Saturday 5 March 2016

About JNU

Nowadays JNU is being praised all over India and even abroad as a great centre and epitome of free thinking and freedom of speech, particularly after the recent events there.

While I am a strong votary of free thinking and freedom of speech, I beg to differ from such admirers of JNU.. I have a poor opinion of JNU. Has a single creative and scientific idea come from that institution since its inception ? At least I have not heard so.

A University is different from a school or college, in that while schools and colleges only pass on to students the knowledge already existing, a University is a place where not only the existing knowledge is passed on to students, but also the frontier of knowledge is expanded, by research. For example, Universities in USA like Harvard, Berkeley and Stanford have often half a dozen Nobel Laureates each of whom have made scientific discoveries, and have thus expanded the frontier of knowledge. What genuine research is done in JNU ( or for that matter in most of our Universities ). Most of such 'research' is worthless or plagiarism.

Yes, many JNU students know how to shout slogans like 'azadi'' and 'halla bol', but to me these sound like a fashion. Kanhaiya and his associates talk of azadi from poverty, exploitation, etc. for the Indian people, but have they ever thought scientifically how this is to be achieved ? I am not doubting their courage and sincerity, but I regard them as totally superficial
I am against levying criminal charges against these students, as I have already mentioned in my earlier post, though I personally disapprove of such slogans.

Take for instance the slogan of azadi for Kashmir. That is a wrong slogan, and the correct slogan should be reunuificatiion of India and Pakistan ( and Bangladesh ) under a secular government, which while permitting freedom of religion does not tolerate religious extremism or bigotry, whether Hindu or Muslim.

Kashmir was independent only till 1587 when the last Kashmiri ruler Yusuf Shah Chak was deposed by the great Mughal Emperor Akbar who incorporated Kashmir into the Mughal Empire. Thereafter it continued as a province of the Mughal Empire for a long time ( see the accounts of the visits to Kashmir by the Mughal Emperors in Akbarnama, Jehangirnama and Shahjehannama ). After a spell of Sikh and Dogra rule ( who too were not Kashmiris ), Kashmir again became part of India under the British. So after 1587 Kashmir was never really independent, but was part of India.

Were the Mughal gardens like Shalimar, Nishat and Chashme- Shahi built by Kashmiris ? No, they were built by the Mughals, as their summer resorts. Kashmiri labourers may have been used for building them, but the idea and architects were Mughal. And the Mughals were Indians, not Kashmiris. No doubt the founder of the Mughal rule, Babur, was a foreigner, but from the time of Akbar onwards the Mughals were thoroughly Indianized. Their capital was Agra ( and later Delhi ) which are in India not Kashmir, and the Mughals regarded themselves as Indians, not foreigners.

Do people who demand azadi from India really understand its implications ? Today in almost every town in India there are shops of Kashmiris selling carpets, shawls and handicraft products. When I went to Kovalam beach near Trivandrum in Kerala I found many shops run by Kashmiris there. The same is the situation all over India. All these Kashmiri businessmen will be ruined if Kashmir becomes independent.

I am of course against atrocities on Kashmiris, whether Pandits or Muslims, but the solution is not azadi for Kashmir bur reunification of India and Pakistan, which will automatically solve the Kashmir problem No doubt that this will take a long time to achieve ( maybe 15-20 years ), but the demand must be raised now. Have JNU students ever thought of this ? It is all very easy to speak of azadi for Kashmir, but have the students ever thought the implications ?.No they have not. All most of them know is making emotional, flowery speeches and shouting slogans, as if these make them great revolutionaries

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