food for thought

SVNIT Protest against Sexual harassment – Justice delayed is Justice denied

So, here’s my question  – How do we begin again?

When it’s already been more than a year, when most of us have already left, when we are so busy with our lives; building careers, counting cubicles, calling clients, making chapattis, paying rents, working on projects, doing assignments, working with professors and hardly even getting time to breathe! – How do we begin again?

But then we need to. We must because though it’s true that we have left, that we all have graduated, that we have a life ahead to lead and we are all busy but we have left some mess behind – a cardinal task to complete and if we don’t remind you of that, we fear you might forget it.

So, this is where I enter. Hello. Last time I was here, we were sitting in front of the administration building protesting, trying to break a brutally unjust cycle of repeated suppression and abusive misuse of power, trying to bring some absolutely despicable chain of incidents to everybody’s notice, trying to open those eyes which were since long wide shut, trying to speak through the torturous silence and a long tale of ignorance.  We stood for what’s right and yet we were asked to shut up. We chose to struggle anyway. We thought we were creating ripples; we thought that we were onto something but then we couldn’t have been more wrong. Though our actions spoke louder than words, we forgot that the people we were speaking to were stone deaf.

And unfortunately, now, we are back to square one.

So, how do we begin again?

Because this post is not going to get us to the past. This post is not going to give us the year back. We are no longer there to tell you why we ever needed this. But then, don’t you remember?  Don’t you remember how we fought? How we shouted back for our rights? How we stepped ahead and told what we can’t tolerate, what we don’t want around us, what is clearly clearly wrong and how they shouldn’t get away with it, how we showed that we are not weak, how we showed that our principles are stronger than their so called power, how we did all that just being a student and being aware of what’s not right? Don’t you remember? Matter seemed trivial to many because what were we protesting against? A professor touching a student? A professor abusing verbally, mentally, emotionally, financially and still being called a professor, still being allowed to teach? Surely, we could have misunderstood, right? But we are not that stupid. Those words above are not capable of describing the sheer agony. I am just diluting heavily here. It is not trivial. How can it be! It is far from it! We are aware of our rights. We are serious and we know what we are talking about.

So, what’s exactly happening?

Well, our director resigned (or retired?) – You might already know that. Our registrar didn’t (but he is out on a long vacation. Hope you are having fun sir.)  The FIR that we filed is more or less redundant now. It’s been suppressed and it’s been made to be forgotten. After the FIR was filed, we were given hearing dates not once but TWICE. Ideally, someone from the administration should have gone on behalf of the institute but guess what happened? No one did. Apparently, no one was aware of the dates. Between the choice of protecting students and protecting the accused, they chose the latter. We are not surprised. If people were supportive, there would have been no protests at all. It’s no wonder that the FIR is just a flying story now. What could even the judge do, if nobody just turned up! Stupidly clever, wasn’t it?

So, now what’s our next step?

Fresh investigation is being carried out by ICC. Letters have been written by the accused where idiotic and absolutely illogical justifications have been made for their deed. We have been called liars. Our story has been called fictional.

Well, okay.  If our story was fake I wouldn’t be writing this. If our story was fake I wouldn’t be taking so much trouble. We didn’t protest for nothing! We didn’t decide to go through that entire ordeal for nothing! And even though we are not there sitting in front of administrative building anymore, the wounds are still fresh in our hearts. Why are we agreeing to give our statements again and again? Come on, we do have a life beyond this, don’t we? We wouldn’t do all this for a bunch of lies!

Well, anyway, dear sir, we are not against your idiotic methodology of defense. We are just against what you are trying to defend which you can’t really because it’s too horribly black to paint it all white.

So, this is how we begin again, we strike back with greater force. We stand united and we stand undeterred. We are here even after we have left. And we are not going to leave so easily.

We haven’t forgotten and we won’t let you forget it.

We won’t allow all this to be lost in the disarray of days. We won’t allow the candle to be smothered, our struggles to be lost so easily. What was done was wrong and it shouldn’t have happened. People who did this must NOT be allowed to walk freely. They were wrong and they should know that they were wrong. There’s better word for their deeds – Crime. If time is what this whole process demands, we can be patient, but what about ignorance? What about our untrustworthy memory?

We have a history that we can’t forget. We have a history that is protecting our future. We must remember that.

So, don’t move on.

What we fought for must remain alive in our hearts, why we fought for it must be passed on.

So, don’t move on.

Keep shouting. Keep reciting. We were heard and the echoes must keep on ringing. The echoes must keep on ringing until we get what we deserve, until they get what they deserve!

Don’t move on!

Somebody finally spoke up against something that was simply not being acknowledged at all! Everybody turned a blind eye towards it! Everybody tolerated it even after knowing that it was absolutely unfair. And then we spoke. This shouldn’t be taken for granted.

Don’t move on!

Our reasons should be known to everyone. Our motive should forever ricochet through the walls of our institute so that no one, no one, ever dares to come back or do what’s not tolerated here. We don’t condone the wrong. If someone dares to do it, we will make him/her pay for it.

So, don’t move on!

Don’t forget! We must remember our history! We must remember who we are!

Though they will try to suppress us but we must not lose hope. We want justice. And there’s no other way around it. We want justice and we will keep demanding it until we get it.

So, don’t. Don’t you dare move on.

Regards,
Batch of 2015

For those who are not aware of what exactly happened last year. Click on the link below: http://wp.me/p3N4X0-o2

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