‘Ramjas fracas an attempt to create chaos in Delhi University’

‘Ramjas fracas an attempt to create chaos in Delhi University’

Renuka Dhar Bazaz, Associate Professor in Delhi University, laments the negative and divisive role being played by the Left in university campuses which is creating rift between students and vitiating education environment…


he recent incident at Ramjas College has once again highlighted the negative role played by the Left in university campuses all over the country. Was the violence and the sloganeering seen at the site, a desperate and sinister attempt to replicate last years’s infamous February 9 incident at the Jawaharlal Nehru University Campus? There are several indicators that point towards the collusion of individuals aligned to a specific ideology, having played assigned roles in this plan. The first question to be asked is why the English Department of a College should feel the need to invite speakers known only for their pro-Azadi leanings? What, if one may ask, are the students of English Literature for whom the event was supposedly organized, expected to gain from the ‘revolutionary’ ideas of an Umar Khalid, a Sanjay Kak or a Shehla Rashid? Their only claim to fame being an insidious and fervent campaign for the ‘Azadi’ of Kashmir!

The second question arising from the first one is, what exactly makes these people worthy of being given an opportunity to address the students of Delhi University? Is it their rabble-rousing skills or their ability to brainwash gullible people into accepting their flawed version of a sensitive issue like Kashmir? For all their talk of Bastar and Kerala, anyone with a basic knowledge of the recent histrionics of this duo who insist on clinging to the JNU tag, and Mr. Kak of ‘Jashn-ei-Azadi’ fame, would know that the real purpose of their participation was to hold forth on ‘Azadi’ of Kashmir!

The habit of misleading the public by using the subterfuge of literary events and titles to camouflage their real intent, is not new to this set of people. Remember that the infamous February 9, 2016 fracas at JNU, was also sparked off by the administration’s decision to withdraw permission for a ‘literary event’? That event was cleverly entitled ‘A Country Without A Post-Office’ in obvious reference to Kashmiri poet Agha Shahid Ali’s poem of the same name. So, the modus operandi is the same. Organize an ostensibly literary event at an educational institution, invite the usual suspects and then use that event as a platform to air dubious and inflammatory views!

The next question we need to ask is whether cancelling/withdrawal of invitation warrants a ‘protest march’ by those sharing the ideology of the concerned speaker? Are academic institutions to be held to ransom by protesting crowds liable to incite violence? Surely the possibility that the invited speaker may inspire unrest or put the peaceful atmosphere  of the concerned institution in jeopardy, is reason enough to withdraw the invitation? We have instances of well-known writers like Salman Rushdie and Taslima Nasreen, where such caution has been exercised at literary events much bigger than the one that was to be held at Ramjas College. Invitations were withdrawn but obviously the invitees did not create a ruckus!

The violence that is said to have followed AISA’s protest march outside Ramjas College, was avoidable, had the decorum that is expected of those involved in intellectual pursuits been observed. Why incite passions by shouting slogans and pitting students against each other? If Shehla Rashid was miffed at the invitation being withdrawn, was aggressive protest in the form of her usual ‘Azadi’ slogans seemly behavior on her part? Her repeatedly demanding this ‘Azadi’ that she has surreptitiously imported from the by-lanes of downtown Srinagar , is unhealthy and threatens to infect the bright young minds of our students. The slogans she has taught her gullible followers to chant, are highly provocative and do not bode well for the well-being of any educational institution.

When students are deliberately pitted against each other, provoked via anti-India slogans and shamefully divided on the basis of ideology, violence is bound to follow. What happened at Ramjas was unfortunate and is condemnable, but to twist it to suit a particular agenda, is even worse. Students have been ridiculed and called ‘goons’, endless lies have been generated about the incident by certain sections of the media and there is a blatant attempt to whitewash the dominant role of the Left in this whole brouhaha!

In fact, a certain journalist, who is supposed to have been beaten-up by the police, is a person of dubious credentials. Not only is his sympathy for the ‘Azadi’ cause well-known, he is accused of having posted pictures of injured Syrian children on social media and tried to pass them off as Kashmiri kids to incite passions! Finally, after the resultant public outrage on Twitter he sheepishly took down the fake pictures and apologized. How far can one trust the reportage of such a biased and unprofessional person?

There is a barrage of articles condemning the ABVP and upholding the Left’s ‘right to dissent’. In this virtual melee of pro-left ‘opinions’, isn’t the real problem getting overshadowed? Why were pro-Azadi slogans shouted in the midst of all this, why was a Professor seen to be chanting ‘meethi-meethi Azadi’? Either these people experience a dearth of ‘azadi’ in Delhi University which is hardly possible! Or they’re unwitting pawns in a larger conspiracy that aims to subvert young, pliable minds into a zombie-like worship of a ‘Cause’ that is funded and peddled by our enemies from across the border.

Why else would zealous and devout followers of a faith pose as Atheists and refuse to let go of the JNU tag! It is this tag that lends them the respectability that their destructive agenda lacks, therefore you have ‘scholars’ who refuse to complete their theses even after years of ‘research’. As for the ‘ideology’, it’s a two-way street. The ‘Cause’ gives aggression and finances to a dying and obsolete party which in turn, willingly provides a platform in the national mainstream. These frequent ‘Protests’ and stirring up of controversies is a desperate and concerted attempt by this unholy nexus to infect India with this ‘azadi virus’ from Kashmir to Kerala, Jadavpur, Hyderabad, Delhi and other places. Already, news is coming in, of slogans in favor of Umar Khalid and Afzal Guru having been raised in Pune University. This proves that the agent saboteurs are well-trained and fanned out all over the country!

Therefore, it is imperative that the Ramjas fracas must not be viewed as an incident of ordinary violence, it is a deliberate attempt to create chaos in India’s premier university. It is unfortunate that some of our students get influenced by the glamour of seemingly ‘revolutionary’ ideas that actually promote nothing but anarchy and intolerance. Try debating with a supposedly ‘liberal’ mind and you will see how arrogantly closed their minds are! They refuse to brook any opinion contrary to their own, they snub those who speak against them and are aggressively opposed to the actual freedom of expression when exercised by others! Even their belief in the judiciary is conditional, subject to when and whether it suits them. So what is total faith in the Courts in one instance, becomes ‘judicial killings’ in another instance!

Right now, there is a need to protect our students from political interference and to combat this kind of planned Campus violence. Delhi University has a clean, egalitarian image which must be safeguarded and maintained at all costs.

(Renuka Dhar Bazaz is Associate Professor, Delhi University. The writer’s views are strictly personal)

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