A student of University of Hyderabad counters the administration’s press release point by point –
1. UoH Administration cuts off water, electricity and internet facility”
We in South campus had not received water from 22nd afternoon. On 23rd morning, we tried to engage the pump behind our hostel; a plumber who spotted this contacted the sub-station, and got the power line to the pump switched off. 3 hours later, he told us that his “engineer had ordered to shut off water and power”. He did later turn on the motor, and we did get water, by 23rd afternoon. But only with threats of turning off water supply after that once.
The internet was very visibly down from 22nd afternoon, till today morning. And it’s weird that the admin contradicts itself. In the title, it avers that it never cut off water, power or internet. Then, in the body it says “The internet facilities have been restored on the campus”. If it wasn’t cut off, how do you restore? Caught in the act.
The registrar in-charge has also been quoted by several students on social media as having said something to the tune of “cut off their water and power, then we will see how they protest”. Of course, I cannot vouch to the authenticity of this, and of course, the registrar will deny the charge.
“2. UoH does not offer mess facility”
It is sufficiently clear from the “agendas” distributed to various people before the VC’s arrival that he was making moves to secure the support of the non-teaching staff. One only wonders what he offered, to make them swing around from “one of our children has died!” to “these useless students are spoiling the reputation of the university”. Needless to say, as any number of the non-teaching staff will attest, and have been confiding in us, it is not really all of them, just some their netas who called the strike. And given the kind of oppression they face at the hands of the admin, and their union being their only saviour, what can they do but obey their netas.
If the University did not shut down the messes, as it says, then one wonders why they didn’t try to make some sort of alternate arrangement seeing that the workers are on strike. Why didn’t the wardens come to the hostels and try to work out something?
“4. Climate of terror at the Varsity”
How on earth is it misleading? Have you seen the police in riot gear yesterday, flexing their weapons and surrounding shop com yesterday? Have you seen the police roughing up Uday Kumar for cooking near Shop Com? Have you seen the students huddled together in fear? Have you seen the tensions apparent on the student’s faces all through the last two days?
I request your help in countering the lies the university admin is trying to spread, to dissipate the current protests. If you have direct experience or evidence countering any of these points, please do reply here.
I used to love this university. I wasn’t partisan to any party, and in spite of my political leanings, used to try to look at things from different points of view, favouring nuances against generalisations. Now, with your lies and the behaviour of the past two days, I’m tired of this place. I took pride in this university, its people, its environment. I sometimes (foolishly) dreamed that if I ever got a job here as a teacher, it would make me so proud to come back and serve my alma mater (promptly followed by an imposter complex that I would never be good enough to teach here). But now, I hate this place. I never ever want to come back here. Even if it’s a choice between a job teaching the subject I love and selling tea.
A lot of teachers here have lost my respect and admiration. Your PhDs, books, and published papers do not for sensitivity make. It might be worth your while to sit down and reflect on what meaning your life has had, what your life has done for the world at large, other than satisfying your academic egos.
In my four years here, in my little almost insignificant ways, I have tried to do things to make this campus a better place. I now bitterly consider that time wasted.
Yes, this is a rant; but this is also the voice of a disillusioned student who will never champion the cause of this university again, or defend it against detractors, who will not proudly declare his alma mater, but will rather shamefully try to hide it in a city name (“I did my — and — from Hyderabad”). You have lost a staunch supporter, and there are hundreds like me. We whisper amongst ourselves, and with revulsion share how we just want to finish our theses and get out of this place. This is no longer dissent – this is giving up.