Disgusting! and deceiving, too.

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  25. The Bengalees as a race is doomed for extinction!!! Inflated egos within the community members have dishevel-led the entire people. Surprisingly, all are contended with this plethora of horrid experiences since 1947, with the so called “communists” narrating the incidents in their theatrical monologues. Now debunking one’s own language and adopting the “North Indian” culture have become a way of life for the average Bengalees. A refugee will always be a refugee syndrome is staring at our face with WB and Tripura bereft of Bengali population.

  26. Stumbled upon this 17 years later, and sadly the exam-boycott initiative of the FETSU leaders have continued. They gave a deputation to the authorities to boycott even semester exams because of online-offline transition and “heat-waves” in a “rainy day”, and called for a boycott when the authorities didn’t agree. Two days later,hours before the next scheduled exam date, people came to know that the union won’t give an official boycott call. For many of the students who did want to give the exam amidst all the miscommunication, professors didn’t agree to open the seal of the question set as the number of students willing to take the test was not sufficient.
    I’m just happy that many of the departments decided collectively that they will not join FETSU in this movement. People aren’t so easily coerced now.
    (Even semester exam, ’22)

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