With both achievements and adversities on its plate, DU completed 100 years this year. Is this milestone praiseworthy or an indication of stagnation over the years?*

100 years since the birth of one of the most prestigous educational institutions in the country. 100 years since history started soaking itself within the red walls of different corners of Delhi. 100 years since students’ voices began to gain prominence among the masses. Happy 100th birthday, University of Delhi. Thank you for being a rosy dream that took its time to reveal the thorns of hidden behind the petals of (in)excellence.

Surviving 100 years in this changing world is, indeed, an accomplishment. One that deserves congratulations. However when the world was changing, did DU care to change for the betterment of the base of its foundation, the students? To an extent favourable by the administration? Yes. To an extent aspired by the student community? No. DU is yet to be the university I was promised on my admission, yet to be the institution 70,000 students are sold as a dream every year. DU is so much more than the brand name it provides and we as students are being turned into believing the supremacy possesed by this clout alone.

Despite acting as the womb for students’ holistic development for a century, negligence towards their issues and demands is still a concern unaddressed. Despite acting as the breeding ground for student politics for a century, arbitrary assault and detainment of protestors is still seen. Despite claiming itself to be a melting pot of students from nooks and corners of the country, discrimination yet persists with stereotypes attached to each state, each community and each individual. I agree to the fact that such revolutionary changes can come about only gradually but wasn’t 100 years enough for the same? Will there be change in the next 100 years or will sluggishness be DU’s return gift to its students?

To DU, I say: instead of having pompous shows to ascertain your glory over other academic institutions in the country, maybe consider listening to the woes of your students. Listen to students who demand their rights through the medium of protests in front of Arts Faculty. Listen to the students who have to spend numerous hours looking for internships after graduation because of the lack of skill-based programmes. Most importantly, listen to the Professors who make DU what it is. The sea of expectations never ceases, I agree but does that mean even the basic ones should be ignored? If you ask me if I’m proud to be a part of DU, my answer would surely be positive. Yes, I’m proud to be a part and to become an alumnus of DU but…And this but always remain. DU, precisely, DU administration, it’s time for you to make your birthday resolutions. I hope you don’t break them like every other promise of yours.


*This article first appeared in our physical newsletter Volume 16, Issue 5. Don’t forget to grab your copy of the latest edition of our newspaper every Wednesday!


Featured Image Credits: Devesh Arya for DU Beat

Himasweeta Sarma

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With the first three months of the year gone, let us look back at how these months went ahead for us and what will the rest of the year have in store for us.

In the blink of an eye, I remember dosing off to sleep at 4 A.M. on the first of January, after all the New Year wishes were attended to, and now as the fourth month of this year has started, I simply wonder how and where did these three months go.

The first trimester of the year, for any University of Delhi (DU) student is absorbed in the fest season, either in attending it or, as a participant, running every other day for competitions in some or the other host college. The intensity of the course takes a back-seat with the incessant strikes, which we callously enjoy, without truly acknowledging their purpose.

I would like to ask a simple question- all of us make New Year’s resolutions, but, do we even stick to them? While I genuinely don’t believe in the concept of making resolutions particularly when the calendar flips the date to 01/01, I believe any time can be the perfect time to turn over a new leaf. Without digressing further, let me get back to my question. What is the strategic realism to these resolutions, as hardly a few make it past the first week of their marked promises, before narrowing back to their old lifestyle. Annie Rana, a literature student of Maitreyi College, feels, “The fact that every week, month, or situation asks out of us different ways to react or behave, so keeping resolution as a sole means to discipline (yourself), won’t really help.”

As every year has something or the other in it to look forward to, 2019 too has witnessed a lot so far in these three months. Talking about the personal, national, and the international front, we have faced a tough three months to begin with, and while the next trimester has already started, the election fury will reign over as the midtown madness this summer. The next trimester will look forward to ‘voting for the first time’ for a majority of us, or having to make career-related choices, or entering a new path of life; every demarcation of the calendar has been split with a beautiful finesse.

“Every month, I track my growth. Some acts are bound to be childish, but I tend to see a progression in the maturity,” says Heena, a student of Maitreyi College as she looks at her journey in 2019 so far. To map out your journey is a really important thing and when most of us miss out on this, a sense of existential crisis hits us. To look back when I started college, the change from 2017 to 2019, not just as a big bracket of 730 days, but as the mental growth which chartered into me is also something which can be represented as a progressing draft, in the fourth quadrant.

The sentiment that each year holds is also important. As I look at the batch which will graduate this year, 2019 marks as this primal year which will witness a major change in them, and while three months have buzzed past us, the sinking of them in the memory and action won’t. It was a series of lasts. Talking to my seniors, I could figure out how every competition, every fest, every department activity associated with the college, would be their last. With that emotion flaring in, the efforts, the smile, and the hidden tears were a mixed bag of emotions through the entire three months. As this month will go ahead as the ‘vidaai’ or the farewell time for them, the bucketful of memories they take on with them is sublime.

To 2019 so far, you haven’t been particularly kind, and I don’t expect you to get sweet and mellow, anytime soon. Conclusions are sweeter, cathartic. I have been exhausted and drained completely, and in these three months, the motivation has been sucked out of me (too bad the exams are right around the corner). As the summer will settle in with the hope of getting off a daily routine, i.e. college, I will find a relief (I suppose so), from the experience which was- the daily running to Sadar Bazaar, as the department and college fests lined up, being on the phone 24*7 for sponsorships, scripting my real conversations as well! From not being able to take time out with the friends and sit in the comfort or solace each other like we do as a routine to finding the infinitesimal balance between studies, societies, interning, and working in a media house, from forming mental ticks in my mind as the work load started gliding away, one after the other, swiftly, to sitting back and sipping tea in nostalgia and having the worst phase of constant bouts of low self-esteem and worth, and finding the phase of confidence back; I can say these three months took a lot from me and gave me back a bitter-sweet collection of everything.

To 2019, I promised myself this year will be a sole devotion to travel and exploration- the physical and the mental aspect of this duality. And as every month, a new travel destination finds its spot in my heart and I set forth to plan it out, every place I visit, makes a spiritual connection within me and with this hope, the year will progress with its own set of ups and downs which I will look forward to with an open heart.

Feature Image Credits: Eastside Projects

Avnika Chhikara

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New Year Resolution has been a funny custom we’ve observed since childhood, but is strangely one of those few which haven’t been forced onto us as “tradition”.

But has it been any good to invest the mind into all those never accomplished Resolutions? Before venturing on to rant about it, let us peep into the origin of the custom that helps us realise our levels of procrastination!

Peeking into its history, we find that the “New Year Resolution” custom comes from the Babylonians who were believed to make promises to their Gods in hopes of earning good favour in the coming year. Quite akin to many of us, their resolutions were also centered around getting out of debt in the year ahead. Moreover; it was our very own friend, Julius Caesar who made January the first month of the year in honour of the Roman god of beginnings, Janus. The two traditions were gradually adopted by the people of different civilisations.

It was however after the Americans’ adoption of the custom that the world started to follow it blindly, just like every other American custom.

But hang on! What we need to ask ourselves is, “Do we really need a New Year Resolution, despite knowing the never materialising outcome of it?” Why is it necessary to burden the mind with yet another unachievable task, adding on to the long list of to-do’s, just because of our American counterparts’ decision to make a resolve each year? A New Year Resolution tells us to start afresh and take up one or more than one task of self improvement, which sounds like an amazing idea at the face of it. But is it really easy to disregard all that is already going on in life and resolve to figure out an all new issue on January first? We’re all caught up in one or the other issue at all times in our life, so why not solve those issues, close an old chapter and start off with a new resolution the other day! Every morrow brings to us an opportunity to close old chapters bothering our existence, and start off with a resolve to make life better. So why wait for the coming January to make it a happier existence?

Adding to the misery is the fact that these resolutions we’ve been making for years are forgotten merely after a month, making it another vain attempt of following the custom. There are, however; many who achieve their New Year Resolution goals; but sadly a very small fraction of all those who take it up in the beginning. Funnier it is, that the last years’ pending resolution of losing weight or quitting smoking becomes the current year’s, and that is how we keep procrastinating until we finally decide to do away with the idea.

It is time that we rethink following the custom that takes us on to a guilt trip or a level up in procrastination.

Resole to resolve everyday this year, maybe?

Priyal Mahtta
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