January 13, 2012

Whither “Relaxations”? Defeat the lapdogs of Lyngdoh and the Administration! Resist the capitulation to Lyngdoh by AISA, SFI, AISF, ABVP, NSUI, Y4E - the opportunist alliance of the agents of privatization!


Enact legislation “banning any form of political activity on campuses of universities & educational institution
 including in any union activities.”-Birla-Ambani Report on Education

“it is not appropriate to permit the level of interference being exercised by political parties at present, as the primary function of a university is, after all, education, and not political indoctrination” – Lyngdoh Committee Report

“Students must pay the increased charges this time and let me tell you clearly - there will soon be further hikes in the coming days….This issue should not be unnecessary politicized” – Dean of Students, JNU on the hiked establishment charges this semester

The fight against Lyngdoh Committee Recommendations (LCR) was never an easy fight. And so are not the fights against privatization, neoliberal policies and imperialism. LCR was instituted in line with the Birla-Ambani report on higher education which had clearly identified students’ politics as the main hindrance towards privatization of higher education. In line with the larger neo-liberal agenda of LPG ruthlessly pursued by all parliamentary political parties, the report clearly stated its aim of converting education into a commodity and a business venture to be bought and sold. Under the garb of curbing ‘money’ and muscle power’, both of which were never an issue in JNU, the real fangs of LCR was laid bare when the JNUSU was one of the first students’ union election to be stayed. The real issue at hand was the assault of the forces of privatization, which the militant students’ movement in JNU has always challenged.

The students of the campus, aware of this nefarious game plan had thrown a direct challenge to Lyngdoh by declaring an in toto rejection of the Lyngdoh Committee Recommendations. But the revisionists and reactionaries soon betrayed this resolute struggle against LCR and opened the doors of compromise in the name of “relaxations”. It is this unity of compromise that forged the grand rainbow alliance that today stands naked in their abject surrender to Lyngdoh. Bereft of all principles and scruples, afraid of questions and discussions, these forces today are at their shameless best. And that is why they can still afford to call this abject surrender of theirs as a “great advance” and a “qualitative change” even after the Supreme Court has rejected almost all of their claimed “relaxations”. Here they are today advocating the total capitulation to the designs of the neo-liberal agenda of the state, the dream of the Birlas and Ambanis, the idea of Lyngdoh. It is this capitulation that is reflected in the emboldening of the administration in its drives towards fee hike and privatization.   

The façade of “relaxations” was built up through persistent lies over the last semester by all these pro-Lyngdoh forces in unison. These were projected as great prizes even when it kept the most potent clauses of Lyngdoh intact. Not a word was spoken regarding the brahminical casteist merit criteria enshrined in Lyngdoh. The Grievance Redressal Cell that embodies the most draconian measure of Lyngdoh to emasculate the students union turning it into a puppet in the hands of the administration remained intact. The former Gen Sec of AISA even lied to the students from the stage of the UGBM pleading the case for GRC. While claiming that the GRC would only be active during the elections, she carefully omitted the very next line which states that it would remain a permanent feature of the university. The most salient feature of the JNUSU election process – public meetings, political figures from outside politics, debates – still remained banned according to LCR amidst lies and silences. The age restrictions on BA/MA students still remained intact despite the fact that in JNU many students start their education late or are forced to discontinue in between. All these reactionary and anti-student clauses regarding which there were no “relaxations” still persist today. And alongside, the so called “relaxations” – the greatest achievement of these compromised forces – also stands rejected today after the 8th December Supreme Court judgment. The sham of it is illustrated overleaf.

Today, when after the empty promises of relaxations have fallen flat, the opportunist alliance still wishes to conduct elections accepting Lyngdoh in the name of”restoring JNUSU”. Therefore it is extremely important to remind ourselves that JNUSU for us had never been merely a electoral platform. It was always a platform of struggle. What made JNUSU the most potent weapon in the hands of the student community was its sovereignty and power to fight for the rights of the students, for peoples’ struggles across the country. And for all these it derived its strength from the JNUSU constitution. The spent forces of the opportunist alliance are only interested in electoral politics by any means, which is nothing but the reflection of their degenerate parliamentary politics. For them the 40 year history of struggle of the JNUSU is not worth much. Being the agents of privatization, they have nothing to lose by turning JNUSU into a puppet in the hands of the administration by arguing in favour of LCR in the name of “elections at any cost’. It is this very politics of compromise that DSU stands against and poses the alternative of elections to the Joint Struggle Committee according to JNUSU Constitution. It is only this sovereign body – free of Lyngdoh and the administration’s interference – that can wage an uncompromising struggle against LCR and reclaim our union.     

The façade of “relaxations” exposed…
JNUSU Constitution vis-à-vis Lyngdoh
The claimed “relaxations” in last UGBM
Status of “relaxations” after 8th December Supreme Court judgment

While the JNUSU Constitution provides for full autonomy of the Election Committee, Lyngdoh asks for the formation of a Grievance Redressal Mechanism.



The institution of the JNUSU Election committee would be preserved. However a Grievance Redressal Mechanism would be formed.

REJECTED.

“Insofar as grievance mechanism is concerned, we think no change is called for.”

While the JNUSU constitution puts no bar on age limit for contesting elections, LCR puts restrictions of 22 yrs, 25 yrs and 28yrs for BA, MA and Mphil/PHD respectively.


30 yrs for Mphi/PHD

ACCEPTED.

While the JNUSU Constitution pts no limits on repetition of candidature, LCR says once on office bearers and twice on council.

Twice each for office bearers and councilors.

REJECTED.

“So far as the repeat criteria is concerned, we do not think that any change is required. We reiterate that the elections should be held in accordance with the Lyngdoh Committee recommendations.”


While JNUSU Constitution has no such requirement concerning disciplinary action, the LCR requires that candidates has no previous criminal records, i.e., have not been tried or convicted of any criminal offence or misdemeanor. It also requires that candidates have not been subject to any disciplinary action by university authority.


Changed to ‘Can contest unless charged or convicted in’ for Criminal Cases.

REJECTED.

“Similarly, in cases of criminal record of candidates, the recommendation of Lyngdoh Committee should be followed.”


While JNUSU Constitution puts no restriction on photocopies and printed materials during election campaign, LCR requires that no photocopies or printed material is used for this purpose.


Photocopies would be allowed along with hand-written material.

CONDITIONAL

“Photostat copies of pamphlets and manifestosmay be permitted within the limit of Rs 5000 as recommended by the Lyngdoh Committee.”


While JNUSU constitution requires that the elections are held within 12 weeks of opening of university and the entire duration of election process should be completed within 4 weeks after formation of the EC; LCR demands that it is held within 6-8 weeks of opening of university and the entire election process be completed within 10 days.


Elections to be held within 12 weeks of opening of university and to be completed within 10 days after withdrawal of nomination.

REJECTED.

“One of the issues is for the time period of holding of elections. After considering the suggestions given by the learned amicus and learned counsel for the parties, we do not think that any variation in Lyngdoh Committee recommendation in that aspect is called for.”



No Puppet Union!
Reject Lyngdoh Committee Recommendations in toto!
Hold elections to the Joint Struggle Committee as per the JNUSU Constitution!

“Relaxations”: A tale of Lies, Betrayals & Surrender! Defeat the spineless sell-out to Lyngdoh!


What had started in February 2008 with an unanimous in toto rejection of Lyngdoh in a historic UGBM has reached a position today when we are about to conduct an UGBM to ask ourselves whether we are willing to hold elections as per LCR. What a pity. What had started in 2008 with the reactionary Y4E being isolated in one corner, here we are today with rainbow alliance of the revisionists and reactionaries all united in an opportunist alliance, ready to surrender our struggle against Lyngdoh. But to us, and to all those students who are still resolute in their fight against LCR, this does not come as a surprise. What more can be expected from these renegade degenerate sold out forces and their politics of compromise and surrender? Ever since the move to enter into the arena of negotiations betraying our resolve to wage an uncompromising battle, the outcome was inevitable. Despite the very many face-saving tactics being deployed by these pro-Lyngdoh forces in the name of “relaxations”, the logical outcome of it has unfolded gradually and is most obvious today: kneeling down to Lyngdoh. Today, after the 8th December judgment, there aren’t even any face-saving tools for these cronies of Lyngdoh to couch their spineless sell out.     
Debate on Lyngdoh Committee Recommendations (LCR), in the last semester ended with the pro-Lyngdoh forces claiming that they have negotiated (read begged) and “won” 6 relaxations from the Amicus curie. With this they went to the UGBM. The pro-Lyngdoh band wagon led by SFI-AISA did not have anything written to defend the claims that they were making regarding the relaxations that they had supposedly got from Gopal Subramanium, Though this was pointed out repeatedly by DSU, they lied to the students taking them for granted. DSU opposed them in the UGBM too precisely because even with those bogus relaxations the very purpose of LCR which was to emasculate the elected union and depoliticize the election process remained intact. We also knew very well that the Supreme Court which in the first place stayed JNUSU election, was under no circumstance going to compromise on the LCR even as an interim measure. And on the 8th of December, the Supreme Court judgment has stripped the agents of Lyngdoh laying bare their betrayals and lies. No wonder they are in such hurry today to seal the surrender even before the students are aware of the latest developments that has undone the entire farce of “relaxations”.  
On the 8th of December, the Supreme Court gave its verdict on the interim application which not only showered praises upon LCR, but also completely rubbished all the claims of “relaxations”. Regarding LCR the verdict reads:  “We are happy to note that after those recommendations are given, the standard of fairness in the matter of holding elections to students' bodies across the country has substantially improved…Since we are of the view that the recommendations of the Lyngdoh Committee are very salutary in nature, we have not allowed any major changes except those which are absolutely necessary.” During the arguments, Gopal Subramaniam placed both the arguments – for relaxations and that of Y4E for full implementation of LCR. This amply exposed the farce of the so called promises of relaxations being parroted so boisterously by the ambassadors of Lyngdoh in the last UGBM. And what followed thereafter burst the bubble of relaxations built up with insistent lies over the last semester.
Ø  “One of the issues is for the time period of holding of elections. After considering the suggestions given by the learned amicus and learned counsel for the parties, we do not think that any variation in Lyngdoh Committee recommendation in that aspect is called for.”
Ø  “So far as the repeat criteria is concerned, we do not think that any change is required. We reiterate that the elections should be held in accordance with the Lyngdoh Committee recommendations.”
Ø  “Similarly, in cases of criminal record of candidates, the recommendation of Lyngdoh Committee should be followed.”
Ø  “Insofar as grievance mechanism is concerned, we think no change is called for.”
Therefore today, with one farce of a relaxation on age-limit (two years for only research scholars) and photocopy (granted with conditions), the rest of the LCR comprising the most dangerous Grievance Redressal Cell remains intact. But, the celebratory tone with which this opportunist alliance led by SFI/AISA accepted the above judgment is not surprising. Relaxation, or no relaxation, these revisionist forces, shameless as they are, want to clear the grounds for Lyngdohized elections at the earliest. The chronicle of this compromise has been long foretold.
But at the same time, we must remind them that the struggle against Lyngdoh is far from over. DSU calls upon the student community to defeat this conspiracy of abject surrender and defeat being scripted by the opportunist nexus of AISA-SFI-AISF-Y4E-ABVP-NSUI and support DSU in holding the elections for the JSC according to JNUSU constitution. It is the responsibility of every progressive minded student of this campus to carry forward the uncompromising battle against the reactionary anti-student Lyngdoh Committee Recommendations. History will remember these renegade spent forces of SFI/AISA as liars and traitors and they will not be forgiven.  

Resist the politics of compromise & abject surrender to Lyngdoh! Demand immediate postponement of UGBM to ensure more informed debate!


In an all-organisation meeting held yesterday to decide upon the date of the UGBM, AISA-SFI proposed it to be held on 9th January. Earlier they intended it to be held as early as the 6th of January, an absurd proposition that DSU has consistently opposed considering many students would not even be in the campus by then. Now, they have postponed the date by a mere 3 days, and that too not to ensure a more informed debate, but rather at the behest of their sangh coalition partner ABVP’s for national convention! All the bootlickers of Lyngdoh however, opposed any demand to postpone the UGBM to the second half of this month proposed by DSU and some other organizations. And today the administration has officially extended the last date of registration till 9th January, while AISA-SFI have already collected a requisition for the UGBM for the very same day!

The hurry and scramble on the part of the pro-Lyngdoh alliance to officially bring in Lyngdoh to the campus is nothing new. In their urge to surrender, they have already accepted Lyngdoh in practice by scuttling debates in school GBMs and UGBMs, undermining all democratic norms of functioning, fleeing from UGBMs, holding secret meetings with the most ardent champion of Lyngdoh - YFE and most of all lying repeatedly to the students. The current Supreme Court verdict, which denied even the spurious relaxations claimed by these renegade forces, came during the winter break. A large section of students, whom they shamelessly lied to in the previous semester about the relaxations supposedly guaranteed to them by the Amicus Curie are not even aware of the implications of this new development. Not even left with what they claimed was a ‘relaxed’ Lyngdoh, they now want to dispose of the matter in a UGBM as soon as possible without any informed debate.

Threatened by the anti-Lyngdoh mood of the students, they had earlier fled from a UGBM. Now, readying themselves for a complete surrender to Lyngdoh, they once again want as few students to witness it. While the leader of the pro-Lyngdoh bandwagon SFI has been the most trusted ambassador of Mr. Lyngdoh in campus;  the most spineless of the motley pro-privatisation gang of liars, AISA had even gone to the extent of pointing out advantages of Lyngdoh (becoming the second organization to do so after YFE) under the veneer of ‘informed debate’. Now, when pushing for a move that will change the very fabric of the university, it wants as little deliberation as possible on the consequences of such a move.

The decision of either accepting the Supreme Court verdict, or exploring other modes of ensuring a students representative body without compromising our struggle against Lyngdoh is extremely crucial to the future of campus politics. And as such, any move to curb debates on the issue by these renegade forces needs to be opposed. In the fight against Lyngdoh and privatization they have already chosen their side. When the administration has already hiked the establishment charges and has pointed out that it will do it in the future as well, these cronies of Lyngdoh have instead of intensifying the current mobilization against fee hike, are preparing themselves to officially welcome Lyngdoh – instituted to bring in more privatization. Our campus which is known for its progressive legacy of democratic functioning and debate enshrined in the JNUSU constitution today stands at its brink. DSU appeals to the student community to intensify the struggle against Lyngdoh. We should also demand immediate postponement of the UGBM to the second half of January so that there is more deliberation on the consequences of any attempt by these stooges of Lyngdoh to accept the reactionary Lyngdoh Committee Recommendations. 

The fight against privatization is inseparable from the fight against Lyngdoh! Defeat the cronies of Lyngdoh and neo-liberalism!!


Amidst all their cacophony, the pro-Lyngdoh alliance of AISA-SFI-AISF-ABVP-NSUI have, since the last semester, repeatedly tried obscuring the real agenda behind the Lyngdoh Committee Recommendations (LCR). Knowing completely well the anti-Lyngdoh stance of the students, they have avoided questions from the students, even fleeing from a UGBM and scuttling school GBMs. What they have instead tried in vain is to restrict the debate within a false binary of ‘for or against elections’ when the real polarization is pro or anti-Lyngdoh. Now once again, when even their farce of negotiations stands exposed, they declared unilaterally that the UGBM will be conducted on 6th January, even before the registration for the new semester gets over, knowing that many students will not even be in the campus at that time and won’t even be informed about the debate. The need of the hour is to intensify our struggle against LCR. Not surprisingly, these neo-liberal stooges are bent upon implementing LCR to bring in a puppet union, thereby facilitating the administration’s drive towards privatization of education and introducing ‘user charges’.

It is not a coincidence that LCR was instituted after the Birla-Ambani report indentified students unions as the major impediment towards privatization of higher education. To convert students unions into puppet unions, a series of draconian measures were imposed. The students of JNU were aware of this nefarious game plan of the ruling classes and rejected any proposal in favour of LCR. Now, when after much shadowboxing the entire bunch of opportunists, from the revisionists to the communal-fascists have ganged up to pave the way for Lyngdoh, the administration has hiked establishment charges by a whopping 210 rupees. It has been emboldened by the surrender of these renegades to the larger agenda of Lyngdoh which is intrinsically connected with privatization of education.

In the absence of an elected union, JNU administration had in the past also tried imposing a series of anti-students measures, even going to the extent of banning an organization. However every time it was forced to step back in the face of the united struggle of the students. It is this very uncompromising struggle that disturbs the ones in the higher echelons of power, and also their local agents – AISA/SFI/AISF/ABVP/NSUI. And it is precisely the space for uncompromising struggle of students which Lyngdoh wants to curtail. Knowing this very well, along with these renegades, the JNU administration was the happiest after the Supreme Court judgment on 8th December. However, despite and in the face of all these, struggle remains our most potent weapons against these forces of privatization.   

The student community has witnessed during the past few months how this grand pro-Lyngdoh reactionary alliance has done everything possible to embroil the students into a sham fight. What we have also seen is a simultaneous ugly display on their part of trying to restrain the students from gearing up for a real battle against Lyngdoh. However, to expect otherwise from these sold-out degenerate forces is to expect too much! These are the very same organizations who have accepted Lyngdoh everywhere and the non-imposition of Lyngdoh in JNU had become an eyesore for them. We should also not remain in any illusion about the pro-privatization character of these organizations. And thus, the struggle against Lyngdoh and privatization is simultaneously also a struggle against these local agents of the ruling classes. The fight against Lyngdoh is however far from over. DSU appeals to the students to reject Lyngdoh in toto and stand by the proposal of holding elections to the Joint Struggle Committee to ensure a representative body to lead the struggles of the students while also carrying forward the struggle against Lyngdoh and the forces of privatization.   

Insensitivity, Deceit & Denial! An arrogant administration justifies Fee Hike & brands the students as “liars”!


 “Students must pay the increased charges this time and let me tell you clearly - there will soon be further hikes in the coming days.”  - Prof. Nafey (Dean of Students)

In an arrogant display of insensitivity towards the students, the administration yesterday said that there would be no roll back on the increased establishment charges. In complete compliance to the neoliberal agenda of forcing students to pay for their facilities, the Dean of Students and the Rector defended the whopping 140% fee hike. The administration blatantly justified the hiked charges to pay for the increased salary of the mess managers. Simultaneously the Dean of Students added that the establishment charges would soon be further increased along with the enhanced minimum wages in the days to come. The administration also stubbornly refused to undertake any measure to alleviate the plight of the students who have been deprived of their scholarships for months together and are now faced with this sharp hike. Alongside, it also shamelessly denied the fact that the hostel presidents had staged a walkout in the last IHA meeting expressing their disagreement with the proposed hike. Borrowing the words of Mr. Lyngdoh, the Dean accused the student representatives of “unnecessarily politicizing” the issue. Further, he denied all the accusations being made regarding the highhandedness of the Shipra warden and without any clarification out rightly branded the student representatives as “liars” who had “misrepresented facts”. The administration did not even discuss the other pressing demands of the students concerning hostel allotment primarily of those in the OBC list.

The deceitfulness of the administration was most evident when the Dean insistently harped upon a 1983 “agreement” that supposedly decided in favour of payment of the mess managers’ salary from the hostel-residents. When the student representatives demanded the copy of the “agreement”, most nefariously he denied any knowledge regarding its whereabouts. His continual reluctance to divulge any information regarding the details or nature of such an “agreement” or even the parties involved makes this claim most suspect. But it must be emphasized that whatever may be the exact nature or details of it, there is nothing sacrosanct about an “agreement” made 30 years back that would make it applicable for eternity. Any agreement that supposedly shifts the burden of the salary of the mess manager from the administration’s shoulder onto the students must be revisited and challenged, more so in today’s context.

The payment of the minimum wages of the employees of the university is solely the responsibility of the administration. And alongside, it is the right of each student to have access to higher education in a government university at nominal charges or free of cost. The logic of “lack of funds” that has been projected every time to justify fee hikes is nothing but the agenda of the state to withdraw from its responsibility of providing subsidized education. DSU had pointed out that the issue is not primarily one of ‘accountability’ and ‘transparency’, as the revisionists had tried to project it. The Dean also had no problems with their demands and agreed to produce the exact break-up of the hostel audited accounts of the collected establishment charges. We rather need to challenge the neo-liberal agenda of turning universities into self-generating privatized enterprises where students will buy education as commodity. However, when nothing but empty rhetoric can be expected from the revisionists who hypocritically claim to fight privatization while surrendering to Lyngdoh, it is the responsibility of the students to build an uncompromising struggle to resist fee hikes, commercialization and its most potent weapon – Lyngdoh. 

The chronicle of a compromise foretold! Defeat the conspiracy of abject defeat & surrender to Lyngdoh!!


The 2008 stay order on JNUSU elections with regard to ‘violation’ of the draconian Lyngdoh Committee Recommendations (LCR) marked the desperate attempt of the ruling class and the state to ring the death knell for any assertive militant students’ movement in campus. It came as an attempt to depoliticize the students’ union elections with the hope to erase our painstakingly built history of a vibrant democratic culture. It came to render the students’ union into a toothless pliant body that would remain at the mercy of a vastly emboldened administration with sweeping powers. This effort of the ruling class of course was in compliance with the Birla Ambani Report that had (rightly) identified students’ politics as the single largest obstacle to the forces of LPG, the merit-market and privatization of higher education. But alongside, the 2008 stay order was also marked by the unprecedented unanimity of an entire student community which in a historic UGBM sent an open challenge that echoed in the corridors of power. Thousands of students took to streets, underwent detention and participated in massive demonstrations. The message was loud and clear: Lyngdoh must be rejected in toto. And it is this uncompromising politico-legal battle that successfully challenged the LCR and deemed its interference with students’ union election unwarranted.  A Bench of Justices Markandey Katju and AK Ganguly said, “We don’t agree with the appointment of the Lyngdoh Committee. Can the court do anything it likes? There are certain principles of exercise of writ jurisdiction. We don’t feel in everything the SC should interfere.” Castigating the apex bench headed by then Justice Arijit Pasayat for interfering with the student body elections, Justice Katju said, “No writ lies against a private body except the writ of habeas corpus. A student union is not a statutory body….how does writ petition lie in connection with its election?” This didn’t merely call into question the stay order on JNUSU elections, but also challenged the very constitutional validity of LCR. And as such it was an immense achievement of our struggle, us being still the only case against Lyngdoh being heard in the country and being referred to the constitutional bench.
But from hereafter, instead of building on the gains, the revisionists started showing their real colours and began the long saga of what they do best – compromise. Instead of pitching the battle against Lyngdoh at a higher level so as to carry on a nation-wide uncompromising struggle, the revisionists – AISA/SFI/AISF – were characteristically terrified to see an opportunity for a militant movement. This gang of stooges and bootlickers, who had already accepted Lyngdoh elsewhere, were obviously in the hunt for an alibi to find an exit route in the face of a genuine and militant students’ struggle. And hence the motley alliance of convenience amongst the revisionist ‘left’ and the reactionary right that we see today.
The long labyrinth of compromises and the impressive display of trickery, gimmicks and ill-propaganda that has been weaved ever since by these lackeys has had several twists and turns. All of course to one end – find a convenient compromise formula, betray the students and open the gates for Lyngdoh at any cost. The possibility of defying the court order was opposed through a fine display of fear-mongering thereby creating a frenzy and hysteria of ‘sine-die’. Then came the ‘negotiations’ with our direct adversary the Amicus Curie to extract certain ‘relaxations’. Instead of upholding the non-negotiability of our constitution and politicizing the students regarding the very anti-student idea behind the LCR in its entirety, the drama of certain ‘benchmarks’ was created. And in the process a whole year was lost in these ‘negotiations’ that finally failed in July 2011. Hence unfolded an even more naked advocacy of Lyngdoh. Perceiving the die-hard anti-Lyngdoh spirit among the students they ran from the floor of an UGBM to resume the failed negotiations and in their undaunted urge to compromise accepted each and every draconian clause of LCR with certain bogus ‘relaxations’ that were inadequate even for a feeble attempt at face-saving. With even the so called ‘benchmarks’ being shamelessly cast away, they began their naked dance of celebrating the sham of their ‘glorious fight for relaxations’. Today, after all these trickery, even these so called ‘relaxations’ have been rejected by the Supreme Court in its judgment on 8th December. With the one farce of a relaxation on age-limit (two years for only research scholars) and photocopy (granted with conditions), the rest of the LCR comprising the most dangerous Grievance Redressal Cell remains intact. And of course our revisionist friends with their grand rainbow coalition of opportunism are not only still ready to accept it, but also consider this blatant sell out as a ‘great victory’.
Involved in their various stages of posturing, shadow-boxing, camouflaging and underhand dealings with the Y4E and administration, they naturally wished to scuttle what they feared most – debates, discussions, arguments, questions. During the execution of this entire grand compromise formulae, faced as they were with an overwhelming anti-Lyngdoh sentiment amongst the student community, the bootlickers themselves took up the mantle of depoliticization. Things needed to be shrouded in rampant misinformation campaigns, withholding of facts and of course haste. Hence the unabashed scuttling of debates and the unprecedented haste in which the school GBMs were wrapped up last semester. And today while they are at their naked best, it is therefore no surprise that they wish the least audience while they intend to celebrate their abject surrender to and brazen compromise with the forces of Lyngdoh. Therefore the hurriedly called UGBM scheduled on the 6th of January - when even the registration for the new semester will not be over;- when  the students who had gone home last semester before the judgment came, won’t even be aware of the issue.  
Rather than conducting elections as per LCR, we must hold elections to the JSC as an interim measure and intensify our struggle against Lyngdoh. DSU calls upon the entire student community to once again rise up to the need of the hour and stand guard against these agents of Lyngdoh and put an end to this chronicle of compromise being written by them. Four years back it was the historic responsibility of the students to close the doors to Lyngdoh in this campus which they did by rejecting it in toto. Today, we must stall this hurried conspiracy of surrender and defeat, demand an immediate postponement of the UGBM for a more informed debate and finally carry forward our struggle against LCR that is sin-qua-non with our larger fight against the forces of privatization that thwarts the very fabric our hard-earned political existence.      



December 18, 2011

Of acquittals, arrests and continued minority withchunting!


The so-called ‘war on terror’ declared by the US imperialists has completed more than ten years. The war propelled by the US desire for the gas, oil and natural reserve resources has also been fueled by a consistent Islamophobic campaign. Xenophobia, racism and attacks on Muslims reached a new limit in the wake of the WTC attacks. In a continuation with the ‘war on terror’ declared by George Bush, the Indian state, a loyal lapdog of US imperialism, imposed a ban on the Muslim organization- Students Islamic Movement of India(SIMI) on 19th September 2001. Without even a shred of evidence, hundreds of its activists were arrested from all across the country over the next few days. When in August 2008, Delhi High Court judge Geeta Mittal rejected the Centre’s ban on SIMI citing this very lack of evidence; it took less than 24 hours for the Indian state to impose a stay on the judgment. Harassment and arrests of its members are a routine affair after every bomb blast and many still continue to languish in prison. Fictitious organizations, like Indian Mujahideen (IM), supposedly linked to SIMI have been propped up. All of this while SIMI has been fighting a continuous legal battle against the unjust ban.

“Till date, not a single allegation against SIMI has been proved while the planned attacks of the Sangh Parivar against Christians, Dalits and Muslims have been exposed by various inquiry commissions.” said Shahid Badr Falahi, the last president of SIMI before it was banned. Year after year, despite direct evidences linking the Hindu fascist organizations like RSS, Abhinav Bharat, VHP to bomb blasts across the country, the brunt has been directly faced by the Muslim community. The police, the courts, the army and also the corporate media all work in tandem to prove how ‘global Islamic networks’ are ‘breeding’ and striking the Indian (read Hindu) masses. Young boys have been arrested, detained, tortured, and even eliminated (as it happened in the Batla House fake encounter two years back) as the sleuths of the intelligence claim their success at busting new terror ‘modules’ every few days.

Three years after they were falsely implicated in the Jaipur bomb blast, a fast track sessions court in Jaipur on 9th December acquitted 11 of the 14 people. The judge noted how the prosecution was not able to produce even a trace of evidence to prove its claims that, inspired by ‘terror camps’ in the Kota region, these men were building terror networks across the country. In a press conference after their release, they recounted the ordeal and torture they underwent at the hands of the police, local goons and the jail authorities. Showing notwithstanding the party in power, the colour of the Indian state remains saffron, they pointed out how the regime change in Rajasthan from that of the BJP to now the Congress changed nothing as far their harassment was concerned.

The Batla House fake encounter, in which two young innocent boys were murdered in cold blood by the Delhi police, despite all their machinations to prove that it was a ‘genuine’ encounter, has continued to haunt the Indian ruling classes. To fill in the missing threads of their fabricated story, it thus keeps recurring in a number of cases. The people acquitted in the Jaipur blast also pointed out how Chidambaram’s assertion that the Jaipur bomb blast was linked with the ‘encounter’ at Batla House, emboldened the jail staff in torturing them. Thus the day after Chidamabaram’s visit, when they sought permission to offer prayers on Eid, they were dragged out of their cells and beaten for hours. The remaining three of the fourteen who are still in prison, have not been acquitted for their supposed involvement in the 2008 Ahmadabad blast. This is another ploy of the state to keep these young Muslims always under trial. Imposition of other false cases keeps them in prison even if acquitted in one case. It moreover gives the police longer durations of police custody, giving them thus more time to torture. Hundreds of SIMI activists have recounted how they were forced to ‘confess’ under unbearable torture.
Even after being conclusively proved that several bomb blasts have been the handiwork of the Hindu fascist forces, the police forces have only arrested young Muslim boys on trumped up charges. Just a few days before the acquittal of these eleven people, on 30th November, the police arrested six men from Delhi, Chennai and parts of Bihar. Five days later, on 5th December, they arrested another person from the Purnea district of Bihar, calling him ‘another IM operative’. All these men have now been implicated in the blasts at Chimanaswamy Stadium at Bangalore, in Pune in February 2010 and at Jama Masjid in September 2010. The Batla House fake encounter features again in the attempt of the state to justify these arrests. As per their Gobbelsian propaganda, the Jama Masjid attack was ostensibly carried out on the second anniversary of the Batla House ‘encounter’ to ‘avenge’ the killing of their ‘commander’ Atif Amin!  The Delhi police has also released a list of ‘absconding’ IM operatives, to pave the ground for future witch-hunting.  

In a déjà vu of what follows after every such arrest, the corporate media is playing its own role of fuelling up the ‘collective conscience’ of the people; something along with ‘faith’ that the courts in India have come to rely more on! Parroting police claims and reproducing, in direct infringement of Supreme Court guidelines, their ‘confessions’ made in police custody, these media houses in a shameless manner are faithfully propagating false stories. Thus for one, this is merely one of the five modules and many ‘sleeper cells’ operating in the country to ‘wreck havoc in Indian metros’(Hindustan Times, 6/12/11). Another, with an eye towards the ‘Hindu majoritarian sentiment’ claims that these men had planned to blow up the Dagdusheth Halwai temple in Pune. (NDTV, 5/12/11). For another, these men had plans to eliminate Narendra Modi. (Rediff, 14/12/11).. According to the absurd claims of another report, IM carried out blasts in Chimnaswamy Stadium because no Pakistan players were selected for IPL! (DNA, 7/12/11)

As these men were remanded to a further ten day police remand on 5th December, the testimonies of their family members have pointed out how the police, in violation of all norms of arrest, illegally picked them from different places. Dr. Nasrul Jamal, father of Ghayur Jamali arrested from Madhubani pointed out how the local police landed at his place and arrested his son on a fabricated case of fake passport. Ghayur, who has never even applied for a passport was taken to Delhi from his hometown on this charge and then falsely implicated in ‘terror charges’. In fact, the Dharbhanga zone DIG and the Bihar Home Secretary still maintain that the case against him is of a fake passport and nothing to do with ‘terrorism’. Relatives of Gauhar Aziz Khomany, also pointed out how even weeks after the arrest, no official information about the arrest has been made, and the family’s only source of information about the arrest remains the media. However, this remains the standard practice in arresting members of the Muslim community.

The list of persecuted Muslims is endless. The Hindu fascist Indian state, even when it has been forced to accept that Muslims were falsely implicated as in Malegaon, Mecca Masjid and now Jaipur, would never punish the policemen responsible for their unjust incarceration and ordeal. On the contrary, they give them more impunity to further arrest, harass, torture and even kill people from minority groups. Muslims in India, along with the dalits and adivasis remain one of the most oppressed communities. Most of them have been systematically deprived for the last more than 60 years of basic means of livelihood and dignity. Their small shops and businesses remain one of the targets of the state. For all ruling class parties, Muslims in India should play the role of compliant vote-banks. When they refuse to play that role, they are quickly branded as ‘terrorists’, liable to be tortured, detained and even eliminated. This state, hindu brahmanical to its core, can not expected to act otherwise. It is only the unity of the revolutionary movement with the dalits, adivasis and all oppressed masses, for the overhaul of this fascist that will emancipate all exploited sections of the society for a society free of all forms of discrimination and oppression.
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