Shivani Dadhwal


The second day at Shri Ram College of Commerce’s Business Conclave garnered the attention of many with its stunning lineup and enlightening discussions. 

Day 2 of Business Conclave 2020, organized by the Students’ Union of Shri Ram College of Commerce kick started with a session by Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Cabinet Minister of Law Justice. Speaking of Digital India, he explained how digital literacy and electronic payments can empower the rural sectors. He emphasized on the importance of new areas of growth like machine learning and artificial intelligence and the leverage given for development in education and healthcare sectors. During the interactive session with the students, Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad discussed cyber security and issues of privacy, money allocation in the judiciary, all India law examinations and initiatives for rural women outreach. He encouraged students to work and learn beyond their comfort zones since there is no substitute for field experience.

The event proceeded with a panel, moderated by Rishabh Shroff, co head and partner Cyril Amarchand Mangal days. Renowned entrepreneurs and businessmen such as Ankit Mehrotra, CEO dineout, Ashneer Grover, CEO and Co-founder Bharat pe, Anchit Nayar, CEO Nykaa and Deepit Purkayastha, Co founder Inshorts formed the part of the panel. Throwing light on the growing startup industry in India the leading businessmen enlightened the youth about the requirements and prerequisites for establishing an industry and start up. This was followed by a Q and A round in which the panel took immense pleasure in answering the queries of the students.

Social activist and eminent thinker, Sunil Ambedkar spoke candidly about the future of students with respect to new India, idea of dissent and his pro stance on Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Registration of Citizens (NRC) among few other things, with senior journalist Rashmi Das.
The major takeaways from his dialogues were his support for small service businesses and inclusion of rural India in making the nation into an economic power. He said,”I went to Guwahati where a person made traditional outfits for which he was critiqued, but his pieces are what constitute the majority of Bollywood movies like Bahubali.”
His leaning for inclusions were in contradiction with his assertive stance of CAA and NRC.

Finally, the showdown was met by the eagerly awaited stand up comedy king, Aakash Gupta who took the students to a brief account of a Delhi life. He was welcomed amidst cheers, laughter and security. His witty and sarcastic jokes along with the funny imitations of the different ways in which the people sneeze and laugh left the crowd with aching stomachs. The entire day was a huge success which not only left the students with a better knowledge about e commerce, startup industry and business development but also took good care of their needs of humor and entertainment.

The event proceeded with a panel, moderated by Rishabh Shroff, co head and partner Cyril Amarchand Mangal days. Renowned entrepreneurs and businessmen such as Ankit Mehrotra, CEO dineout, Ashneer Grover, CEO and co founder Bharat pe, Anchit Nayar, CEO Nykaa and Deepit Purkayastha, Co founder Inshorts formed the part of the panel. Throwing light on the growing startup industry in India the leading businessmen enlightened the youth about the requirements and prerequisites for establishing an industry and start up. This was followed by a Q and A round in which the panel took immense pleasure in answering the queries of the students.

Milind Kamble, the Chairman of the Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DICCI) talked about his contribution to the upliftment of Dalits. He has been honoured with Padma Shri, India’s fourth-highest civilian honour in 2013. He started with a discussion on his personal life and talked about the reasons why he chose to become an entrepreneur and ‘a job giver, not a job seeker’. He also took a moment to talk about his brand Le Dharavi which opened the discussion on employment generation being the need of the hour. He also shared his personal experiences of discussions with a vegetable vendor and other vendors on the issue of employment and mentioned the employment generation by new start-ups like Oyo, Swiggy, Zomato, and others. He also appealed to the students to join financial services and called India a ‘Young Country’ and went on to say that India will remain young even when countries like Japan, UK, USA grow old.


Featured Image Credits: Sarthak Singhal

Priya Chauhan 

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Kriti Gupta

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Aishwaryaa Kunwar

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The 71st Republic Day bestows upon Ekta Kapoor the Padma Shri award. But to what extent does she really deserve this prestigious honour?

Ekta Kapoor, the producer of over a hundred television serials, numerous web series and many more movies, also widely known as the “Czarina of Television”, was conferred the Padma Shri on the 71st Republic Day for her “distinguished service” in the field of art. Having joined the industry in her teenage years, Ekta Kapoor has only grown in her field and captured the time and attention of countless middle-aged women across the country.

The Padma Shri award is the fourth highest civilian award in India. It seeks to recognise achievements in all fields of activities or disciplines where an element of “public service” is involved. My question to you is what exact sort of public service does Ekta Kapoor offer to this country. Apart from corrupting the minds of millions of her viewers with unrealistic exaggerations of stereotypical Indian households, demonizing the women and objectifying their bodies, I highly doubt Kapoor has offered any real contribution to the growth of Indian cinema.

“Where Ekta Kapoor is the Queen of Indian Television she bears the onus of the Indian television being in a state of misery. From creating absolutely irrelevant and idiotic stuff to feed the Indian women, and further adding to the focus of masala and formulaic approach of Indian Television, it never rose from its mediocrity that has nothing to do with reality,” quotes Faizan Salik, a second-year English major student from Jamia Milia Islamia.

The television industry under Kapoor appears to have arrived at a stagnant halt where the producer refuses to broaden her perspective and continues to broadcast pretty much the same plot with different actors. Having bound the scope of these television series to match the mindsets of her majority viewership, Ekta Kapoor has successfully made the Indian Television yet another failure of the country.

Is this the kind of contribution that we look for in our country? Is this the kind of producer we bestow the fourth highest civilian award upon?

Cinema poses a crucial medium to spread awareness to the public at large. I am definitely not against the commercialised cinema meant for the sole purpose of entertainment. But when out of 100s of her serials like Saans Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi, Kasauti Zindagi Ki, etc, not one single show attacks the sexism, social hierarchical structures and basic prejudices in society, I apologise but I find it rather difficult to vouch for our highly glorified producer.

I do not wish to defame Ekta Kapoor. We have all shed tears watching Shor in the City and laughed out loud at Kya Kool Hain Hum. But when you possess such a loud voice that is heard by millions of people, I only expect you to do your duty to the country and speak to them what they really need to listen to. That is when I’ll believe you truly worthy of this honourable award.

Feature Image Credits: The India Idiot


Aditi Gutgutia
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In a recent press release, the University of Delhi (DU) released out a statement condemning the sexual harassment that occurred during Gargi College’s annual cultural fest, Reverie. 

In a recent press release dated 12th February 2020, the University of Delhi released an official statement condemning the sexual harassment that occurred during the college’s annual festival Reverie on 6th February 2020 and standing with the female students and employees of Gargi College in their fight against the incident. In the statement signed by the University’s Registrar, Professor Tarun Kumar Das said, “The University strongly condemned the hooliganism, trespassing and any other incident that violated the modesty of the students, and appealed to the law enforcement agencies to take strong action against the culprits.”

In the statement, the University claims that it sought action taken report from the Principal of Gargi College as soon as it heard the news regarding the incident, with the University’s Proctor meeting with Police personnel and requesting them to deploy policemen at the gates of every college on 11th February 2020. The Proctor also allegedly met with the Deputy Commissioner of the Police (North) and the Dean Students Welfare and Presiding Officer (ICC) of the University on 12th February 2020 at 3 pm to discuss the measures that were to be taken regarding the matter immediately.

The University insists that it is doing everything to harbour a sense of safety amongst students and ensure safe and secure academic campuses for the university and is at a constant vigil for the same. The University had also issued an advisory for all colleges and institutions associated with DU concerning the safety and security of its female students and employees on 10th December 2019 and had constituted a Committee on Women Safety and Security to strengthen the safety and security of female students and employees on 15th January 2020.

“The University reiterates its resolve time continue to work towards ensuring a safe and secure college life for female students in particular. The University appeals to all to take all necessary steps to ensure the safety and security of our female students and employees and respect their dignity,” the press release stated.

Students of Gargi College, University of Delhi, experiences hooliganism, trespassing, and sexual harassment during their annual festival Reverie that took place on 6th February 2020, due to poor administration and lack of proper security. Students of Gargi College have been observing dissent demonstrations against the act, and the College and established a Fact-Finding committee to find evidence and information for reporting it to official personnel. Student and teacher organisations of the university- Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA), Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU), Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthu Parishad (ABVP), National Students’ Union of India (NSUI)- have condemned the incident and held demonstrations across the campus in support of the female students and employees of Gargi College.


Feature Image Credits: Sanyukta Singh

Shreya Juyal

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“The practice of no longer supporting people, especially celebrities, or products that are regarded as unacceptable or problematic,” the repercussions of Cancel Culture in India.

Macquarie Dictionary Named ‘Cancel Culture’ as the Word of the Year 2019. “A term that captures an important aspect of the past year’s Zeitgeist…an attitude which is so pervasive that it now has a name, society’s cancel culture has become, for better or worse, a powerful force,” wrote the Macquarie Dictionary committee in a blog post.

What is ‘cancel culture’ and what does ‘getting cancelled’ really mean? It’s a form of social boycott of someone, most often a celebrity, who would have shared a questionable opinion or has had problematic behaviour that is called out on social media. The idea is to deprive a celebrity of attention or in extreme cases, your money. There’s a hierarchy to transgressions that could get one cancelled. At the bottom of the totem pole is saying something that offends a section of the society to more serious wrongdoings like sexual assault. This, in turn, seems to determine the degrees of being cancelled. However, more often than not, though this fevered dream of cancellation is just that — a dream. In the real world, it rarely has any tangible or long-term effects on the lives of the cancelled.

“They said they would boycott her film. They said they would cut off her head. They said she couldn’t act. Deepika Padukone has spent her career putting ‘them’ in their place”, Raja Sen, a critic and author wrote. Padukone was a victim of name-calling and vile attacks after she visited the campus of Jawaharlal Nehru University to express her solidarity with students who had been grievously injured in violent attacks. Hashtag Boycott Chhapaak trended, and there was social media outrage to boycott the products she endorses. This is a reflection of the erstwhile not talked about side of Cancel Culture, a phenomenon which is not only the copyright of liberal, progressive ‘woke’ people; but a weapon which is wielded by right-wing, fascist trolls alike.

In a post-MeToo India, it’s becoming increasingly challenging as survivors to see predators flourishing in various industries. The term cancel culture is a mere question mark in the face of industries like Bollywood, built on the foundation of predatory behaviour where sexual harassers are more likely to find work than survivors. Such is the case of Utsav Chakraborty, who came back a year after he was cancelled to nullify the accusations targeted at him and proceeded to dox various women under the garb of ‘uncancelling’ himself.

However, all hope is not lost. Female filmmakers such as Zoya Akhtar, Meghna Gulzar, Konkona Sen Sharma and Gauri Shinde, among others, have expressed their solidarity with the movement. In a combined statement shared by Gulzar on Instagram, the filmmakers announced their decision to not work with people guilty of sexual harassment and misconduct. The statement read: “We are here to spread awareness to help create a safe and equal atmosphere for all in the workplace. We have also taken a stand to not work with proven offenders. We urge all our peers in the industry to do the same.”

Personally, Cancel Culture will continue to not work, giving a platform to problematic people if we, as a public that consumes art don’t hold ourselves accountable. It should be a conscious choice of each one of us, to not invest in the art of a person who has previously done something harmful to a particular person or group and has shown no signs of repentance and growth. Because, in the words of comedian Hannah Gadsby, “Pushing for a culture of respect is not the same as cancelling culture.”

Featured Image Credits: Well and Good

Paridhi Puri

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College is not just an educational institution but a foundation that prepares students to survive efficiently in their life ahead. Unlike school, college-going youth has a comparatively lesser workload with respect to studies, leaving them with greater time for themselves. Keeping the same in mind this article lists some of the effective ways to utilise these crucial hours, involvement in which will not only help in giving a boost to the resume but will also be of benefit for the overall personality development.

1. Internships – In today’s world where the number of people for employment becomes two-fold every year, there is a constant increase in the competition for getting jobs. In such a situation the companies of repute with so many people contesting for the same position grants it only to the very best and that’s exactly what an experience of a good internship does, it makes you count among those best. Internships not only provide an experience of the professional world but also, play a significant role in increasing the quality of the CV. Some, of the companies apart from the common perks of a certificate or a letter of recommendation (LOR) also provide a monthly stipend and learning classes to their interns. One can easily get an internship through online sites such as Internshala or through the Placement Cells of their colleges.

2. Campus Ambassador Programs – Imagine yourself being a representative of a big company or industry in your college, interesting, right? this is what campus ambassador programs are all about. Often, companies to promote their brand among students assign positions of ambassadors to girls and boys in different colleges whose responsibilities include not only brand promotion but also the management of various company-related affairs. It is of great benefit for students who look at their careers in marketing or management departments, also the youngsters apart from getting a certificate of completion also gets various goodies for engaging in the same.

3. Freelancing – Shortage of pocket money is one of the biggest trouble for collegiate but, what If you can earn money for your own? Yes, you read it right with skills such as content writing, graphic designing, video editing, photography and much more one can work for startups as well as for well-established firms, earning enough to fill one’s pockets. There are a number of online platforms such as and others which provide opportunities for people to render their services to the companies in need and in turn get paid.

4. Blogging – Is writing your guilty pleasure? Are vocabulary games your favourite pass time? If yes, then what are you waiting for? Create a blog now and introduce your hidden talent to fame and love. A blog provides a platform to showcase one’s thoughts, opinions and emotions. Apart from acting as a source of creative pleasure, It is also a benefit for the students who plan their careers in the fields of writing or journalism. Also, guess what? Blogging has even got you covered for your financial needs ones your blog gets eminent enough to appeal to a large audience, often companies pay to display their advertisements on your blog.

5. Online Courses – Most of us due to a variety of variable reasons are unable to get an opportunity to transform our passion into our careers, and then with the passage of time and in a race of becoming the next billionaire, have a stable life and create our name In the society we often forget about the very activity, the very talent which we once called our passion. But, not anymore in today’s world with many websites providing various online courses one can continue with their activity of interest and that too at the most comfortable location of their homes. These websites also provide the doer with a certificate of completion.

So, utilise your college life not only in discovering places and cities but also in discovering the distinctive abilities and strengths, to unfold your deepest treasures of talent which is only possible by the effective usage of your spare time. So, gear up to plan your upcoming days not from today but from now.

Feature image credits: Victor Matara 

Kriti Gupta 

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With growing discourse in the country about various issues, ‘centrists’ have often come under fire, for choosing to take not so extreme positions on a certain matter. Is the anger justified?

A few days back, I opened Twitter to see a tweet from a very close friend which said: “I hate centrists lmao they’re just closeted sanghis.” I thought to myself that this opinion must be coming from a negative personal experience, except the replies to the tweet were more or less similar, and over the next few days, I came across many such expressions from different people. Naturally, as someone who believes he is a centrist, I was taken aback.

No, I wasn’t a sanghi (a term used to refer to people who belong to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, or more casually thrown around to refer to people who support the BJP). However, the political scenario of the country has changed so drastically of late that you’re either a ‘bhakt’ or a ‘commie’, a polarisation that is incredibly problematic and has essentially drowned out centrist voices-people who agree (or disagree) with the right and the left equally.

This trivialisation of the centre in today’s discourse is something that needs to be addressed, especially considering how it has been crucial to India’s existence (till 2014) and how it is the need of the hour at the moment. In India, there is an increasing need for a strong political centre (the Congress, for all its claims of being centrist, is simply not a political alternative at the moment) because of the very simple reason that centrism is the most important quality of India’s politics.

Centrism aims at ensuring harmony in India’s diversity instead of making its contradictions prominent, it provides a broader space for dissent and ensures the welfare of the people in every sense. In other words, centrism aims to fix exactly those problems that are visible in the country today-pitting of our differences against each other and a rampant curbing of any and all forms of dissent.

But how can we not take extreme sides in a nation where politics has already been made into a binary? The answer to that is that it might not be a left vs right battle as it’s made to look like. At the end of the day, an average Hindu is not a bigot as the left would like you to believe, and the average Muslim is not someone looking to establish their own state, as the right would want you to believe. They’re common people who want to get by in their daily lives.

This is a concept called the ‘Exhausted Majority’ that The Hidden Tribes report talks about too. It is a term used to describe how people eventually tire of a long period of polarisation. India has seen a battle between extremes for far too long, and eventually, people will demand a moderate government.

That is one major reason behind the Aam Aadmi Party’s recent success in Delhi because they’ve chosen to focus on core issues that affect the Aam Aadmi (common man) like electricity, water supply, education instead of polarisation, which the BJP and Congress have chosen to do.

But if the right is clearly so bad, then why don’t we counter right-wing extremism with the left-wing? The answer to that is simple, extremes, in general, are bad. the left’s proven to be ineffective far too many times and has been losing support in India too, with Kerala being the only state where the Communist Party of India remains in power. More importantly, the Left does not appeal to the common Indian man, who wants poverty alleviation but also development, something the left cannot provide.

The answer to this country’s problems lies in a moderate way of politics, as non-appealing as it may sound to the intellectuals of today. There is a need to look beyond one’s privileged position and explore the ground realities in order to realise the same.

Picture Credits: Amatopia

Khush Vardhan Dembla

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Gandhi continues to be regarded as one of the greatest visions in texts, facts and figures of history to all but few, Godse and Godse’s Children, here on Martyrs Day we trace back the underlying significance of it.

Is death often quoted for remembering the dead or the murderer is an equal participant in the remembrance? The Modern Indian Politics lends its current stature to many significant instances that shaped parliaments, identities and political heroes and villains of Indian discourse. I strongly believe and advocate that the entire political stigma since 1947 is therefore based on the three Gandhi(s) (Mahatma, Indira and Rajiv) and their assassination(s), which if not wholly has substantially formulated the most of it.

Mahatma Gandhi’s assassination is one of the most important markers of history, documented in numerous forms and writings. Perhaps, no non-literary Indian after Vishnu’s Dashaavtaara has contributed for the inspiration of Indian literature as much as Mahatma Gandhi; his murder escalated writers to preserve his teachings and ideas in whatever available form and the news of this murder spread like a plague, where Nathuram Godse became the point of rage.

On 30th of January 1948, Godse plotted for Gandhi’s life at Birla House with Narayan Apte and 6 others holding the latter guilty for appeasing the minorities especially the Muslims. In his justification of the act, Why I Killed Gandhi, Godse is seen as a devout of Gandhi who respected his thoughts on untouchability and Swaraj, but it was the overshadowing of Savarkar’s influence that clouded his ideology.

By the end of his defence on 5th May 1949 at Punjab High Court, Peterhoff, Simia, Godse wrote, “To my mind, there could be only one reason for Gandhiji and his followers to give their consent to the creation of Pakistan and it is that these people were accustomed to make a show of hesitation and resistance in the beginning and ultimately to surrender to the Muslim demands.”

This whole expression captivates the premise of Godse’s utterance of defence akin to what Brutus did in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, but a closer look at this does remind us of the similar fallacies on Brutus’ part as we might find in Godse; an undetectable but crucial assumption that Gandhi’s claims and testimonies regarding this issue needs to be dismissed as hypocritical, idiosyncratic or nonsensical- describing them as meticulous lies or ideas with no reality.
Asghar Wajahat’s ‘Godse @ Gandhi Dot Com’ reiterates an important question how crucial are Gandhi and Godse to each other and if survived what grandeur or downsize would have poured on their parts if the play’s conversation between Gandhi and Godse did actually give a chance to the political players in reality.

Where millions offer their condolences to the Father of the Nation on 30th of January, many celebrate Godse as a martyr and reject Gandhi as the Father of the India we know, they believe him to be Father of Pakistan, describing his assassination as vadh of a demon. In a meeting in Bombay in 1993, ‘Gandhi was even called a traitor’ by Nathuram’s younger brother, who was an RSS Kaaryakarta, although the RSS sides itself from accepting Godse as a Sangh Karyakarta opposed to Godse(s) claim.
The Gandhian vision seems incomplete without addressing the questions of many like Godse that Gandhi himself provides in his study, Godse’s entire identity and those of his followers are based as an antithesis of the Gandhian philosophy.

Image Credits: Youngisthan
Faizan Salik
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Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) is promoting its Digital India campaign with full gusto- in all the wrong ways.

While, Bhartiya Janata Party, has been notorious for a couple of things, the most ridiculous of them all is the BJP IT Cell. The party is known to have a large social media team that works on sites like WhatsApp, Twitter, and Facebook to spread misinformation, slander, and rumors.

BJP seems to have it all figured out: the fastest way to get to the public now is to use social media. And while they already do have media houses in their pockets, social media is where everyone is. This is why, the large team is known to trend hate hashtags, share doctored videos and photos, create fake news, troll people online and even use bots to spread its propaganda. The IT Cell essentially functions like an army; it is an organized army of trolls, belonging to the party, always ready for an attack.

PM Modi is also infamous for following trolls, fake news, and threatening accounts. Kuldeep Bhandari, a man who proclaims to be a ‘social media activist’ at the BJP IT Cell, tweeted a photo of Trump pointing at Modi with the caption, “Ghar mein ghuskar kaise maarte hain mujhko isi ne sikhaya. (he taught me how to hurt people inside their own homes)” He is, unsurprisingly, followed by the PM.  “Mr. Modi is possibly the only leader in the world, who actually follows handles which give rape threats, death threats, actually put out incitement videos, peddle fake news,” said Swati Chaturvedi, the author of I Am a Troll: Inside the Secret World of the BJP’s Digital Army to CNN.



(Image Source: Kuldeep Bhandari)

The very head of the BJP IT Cell, Amit Malviya, had a twitter timeline selling pornographic content and tweets providing Hot Sexi Gerls Free before him getting this position with the party.

The IT Cell has always been very active on social media: its WhatsApp forwards remains one of the prime reasons why BJP gathered such mass support. However, it recently keeps coming in the limelight. After the anti-CAA protests countrywide, their presence online has intensified. In what appears to be their panicked and thoughtless reaction, they can be seen attacking and trolling anyone who goes even slightly anti-BJP. While a lot of times these trolls are genuinely far-right Modi-bhakts, it is also found that a lot of times they just happen to be unemployed people working online for a small stipend.

When Amit Shah created a new hotline for people to phone in and show their support of the Citizenship Amendment Act, thousands of tweets popped up sharing the number. These tweets offered ‘free sex’, hot girl pics, free coupons, free Netflix and amazon prime membership, and other such attractive offers to people who called the number. So much so that even the Netflix India official account tweeted and asked people not to fall for the scam and to “use someone else’s Netflix account if you want free membership, like the rest of us.” When the publication Boomlive called the social media head Amit Malviya regarding these activities, he “cut the call hearing our query”, as reported by the site.

After Deepika Padukone was seen at a solidarity protest at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) after the JNU violence orchestrated, allegedly, by ABVP, thousands of trolls lashed out on her, talking about boycotting her then-upcoming movie Chhapaak. Trolls all over India posted photos of them getting their tickets refunded; the catch? They all had the exact same seat number.

Anandi, a student of Kamala Nehru College said, “The cell is the living embodiment of being cheap and the level to which one can fall only to propagate lies and enforce their ideology on the public. False lies, rape threats, trolling, harassment, this is what the cell is synonymous with. When we asked for employment, this is not what we meant.”

The BJP Delhi official twitter handle also trolled Arvind Kejriwal in the light of upcoming Delhi elections and tweeted ‘memes’ on him. These ‘memes’ showed the problems of the city as the ‘art’ and had pictures of the Chief Minister as the ‘artist’. One of the tweets of this series, which ironically are pinned to their twitter page, came under fire for being Islamophobic as it showed a burning bus as the ‘art’ and Kejriwal in the Islamic Hat Taqiyah as the ‘Artist’.

Screenshot 2020-01-23 at 5.14.57 PM

(Image Source: BJP Delhi)

“BJP IT Cell is clearly very ignorant considering the issues that come under the jurisdiction of the central government. BJP’s twitter account trolled Kejriwal for Delhi’s rising traffic problem while completely neglecting the fact that Delhi traffic comes under the central government’s jurisdiction and they chose to stick to this even after some people pointed it out. I mean that’s just stupid and a very condescending move on their part,” said Suhani, a student from SGTB Khalsa College.

So, not only are their actions morally incorrect, but also illogical and ill-informed. But it is not as if people aren’t standing up to this virus-like ecosystem.

Amit Malviya was in the news again for saying the Shaheen Bagh protesters were all paid Rs 500-700 by the Congress party to protest. For this statement, two women of Shaheen Bagh filed a legal notice under Section 500 of the IPC (Defamation) and demanded an apology and Rs 1 crore in damages from the social media head.

A trick learned from stan twitter, the best way to engage with these trolls is to not engage. Accounts like these thrive on visibility, and the more engagement they get, the more are their ideas promoted. Report and Block: that is the only way their impact can cease. And when science has developed antiviral medicines for actual overpowering viruses, what are a group of sheep-like humans in a virus-like colony.

Featured Image Credits: Dhruv Rathee

Satviki Sanjay

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Since ancient times we humans have expressed our ideas and ideologies via imageries like literature, paintings, and symbols. But in recent times we have, seemingly, forgotten to appreciate the art.

The recent controversy on Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s nazm, Hum Dekhenge (We shall witness), highlights the very fact that we as Indians have to develop a sense of political humour and tolerance. Politics is a part of our daily life and still, we miss its satirical quality. Faiz’s poem, Hum Dekhenge, written in 1979, was a clarion call for resistance against Zia ul Haq’s authoritarian and fundamentalist rule. Written for a predominantly Muslim audience it effectively used Islamic imagery to denounce the fundamentalism and authoritarianism that had become the hallmark of the regime.

Though Faiz was a leftist himself but wrote the nazm using Islamic imagery which made the nazm all the more effective, moving and revolutionary. In 1986, it became extremely popular after Pakistani singer Iqbal Bano sang it in the presence of 50,000 people in Lahore. The fact that she wore a saree made the rendition even more defiant, for Zia had banned the saree, calling it Hindu.

It is the art of political satire that remains relevant even after decades. The couplet, “Yeh daagh daagh ujaalaa, yeh shabgazida seher; Woh intezaar tha jiska, yeh woh seher to nahin (This blemished light infused with the darkness of night; Surely, this isn’t the dawn we waited for so eagerly),” is relevant for the so-called ‘Communist Nations’ like China and North Korea, even today.

The easiest thing to do these days is to hurt someone’s sentiments, we have been made to believe that it is only by asserting our view that it prevails. The art of political graffiti and literature teaches us the tolerance of dealing with various views or thoughts. A piece of literature never dictates its interpretation in the reader’s mind. Similarly, political graffiti just showcases the thoughts of the artist and doesn’t force itself on anyone. If we understand that various views be it rightist, leftist or liberal can thrive in our world then, we won’t have any more controversies like the ones in Faiz’s Hum Dekhenge and the arrest of Ganzeer.

Political leaders talk about the lack of tolerance in India, however, they are its flag bearers. We see the right-wing always criticising the leftists and vice-versa. This daily act is the testimony of the fact that nearly all the ideologies around the world, be it religious or social or political always tries to subsume the other. A world without dissent is either a utopian one or a dreamland itself. In a time of political and economic uncertainty, the role of art and expression has never been more important. Cultural leaders – from filmmakers to cartoonists – bring new perspectives to tackle challenging issues and inspire people to fulfil their potential.

But artists around the world are under threat, with many arrested or even killed for expressing their ideas and showing any signs of dissent. It is important to understand that we need to create a long-term goal of what we want to achieve in a social space wherein all forms of art, ideologies, and thoughts thrive.

If we understand that humanity can achieve greater heights only when there is dissent and freedom, we can move a step towards a better society. If we can understand that forcing an ideology on someone just because you find it to be the ‘correct’ one would only result in triviality. No one can change their thinking in just a moment, it instead takes years on end. And we should be patient enough to let dissent thrive and give it time to change into an agreement. Lastly, I would be perfectly fine if you do not agree with my opinion and think otherwise!

Featured Image Credits- Sabari Venu

Aniket Singh Chauhan

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Have you ever faced a situation when your opinions don’t resonate with the masses? It gets worse when your kith and kin are loggerheads with your opinions, and personal relationships suffer.

The political scenario has heated up like never before in the country, where we can see everyone having an opinion about the current events in the nation. While protesting is everyone’s legal right, it becomes very difficult to dissent when your own family and friends disregard your political opinions, which might turn personal relationships sour. The current scenario can trap one into their own spiral of silence.

Many students struggle to explain to their parents the reasons behind them protesting. Lashed as ‘immature’ and ‘brainwashed’, many are disregarded for having a certain political opinion which builds up to spoil personal relations.

Anandi Sen, from Kamala Nehru College, DU said, “Several school friends and flings have parted ways solely because of my political opinions. I am no longer in touch with them, both online and offline. However, my family still, sadly, remains that one community which cannot be parted with due to my opinions, this simply results in an eerie silence on the dinner table and awkward gazes at the newspaper headline.”

While it may not be worth losing friends over politics, as politics is unpredictable, but we can try to convince the other party and come to terms with the situation. “The Personal is Political. I can only laugh at people who want to keep politics out of their conversations and relations, remember, their ideology reflects who they are and what they think, their ideology is their thought. Why would you acknowledge anyone who believes in the systematic oppression of a different community?” continues Anandi.

A lot of us are surrounded by families who lack empathy and peers who lack cognisance, and often we find ourselves in situations of administration clampdown over peaceful protests. When a healthy democracy falls to rot, the pillar of dissent stands tall and braves its way through the mayhem of destruction. Dissent puts forward our ideas of patriotism on open roads for us to claim back, braving a ‘mobile addicted’ generation to fight back against malicious lies being peddled on the internet.

What concerns us, more than ever today, is the permeation of dissent in our lifestyle and apolitical spaces. We cannot allow our families to bask in their problematic politics anymore, one that encourages blatant injustices and discrimination against communities. Initiating uncomfortable conversations in our own homes is necessary to combat the years of propaganda that has been fed in our lives.

Countering lies with facts, and calling out the lack of journalistic objectivity by prime time news channels that are owned by corporate and political overloads is important. We need to consciously invest in artists who don’t enable an authoritarian government, and who let the masses bleed in a bid for fame. Do not co-opt another communities’ story, it’s important for the movement to be intersectional in nature, one that allows every community to have a voice that is not snatched in a bid for the populace.

We are also going to learn things that make us question ourselves, our place in the world, and our beliefs. We’ll be confronted with a reality that hurts, which makes us defensive, and even angry. Dissent helps us realise and recognise the facets of our environment that were inherently problematic but went unnoticed. The aim has to be included by the virtue of our dissenting spaces, and not to create an exclusionary dialogue that is at odds with the very idea of a flourishing democracy.

Featured Image Credits: Sriya Rane for DU Beat

Sriya Rane

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Paridhi Puri

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