Shaurya Thapa


Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad(ABVP) and Students Federation of India(SFI) had a violent conflict due to the screening of the documentary Ram Ke Naam in the Kashmere Gate campus of Ambedkar University Delhi(AUD). 


On the 30th August, Ambedkar University Delhi(AUD) branch of the Students Federation of India(SFI) organised the screening of the documentary Ram Ke Naam by Anant Patwardhan in their Kashmere gate campus when they were disrupted by members of the Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad(ABVP) and were asked to stop the screening. The screening was organized in solidarity with the students of the University of Hyderabad who were recently detained by the police for organizing a screening of the same.


The documentary explores the campaign waged by the Hindu-nationalist Vishva Hindu Parishad to build a Ram temple at the site of Babri Masjid in Ayodhya, as well as the communal violence that it triggered.


The representatives of the ABVP claimed that the SFI did not have proper permission and they should’ve sought permission beforehand. They said that the SFI intimidated the administration and gathered last-minute permission.


However, SFI denied all these claims stating they took all measures beforehand.


According to the SFI, The screening started at 2:45 and a few minutes into it, a few men barged into the room and turned on the lights. They began speaking about how their caste sentiments were being hurt by the screening of the movie. “Main brahman hoon and meri sentiments ko hurt karti hai yeh,” said one of the men present.


Mr. Siddharth Yadav, State Secretary for the ABVP Delhi, told DU Beat ” the ideological issue that they (SFI) were polluting the mind and not giving enough free space for students to judge for themselves whatever they were trying to show is not correct. They can have their version of whatever idea they were trying to represent, but space must be left for the students to judge for themselves. So it was a very biased and propaganda-based presentation that they were trying to make.”


Eventually, Dean of Student Services and the Pro Vice-Chancellor had to get involved. A representative of the students’ union asked the officials to ensure that these people leave and the screening continues. When they weren’t able to do so, so the guards had to drag them out.


When diplomacy did not work, the goons resorted to violence and tried breaking the projector. They went outside and tried manhandling the guards and throwing tables. Within a few minutes, the power supply was cut off for the entire campus.


In conversation with DU Beat, Ms. Shruti M D, Secretary of the Kashmere gate unit of SFI-AUD, said, “There were eight disruptions. The movie is one hour fifteen minutes long but the screening took two and a half hours two complete. We took a laptop and Bluetooth speakers and continued the screening of the movie inside while these people continued their ruckus outside… There were only 50 people in the beginning, but the screening finished with about 200 people who had come. The ABVP guys were less than 10 people.”


Utkarsh, another member of the SFI elaborated saying, “about 200-300 AUD students came to resist the 10 goons from ABVP, most of which were not students of AUD. common Ambedkar students spontaneously mobilized. It was a historic moment for AUD”


Later during the day, videos of goons vandalizing the campus and protesting the screening spread around Facebook. In one video, a man, who the SFI identified as Rahul Tiwari from ABVP, could be seen throwing a table. In another, members of both parties along with the other students of AUD could be seen in conflict.


When asked about the vandalism and destruction of property, Mr. Yadav said, “If there is a video of ABVP throwing tables, it will be headline news. Generally, ABVP is shown as vandalizing but if you investigate more into it, the administration would tell you how intimidating these SFI members were there to attain permissions for the screening…  The person in the video is not an ABVP member but a student activist. Turns out that normal students had also protested independently.”


The protest gathered attention and both the faculty and the students of AUD were present trying to make sense of the situation. “I was in my music society meeting when the power broke out. We thought it would be a normal power cut but someone came in and said that the SFI and ABVP were fighting so we tried to rush out of the college. There was a huge crowd and the police were there. I got out of there since I didn’t want to be involved but it was pretty violent.” said a student present.


Amidst political differences, accusations of vandalism and destruction of property emerge in a crucial time for ABVP with the DUSU elections just around the corner. This year, other student parties have also raised voice against the gundagardi in the North Campus.


SFI in their official statement wrote that they will continue waging a fight in defense of the secular and pluralistic ethos of our nation.


Featured Image Credits- AUD


Satviki Sanjay

[email protected]

The convention hall of the Delhi University (DU) saw students from all across the university attending the live screening of the launch of The Fit India Campaign by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi on the occasion of National Sports day.


“I want to see you fit and make you fitness-conscious”, said PM Narendra Modi in his last

Mann Ki Baat session. This planted the seeds for the Fit India campaign, a nationwide movement which aims to encourage people to inculcate physical activity and sports in their everyday lives. The campaign is launched on National Sports Day which is celebrated on 29 August every year to commemorate the birth anniversary of the hockey legend, Major Dhyan Chand.


A live screening of the launch event of the Fit India Campaign was organized by the Sports Council of the University of Delhi at the Convention Hall, Viceregal Lodge on 29 August 2019. The event which began at 9:30 am saw Dr. Benu Gupta, associate professor, Kirori Mal College deliver the welcoming address to the students.


It was followed by the lighting of the lamp ceremony by the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Yogesh K Tyagi. To amplify the event, the students of the Shaheed Sukhdev College of Business Studies performed the Sarasvati Vandana.


A fitness video was then played which talked about Yoga Day, mental illnesses and the importance of sports in our lives. It delivered the message that the Fit India Campaign is meant to inspire the nation to become more active and take care of themselves. Vinita, a student of Kirori Mal college affirmed saying, “This movement is a very nice initiative, especially for the students, as we feel like our life is just going to college and coming back and sleeping and eating. Through this movement, we can all pledge to be more active.”


The live session of the launch of the campaign by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium in Delhi was then screened at the hall. The program saw a cultural display by the students showcasing different sports followed by an address delivered by the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister, in his speech, addressed everyone as students since everyone had been a student at some point in their lives and urged everyone to walk 10,000 steps each day to remain fit. Aditya Malik, a student from Ramjas, commented on the movement and said,” It is a new start of our prime minister so it could lead India to a new stage where we can perform well. In my village, we are not aware of yoga due to illiteracy but efforts by all of us will lead India to a new level.”


“I feel that we all should have a routine which keeps us fit. I plan to follow PM Modi’s words and walk 10,000 steps daily.”, said Simran Arora, another student from Kirori Mal College.


This event saw students taking a pledge to strive to be more active and making India more fit, a step a day.


Featured Image Credits- Rishabh Chauhan for DU Beat


Satviki sanjay 

[email protected]


Priya Chauhan

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‘You go on talking about making a Ram Mandir in Ayodhya for years. But then, if we Dalits cherish a mandir, you go on hurting our feelings.’ says Munni Lal Gautam at Tughlaqabad.

A Dalit from Delhi, he along with several Dalits are fuming with anger at the Prime Minister and central government. Many of them have been protesting here since a day, and some 90 of them have even been arrested.

Now, India is a country of politics, temples, and politics around temples. The recent Dalit protests bear testimony to this.

Yesterday, many students from the University of Delhi (DU) found forwarded Whatsapp messages and images showing the recent protests in the Tughlaqabad region of Delhi by the Dalit Community from Delhi and Punjab. In typical Indian protest fashion, DTC buses were being damaged and tyres were set ablaze as slogans were chanted, the night before.

Even if Dalit protesters at the area claimed that these vandals were just outsiders aiming to tarnish their cause, one can’t deny that these Dalits are furious. They’re furious at the police charging at them with lathis and gas; they’re furious at the state and central governments.

But why are they furious?

We’ll have to turn back to August 10, to get a clearer picture. The Supreme Court had ordered the Delhi Development Authority (which falls under the centre) to demolish the Sant Ravidas temple, a shrine highly respected among the Dalit community.

Before, we get down to the aftermath of this demolition, let’s take another trip back time to understand the importance of Sant Ravidas.

For those unacquainted with the Dalit icon, Ravidas (or Raidas as some account refer to him) was a mystic poet from the 15th century. A proponent of the bhakti movement in India’s spiritual history, Ravidas became a celebrated figure amongst castes in Punjab, UP, and Rajasthan. His verses on universal love are held in such esteem that some of them are even featured in the Sikh scripture Guru Granth Sahib. This further goes on to show his importance in Punjab.

Legend also has it that Ravidas came from a family of ‘untouchable’ leather workers. Rising above caste differences to be a guru of such stature is a remarkable case of lower castes standing up for their own rights. Ravidas is no less of a god especially for the Jatav and Chamar communities.

Now, if we come back to the Delhi temple dedicated to him, its legal battles with DDA aren’t new. Way back in 1992 too, the DDA had attempted to demolish the shrine as it lay in a protected forest region of Tughlaqabad.

Finally, this year, when DDA actually engaged in removing Ravidas’s mark from these forests, the Dalits naturally got enraged. Various Dalit bodies met for a peaceful protest at a classic Delhi venue, the Ramlila Maidan.

But here, many protesters joined with spiritual and political leaders, decided to march to the site of the temple, to make their voice heard. This is when the violence started to erupt.

Hira Lal, a Dalit activist, says that it was the policemen who were the first to attack the protesters on the night of 21st August. He does agree that some vehicles were being damaged. But as mentioned before, he too strongly feels that these perpetrators were not a part of the juloos from Ramlila Maidan.

As of now, the Dalits are still held in custody. But 22nd August saw a lot of traffic jams in the city. ‘These protests happened near the Govindpuri area and three DU colleges lie here: Ramanujam, Deshbandhu, and Acharya Narendra Dev. So naturally, there’s fear and confusion among the students. It seems that some classes also might have been cancelled.’ says Vaibhav Tekchandani, a student of Ramanujam College.

But sadly, for the privileged in their privileged bubble, this issue might not matter that much. Some students were bothered more about getting stuck in traffic and metro queues rather than the tumultuous happenings of the city.

As a source from Lady Shri Ram College tells, one of her professors scolded students for not showing up for the 8:45 class in the morning!

‘Protest hote hue bhi mai toh aagayi.’ (I came despite these protests), the professor said apparently…


Shaurya Singh Thapa

[email protected]



When a bad relationship breaks down, you never get closure with that person. Similarly, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood could never give me the closure that I needed. Here’s a fan’s reaction on witnessing Quentin Tarantino’s ‘love letter to LA’.


Quentin Tarantino is a name that echoes in the mind of every film enthusiast, whether it be the aspiring screenwriter/director studying the greats, the pretentious cinephile whose movie tastes are based on artsy Instagram posts, or even the people who haven’t watched a single movie by him!

With just 9 films, the director has garnered a cult following for himself, with fans expecting a unique blend of comedy, pop culture, and hyper-violence. His films aren’t supposed to evoke some deep emotion in you and they might even lack meaning (no matter what critics or film theorists interpret) but surely his dialogues and scenes leave a lasting impact on the viewer.

When I was in a ‘PG-13 film-watching age’, I got my first hit off this Tarantino drug. My father had just watched a bloody Western comedy-drama called Django Unchained. Now with the blood, slurs, racism (the movie is set in the times of American plantation slavery), my old man didn’t want me to enjoy this R-rated extravaganza but maybe somewhere, he did want me to get a taste of it.

In a parent-friendly manner, he told me to watch Django whenever it could air on TV. I did watch a censored version on Pix and boy, I was enthralled. From the smart satire to the aesthetics to the randomness (hip-hop songs playing in a film set in the 1800s, Ku Klux Klan members complaining about the fact that they can’t see through the holes in their masks), this was something I had never experienced before.

Apologies to my caring father, but I couldn’t resist, and I went online to watch an uncensored version and appreciated it even more. Dialogue from that film suits my newfound love for Tarantino, ‘You had my curiosity, now you have my attention’.

Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown, Kill Bill Vol. 1, Kill Bill Vol. 2, even Kill Bill: The Whole Bloody Affair, I devoured everything associated with this ‘filmmaking god’. And maybe that god status that people like me gave him, is the reason why his latest release failed to leave a mark on me.

You see when you make an artist a god, it’s natural for you to think that everything he touches will be gold. Even if Tarantino never said Aham Brahmasmi, film geeks have already made him a cinematic bhagwaan of sorts, along with others like Christopher Nolan and Anurag Kashyap.

Once Upon A Time In Hollywood was marketed with enough buzz and hype to match a Disney remake or a Marvel superhero flick. Tarantino teased a fun bromance between Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio, an intriguing ‘Uma Thurman from Pulp Fiction’-like act by Margot Robbie, famous serial killer (more like serial killer instructor) Charles Manson is a plot point, and endless references to 60s Hollywood, the world in which it is set in.

Dropping on 15th August, I felt it’s my patriotic duty to watch some sacred swadesi stuff rather than Tarantino. Finally, I picked a mangalwaar (Tuesday) to pass near the screen showing Mission Mangal and watch Hollywood.

Now, I’m 20. This was the first time I could watch an Adult rated Tarantino movie on the big screen, in all its glory. What did I get?

I got some classic CBFC interferences like beer cans being censored and words like ‘bastard’ being muted while f-words are heard clearly! But other than that, it’s maybe Tarantino’s ambitions that were the biggest interference for me.

I won’t delve much into spoilers as you can find them anywhere on the internet. So, I’ll Now I enjoyed the film but maybe I expected more. The technical aspects like cinematography and production design were spot-on while the direction was also not bad (to say the least). But then the script was all over the place. And a Tarantino film with a weak script, I never thought something like that would exist.

Whatever was increasingly hyped managed to be downplayed in the movie, at least for me. And right towards the ending of the second half when the hype started taking over me, when my adrenaline started rising, the words ‘Written and Directed by Quentin Tarantino’ appeared and I realised this is the end.

Once Upon A Time In Hollywood is like that dish which will satisfy (not fully satisfy) your taste buds but the aftertaste won’t be something worth remembering. Unlike his previous films, there’s also a dearth of quotable lines. It’s sad that the one chuckle-worthy line ‘We love Pussy’ seems like it’s straight out of a Seth Rogen comedy (Seth Rogen is a funny dude but he’s no god like QT).

I get it there are a lot of good cinematic references (if we exclude a problematic Bruce Lee impersonation) and an ending which will make sense to those who have read up on the Charles Manson murders (look it up online if you want nightmares), but still I wasn’t prepared for Tarantino to make a film that would be this ‘niche’.

The man behind Django used to entertain me as well as my parents in equal amounts. There was nothing polarising about his filmography.

In fact, there’s nothing polarising about this film too as many do feel it’s flawed but still feel it’s thoroughly entertaining. But I’m pretty sure there might be some viewers like me who fell for the hype and had Tarantino defy their expectations (in the negative sense). I found Brad and Leo hilarious but wished their bromance to have developed further. I found the production design to be aesthetic but again wished the movie got into “substance over style” mode sooner. In the end, I’m accepting that it’s a good film but I again wish this entry in the Tarantino Universe to be a better film.

So, this raises certain questions. In this age of Insta and YouTube, should we even watch trailers and get extremely hyped about any film? Is Tarantino, the director whose styles are bold and experimentative, experimenting further? Would people have loved Once Upon A Time In Hollywood if it wasn’t ‘Written and Directed by Quentin Tarantino’?

This article just like Tarantino’s endings are open to interpretation…


Featured Image Credits: Vox

Written and Directed by

Shaurya Singh Thapa

[email protected]

What makes India India, is its composite nature, its many cultures and languages which is why imposing one single language on all the people is problematic, at the same time the alternative is continuing with a language that was once imposed on us (quite ironically, the language used in this article as well).




In the current political context, this is a word we don’t feel shy throwing around. We may add a suffix such as ‘hyper’ or ‘anti’ at times but the root word remains. But what really does the word indicate?


Unlike what many believe, nationalism is not simply the love for one’s country, it is the contempt for all others, it is the belief that one’s nation is superior to all other nations. Nationalism also appeals to the identity of the person, a sense of belonging or one force that binds everyone together to the nation.


When Indian nationalism developed during the freedom struggle, it was based on the territory of India that constituted the entire population despite their diverse backgrounds. It was anti-colonial nationalism aimed to create a sense of patriotism with the purpose of attaining self-governance.


After attaining Independence, it was the need to rid ourselves of colonial elements that Hindi was proposed to be the language of administration and governance. Due to protests in the southern states, a compromise was made that there will be a fifteen-year period to transition from English to Hindi but as temporary provisions go in India, this transition was never made.


After seventy-three years, the language debate still continues. This year, for instance, the National Education Policy draft recommended mandatory Hindi classes in all schools, even in non-Hindi speaking areas. This clause was met by protests in the south and was thus removed but it nonetheless proves that ‘nationalists’ of this country have not given up on the hope of having one language that would unify all the people of the nation.


While this idea seems promising and also gives us a sense of letting go of our colonised past, the need to implement Hindi as the common language of the country is not driven by anti-colonial nationalism as much as it is by cultural nationalism. Cultural nationalism is a form of nationalism in which the nation is defined by a shared culture, it focuses on the identity of a nation and its people shared by common language and traditions.


Those rooting for the imposition of Hindi are not rooting against English or the west, in fact, a lot of them can be seen celebrating Donald Trump’s birthday in Delhi, but it is their need to create a homogenous cultural identity that makes them make such demands. This imposition is especially felt by those from South and North East India, students coming from these states to Delhi for higher education are faced by casual comments like ‘this is why they need to teach Hindi everywhere’ when they can not comprehend the language.


At the same time, what is the alternative?


English was also an imposed language, Lord Macaulay in 1835 decided for us that English should be the language of education, instead of other ‘Oriental’ languages. It is the language of the colonisers and even when English is said to have been appropriated by Indians as is evident in postcolonial literature, the truth still stands that as long as we continue to give English the importance that we do, we diminish the importance of our own culture and languages.


Then, of course, there is the three-language formula, one that says that each state should teach English, Hindi and any other non-Hindi language. The issue with this is that while almost all students receiving formal education in India learn Hindi up to a certain grade, those living in the Hindi belt do not reciprocate the same respect to other regional languages. You will not find many students in Delhi learning Tamil or Manipuri in their schools, instead, their school would offer German or French (thus furthering the ‘west is best’ idea).


Both Hindi and English are languages that one cannot sustain without while living in India, and it is these languages that show up, front and centre while engaging in the language debate, but in the midst of it all, it is our regional languages that suffer the brunt of English and Hindi tyranny.


Featured Image Credits- Deccan Herald


Gauri Ramachandran

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Vivekananda College issues a notice prohibiting students from participating in political rallies as Akhil Bhartiya Vidhyarthi Parishad (ABVP) plans its independence day rally.


Vivekananda College of the University of Delhi(DU) bans its students from attending political rallies on a notice issued to the students on 14th August 2019. Signed by the Officiating Principal, Dr Hina Nandrajog, the notice reads, “All the students are advised not to attend any political rally or action will be taken against them.”


The notice came on the account of an Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP)  rally was organised in the college by the Vivekananda unit of the ABVP on the occasion of Independence day.


The ABVP unit of the college circulated a message regarding the Tiranga Rally yesterday where they would gather and chant slogans in the celebration of India’s freedom, the same as what was going to be conducted in several other DU colleges.


Then came the ban.


This wasn’t the first time the college had done so, though. According to Ms Shreya Sharma, the Vice President of the Vivekananda unit of the ABVP, the same had happened on Independence day last year too, where their tirangas had been snatched. In conversation with DU Beat, she elaborated,” Yatra nikalne se pehle unhone notice nikal diya to humne phir college ke gate pe hi aise yatra ki… hum college break me hi karne wale the. and us samey aisi classes bhi nahi hoti. ( They put out the notice before we could begin our rally so we had to make do with a rally at the college gate… we were going to do it in the break, when there arent any classes going on)


However, it seemed that all took a wrong turn because they didn’t have proper permits. Moreover, it was conducted during the classes. According to Ms. Priyanka, the President of the Vivekananda College Student Union, “Humari us time (during the rally) classes chalti hai. Aap ralley mein participate kar sakte ho, par usse pehle aapko permission leni padti hai. Aapne permission li nahi hai aur aap rally nikal rahe ho college mein. Unhone canteen mein halla machana shuru kar diya tha toh is vajah se principal ma’am ne ye notice nikala (we had classes in the period when the rally was being conducted. You can participate in a rally, but you need proper permission to do so. Without permission, how can you initiate rallies in the college. They started creating a ruckus in the canteen which is why the principal put out the notice).


According to Mr. Siddharth Yadav, State Secretary for ABVP Delhi, the notice which was released just a day before the Independence day ironically signifies the college’s negative approach towards students and student activism. Emphasising on the rally held today not being a political rally, but a student rally by a student organisation, he opined,” (this notice) aisi baseless cheez hai, jisko koi rules support nahi karta. Jo ek basic part hai democracy ka, usko khatam karne wala move hai yeh jo administration walon ne aaj liya (it is a very baseless move which is not supported by any rules. The administration has taken a move which hampers a basic part of our democracy).”


In conversation with DU Beat, Mr. Yadav further added that the Vivekananda branch of the ABVP and other officials of that area would be giving a memorandum to the principal tomorrow, criticising this behaviour of the administration. “Anti student activism thought hai yeh. Administration ko thoda sa is cheez ko theek karna chahiye. Agar woh is memorandum pe vichaar nahi karte hai and aage bhi aisa karte hai to we will be compelled to protest against it. (this is an anti student activism thought. If they don’t consider this memorandum and continue their actions, we will be compelled to protest against it).”


Amidst accusations of being anti-student activism, despite DU Beat’s efforts, the principal’s office and the administrative staff were out of reach for comment.


Satviki Sanjay

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Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) initiates plantation drive for freshers to Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University and DU colleges.


In order to facilitate the Sikh community’s contribution towards protecting the environment from climate change, the DSGMC has made it mandatory for all the first-year students of the five colleges in Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University (GGSIPU) and four colleges in the University of Delhi (DU) which are run by the panel, to plant ten saplings each.


DU colleges that will be participating in the plantation drive include Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Khalsa College, Sri Guru Gobind Singh College of Commerce, Sri Guru Nanak Dev Khalsa College and Mata Sundri College for Women. Other colleges that will take part from GGSIPU include Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Institute of Management and IT, Guru Tegh Bahadur Institute of Technology, Guru Nanak College of Education, Guru Ram Dass College of Education, and Guru Nanak Institute of Management.


The move is part of an effort to involve the youth in “green celebrations” to mark the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak, said DSGMC president Manjinder Singh Sirsa. As per the directive, any student taking admission in any of the nine colleges run by DSGMC has to sign an undertaking to plant 10 trees and take care of them until their final year. Students will have to treat this mandate as one of their college projects. They will be asked to submit the report highlighting the status of the trees planted by them accompanied with photographs, on an annual basis.


“DSGMC has asked colleges to identify land for tree plantation. Students can either plant trees in the area provided by their college which can be within the campus or outside the campus on MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi) land, or around their home. With this move, 55,000 trees will be planted this year,” stated Mr Sirsa, in conversation with NDTV.


Founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak Dev Ji once said ‘Pawan Guru Paani Pita Mata Dharat Mahat’, which literally translates into air is our teacher, water is our father and Earth is our mother. This plantation drive for students is a true reflection of his teachings that every student should follow.


Image Credits: Harshit Thukral and Ankit Kumar for DU Beat


Bhavya Pandey

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Aryabhatta College Principal accused of plagiarism by a whistle-blower, DUTA demands an independent probe.


The presence of plagiarism in University level publications has been a concern of the academic community for a long time now. The vice has now hit a reputed University of Delhi when in recent turn of events, the Vice-Chancellor (VC) of the University of Delhi (DU) received a complaint through a whistle-blower, accusing the Principal of Aryabhatta College, South Campus, DU, of plagiarising journal papers and books, six months before applying for the post he currently holds.


This series of events started in 2014, when Aryabhatta College principal Manoj Sinha published five books and 11 journal papers, eight of which and four other works are said to be ‘heavily plagiarised’, casting a shadow of doubt over the authenticity of his work and even employment. According to the complainant, six of these claims have been verified. Apart from this, the complainant has also highlighted the publishing of the same material at two independent places in an attempt by Mr Sinha to take credit for it twice. It is imperative to note that Sinha is also the Secretary of the Delhi University Principals’ Association.


The complainant seems to have used the plagiarism checking software ‘Turnitin’ for this investigation. Last year, Union Minister for the Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD), Prakash Javadekar, had made this software available to universities to enable them in checking the credibility of texts.


In response to these accusations, the Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA), which also received a 243-page dossier detailing the allegations, has made a demand for an independent probe into the matter as of June 25th.


According to the University Grants Commission (UGC) regulations notified in July last year (Promotion of Academic Integrity and Prevention of Plagiarism in Higher Educational Institutions), the penalty for plagiarising above 60% of an academic publication would invite withdrawal of the manuscript, denial of two successive annual increments, a barring from supervising any new master’s or Ph.D scholars for a period of three years, and if benefit has been obtained from plagiarised works but proved on a later date, the benefit would be put in abeyance for a period recommended by the Institutional Academic Integrity Panel.


The UGC has prescribed that the “Academic Performance Indicator” or API of a candidate be looked into critically, for their appointments to the posts of Principal across varsities. These are points allocated to an applicant on the basis of factors such as the number of teaching hours put in, extracurricular activities engaged in and the number of books and research papers published. The system is meant to help incorporate a “transparent, objective and credible methodology of analysis of the merits and credentials of the applicant” read the UGC’s guidelines from 2013. To be eligible for the post of principal, a candidate requires a minimum API of 400 points. Mr Sinha, in an application to the post of Principal to the prestigious Hindu College in 2017, has bagged a score of 660, out of which more than 120 points have been allegedly secured to him by six ‘plagiarised’ texts, reports The Hindu. 

A case like this defeats the university’s ideology of innovation and originality.


Under conditions of anonymity, a student of Aryabhatta College said, “Even though there is no decision in the case, I believe if these accusations are proved accurate, it will be very shameful for the college and the university.”


Defending his case, Mr. Sinha, who has been teaching for 29 years and is up for reappointment for another five-year term as principal of the college on November 22, told The Hindu that the plagiarism may have taken place inadvertently given the immense pressure during years of syllabus revisions to churn out textbooks in time for students to have study material.


Another anonymous student of Aryabhatta College told the DU Beat, “The credibility of these accusations is yet to be checked but this sets a very wrong example for the students as well as stains the reputation of the teaching faculty.”


The complaint if proven credible and the accused proven guilty, is deemed to open many Pandora boxes, putting numerous previous appointments under the scanner.


Image Credits: Manoj Sinha (@msinhadu) on Twitter


Chhavi Bahmba

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As many in the country target a community in hatred, read the account of being marginalised and misunderstood in the country’s capital.

It is easy to protest when there are people to answer your slogans. While in Kashmir, I participated in some of the street protests. I protested when my friends got killed and blinded by the ‘non-lethal’ pellet guns. I knew the risks of participating in such gatherings; death, an injury, or a life full of misery. However, I had made peace with such possibilities under the belief that protesting was indispensable to a democracy. I had concluded that this equanimity was justified.

After shifting to Delhi four years ago, I found myself in a different situation. I came across people who knew little to nothing about the Kashmir conflict, and people who thought they knew everything. The latter was more difficult to deal with. Their primary source of knowledge about Kashmir was Bollywood movies and biased news media. I had two options- one, stay quiet and the other was to make them understand what the conflict is all about. I chose the latter.

As a Kashmiri studying in a premier Indian university, I have witnessed the cognitive dissonance of the supposedly intellectual lot of the country. Being a student of journalism, I cannot run away from these discussions. But it has been a daunting struggle to balance my safety and will to speak the truth. I can recall an event of my early days at college when a police officer was baffled to see Urdu on my Aadhar card. To quench his astonishing curiosity, I amicably mentioned that this is how Aadhar cards are in Kashmir. However, I had amplified his suspicion.Kashmir se hai, phir toh acche se bag check karva” is what he said. Ignorance offers complete impunity to the perpetrators of intolerance.

Repeated shutdowns and curfews forced me to migrate. Delhi was not my first choice. However, I couldn’t get my passport on time because of the ‘thorough’ and slow verification process that only Kashmiris undergo. The conflict followed me to Delhi. I realised that no matter how quiet or non-opinionated I become, I will be attacked for who I am. My survival is a protest in itself. I and various Kashmiri students like me are the educational refugees who have made a decision to leave their homes for an education. Many Kashmiri students, in the past, have been charged with sedition for unjustified reasons. As Kashmiris, our each move is scrutinised, and each action is seen as for or against the state. We brave numerous odds to get an education but then it is our comrades back home who face the worst.

The recent attack in Pulwama unleashed the bigoted ‘reactionary violence’ on our community. A wave of suspensions and xenophobic attacks against Kashmiri students followed. Kashmiris like me who live in various Indian states for a decent education are being attacked on the pretext of supporting the militants in Kashmir. There have been repeated calls for violence against Kashmiris on social media and no action has been taken against the culprits. As a student who has been bearing the brunt of this conflict and the hate that it accompanies, I want peace more than anyone else does but this ‘blood for blood’ attitude will always result in more violence. We must not let this hate consume more blood.

In the end, we are just normal students with our own dreams to achieve. But we cannot afford to let our guard down at a time when our identity and our rights are being trampled upon. A life of normalcy is a distant dream for us but hope for a better future is what keeps us going.

Hope is a weapon. Survival is victory.” –Dunkirk

Feature Image CourtesyKashmir Reader

Maknoon Wani

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Yet another fee hike issue surfaced at IP College for Women as the administration issued the 2019-2020 hostel prospectus with the revised fee structure, which had a considerable rise. Hostel residents were distressed to find the 12,750 increase for new admissions and the semester wise re-admissions.

The college hostels, Kalavati Gupta hostel and the off-campus IP hostel with 280 and 180 seats respectively, boast one of the largest accommodational capacity of DU college hostels but the hike which was claimed as “unreasonable and exorbitant” by residents has put an excessive amount of pressure on the parents who prioritize the safe accommodation of their wards. “At the end of the day, we are forced to pay whatever the administration has put in the prospectus to keep our hostel seat. We really don’t have a choice except to cough up the extra amount for no added facilities,” said one resident on the condition of anonymity. The hostel fee which was 69,900 a semester last year has become 82,650 this year for new admissions and 74,550 from 61,900 for re-admission. IP college hostels already charge almost double the amount that other DU college hostels like Miranda House charge (32,190 for one semester) and this is why this hike has been called preposterous by the residents.


The residents are frequently plagued by numerous issues and the Hostel General Body meeting does more to humiliate the residents who bring up such problems than to amicably resolve them. The hostel seats are allotted based on merit for first years and 75% attendance for second and third years. Residents with low attendance are routinely singled out and their ‘privileges’ like the 10:30 p.m. late nights took away and the 8000 caution deposit forfeited. Requests of residents of the AC rooms, which sometimes becomes the last resort of students with low attendance and hence taken reluctantly, to shift to non-AC rooms upon the availability is also overlooked generally, even after improving their attendance. They have to pay 20,000 extra for the air-conditioning facility every semester, irrespective of the season or the actual usage.


Another predicament that the residents found themselves in was the rule to vacate the hostel exactly a day after the university exams end in April, even though they pay the fees for 11 months. Applications of some students who couldn’t book return tickets in time were not entertained and told they would be considered defaulters if they ‘overstay’.


The Hostel Union remains powerless in front of the administration, even issues like quality of drinking water have been dismissed baseless in the general body meetings by the administration. Many students who find it difficult to afford such high fees still prefer the college hostel just because of the safety concerns and this hike has made it even more difficult for them. The residents wonder why a government institution which should ideally provide affordable accommodation has such high fees in the first place, why there is no transparency and what is the necessity of this sudden unexplained 18% hike.


Anjana Krishna

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