Resolving Binaries: Remembering ONV Kurup (1931-2016)

Resolving Binaries: Remembering ONV Kurup (1931-2016)

ONV Kurup (Sourced from Wikimedia) K. Satchidanandan Kesari Balkrishna Pillai, one of Kerala’s foremost critical thinkers had once observed that Malayalees enjoy poetry primarily through their ears. The late ONV Kurup’s popularity depended partly on the auditory appeal and easy accessibility of his lyrics, and partly on his consistent engagement with social issues. He was…

‘Nationalism is a great menace’

‘Nationalism is a great menace’

Rabindranath Tagore India has never had a real sense of nationalism. Even though from childhood I had been taught that the idolatry of Nation is almost better than reverence for God and humanity, I believe I have outgrown that teaching, and it is my conviction that my countrymen will gain truly their India by fighting…

Statement from Concerned Faculty at the English and Foreign Languages University on the Police Crackdown at HCU

Statement from Concerned Faculty at the English and Foreign Languages University on the Police Crackdown at HCU

Rembrandt van Rijn / Art Details We, concerned faculty from the English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad, strongly condemn the police brutality at the University of Hyderabad on 22nd March 2016, after the return of Prof. Appa Rao Podile, the Vice-Chancellor accused of abetting the suicide of the Dalit Research Scholar Rohith Vemula. As an…

Caste systems violate human rights and dignity of millions worldwide: U.N. report

Caste systems violate human rights and dignity of millions worldwide: U.N. report

Syed Haider Raza / ArtKonsult Click here for a pdf of the full report. At least 250 million people worldwide still face appalling and dehumanising discrimination based on caste and similar systems of inherited status warned the United Nations Special Rapporteur on minority issues, Rita Izsák-Ndiaye, during the presentation of the first comprehensive UN report…

International Statement of Solidarity with the University of Hyderabad by academics, activists, artists and writers

International Statement of Solidarity with the University of Hyderabad by academics, activists, artists and writers

Ram Kumar / ArtKonsult We, academicians, activists,  artists and writers, condemn the ongoing brutal attacks on and unlawful detention of peacefully protesting faculty and students at the University of Hyderabad by the University administration and the police. We also condemn the restriction of access to basic necessities such as water and food on campus. The…

A Fig Leaf Called ‘Vandalism’

A Fig Leaf Called ‘Vandalism’

Statement by the SC and ST Faculty Forum and Concerned Teachers of the University of Hyderabad Egon Schiele, 'Bare Tree Behind a Fence' / WikiArt For the past three days the news media has been widely circulating stories about ‘vandalism’ by students of the University of Hyderabad that led to the police crackdown. Surprisingly little…

Interim Report of the Independent National Fact-Finding Team into the Violence on March 22 at Hyderabad Central University

Interim Report of the Independent National Fact-Finding Team into the Violence on March 22 at Hyderabad Central University

Members of the Fact-Finding (FF) Team: Henri Tiphagne, Human Rights Defenders Alert–India Tara Rao, Amnesty International Burnard Fatima, International Movement against all forms of Discrimination and Racism Kuffir Nalgundwar, Round Table India Kiruba Munusamy, Supreme Court Lawyer Beena Pallical, National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights Ramesh Nathan, National Dalit Movement for Justice Asha Kowtal, All…

Writing the Age

Writing the Age

Nayantara Sahgal © Anselm Kiefer, 'Morgenthau Plan' / Royal Academy of Arts The title for my talk — “Writing the Age” — was suggested to me and I thought it was appropriate because my writing seems to have been about the making of modern India. This was not a decision I made. As you know,…

‘Hyderabad: Students and Faculty Arrested for Protests Must Be Released’

‘Hyderabad: Students and Faculty Arrested for Protests Must Be Released’

Amnesty International Image via JAC-UoH Press release, March 25, 2016. Amnesty International India condemns the police crackdown on peacefully protesting University of Hyderabad (UoH) students and faculty and demands their immediate release. There should be an independent investigation into allegations of excessive use of force by the police. On 22 March, the Telangana police assaulted…

The Art of Living with a River

The Art of Living with a River

Salil Chaturvedi Image via India Water Portal Eight I was, when I met her first, And she? I imagined an eight thousand years! A summer dawn and my very first river Calm and deep—an eternal giver Around a fort and by a hill Flowed she, gently, almost still. The adults haggle and strike a price…

Letter to Young Political Workers

Letter to Young Political Workers

Jackson Pollock, Mural / University of Iowa Museum of Art   February 2, 1931 To The Young Political Workers. Dear Comrades: Our movement is passing through a very important phase at present. After a year's fierce struggle some definite proposals regarding the constitutional reforms have been formulated by the Round Table Conference and the Congress…

Periyar and Ambedkar on Bhagat Singh

Periyar and Ambedkar on Bhagat Singh

Bhagat Singh was hanged to death on March 23,  1931, in Lahore.  We reproduce here two articles, “Bhagat Singh” by Periyar E.V. Ramasamy, first published on March 29 that year, and “Three Victims”, an editorial by B.R. Ambedkar published on April 13, 1931. Jackson Pollock / MoMA Bhagat Singh Periyar E.V. Ramasamy Editorial in Periyar’s…

I Speak in Colour

I Speak in Colour

Shrenik Mutha Image: Jacob Lawrence, ‘Brownstones’ / Whitney Museum I study at a law college. Last term, I faced harassment and ragging by a classmate. The ragging was based on questions and issues around my body and sexuality. The issue was taken up after a formal complaint was filed.  However, due to ‘procedural’ and ‘technical’…

Mourid Barghouti in conversation with Githa Hariharan

Mourid Barghouti in conversation with Githa Hariharan

The acclaimed Palestinian poet Mourid Barghouti was in Delhi recently for a series of events organised by the publishers Women Unlimited. Writer Githa Hariharan spoke to Mourid Barghouti on how literature, and poetry in particular, challenges authoritarian discourse around the world. Barghouti discusses the fine balance between the writer’s primary identity as an artist, and…

‘Those who won’t join in this madness…’

‘Those who won’t join in this madness…’

राजेश जोशी जो इस पागलपन में शामिल नहीं होंगे मारे जाएंगे कटघरे में खड़े कर दिए जाएंगे, जो विरोध में बोलेंगे जो सच-सच बोलेंगे, मारे जाएंगे बर्दाश्‍त नहीं किया जाएगा कि किसी की कमीज़ हो उनकी कमीज़ से ज्‍यादा सफ़ेद कमीज़ पर जिनके दाग़ नहीं होंगे, मारे जाएंगे धकेल दिए जाएंगे कला की दुनिया से…

Translating Rohith Vemula’s Poetry

Translating Rohith Vemula’s Poetry

  The Centre for Translations at St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University, organised a translation workshop on February 8, titled ‘Know in your Language, Communicate in your Voice: Translating the Works of Rohith Vemula’.  The invitation to the workshop read:   Rohith Vemula’s suicide note has rocked the political imagination of our republic, because it points…

A Lavni on Consent, and Other Stories

A Lavni on Consent, and Other Stories

Dancer Megha Ghadge, in a still from The Amorous Adventures. Courtesy Agents of Ishq.  “Truly, consent, it’s a delicate matter,” Megha says to her friend, in The Amorous Adventures of Shakku and Megha in the Valley of Consent. For this fun little film, director Paromita Vohra (of Khamosh Pani fame) uses the medium of lavni…

Caste, Religion and Lived Culture

Caste, Religion and Lived Culture

K. Satchidanandan © Ghulam Rasool Santosh, 'In the Snows of Kashmir'  (Image courtesy Saba Hasan) We are holding this discussion in the wake of a deeply disturbing sequence of events at the Hyderabad Central University.  It was spurred on by a right-wing anti-Dalit students’ organisation through baseless propaganda, and abetted by the University’s new Vice-Chancellor…

Make Dalit pain, struggle, exclusion part of education and public discourse: Vimal Thorat

Make Dalit pain, struggle, exclusion part of education and public discourse: Vimal Thorat

In this exclusive interview with Teesta Setalvad, Vimal Thorat speaks of her decades-long struggle to ensure that Dalit literature from seven Indian languages is made available to postgraduate students at the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU). Prof. Thorat is Convenor of the National Campaign for Dalit Human Rights (NCDHR) and former Professor of Hindi…

Speeches of Dissent, in Song

Speeches of Dissent, in Song

Kanhaiya Kumar and Umar Khalid (Sourced from Facebook) Kanhaiya Kumar and Umar Khalid made waves with the speeches they made at JNU in February, 2016, and were punished by the state for it, with sedition charges and detention. Music producers Dub Sharma and DJ-MojoJojo sampled their words of dissent against the Indian government into these…

Singing About the Dark Times

Singing About the Dark Times

Shubha Mudgal Sings Dushyant Kumar’s  “kahaan to tai thaa charaghaan har ek ghar ke liye” कहाँ तो तय था चिराग़ाँ हर एक घर के लिए – दुष्यंत कुमार कहाँ तो तय था चिराग़ाँ हर एक घर के लिए कहाँ चिराग़ मयस्सर नहीं शहर के लिए यहाँ दरख़तों के साये में धूप लगती है चलो यहाँ…

List of Signatories till 05 March 2016.

List of Signatories till 05 March 2016.

S No. First Name Last Name Designation Country Comment 1 Prabir Purkayastha Chairperson, Knowledge Commons India I support this petition. 2 Ranjith Raj Vasam Research Assistant & Teaching Assistant – IIIT Hyderabad India I support this petition. 3 Shashikumar J Publishing Professional and Researcher India I support this petition. 4 A Sunil Dharan Assistant Professor,…

The Indian Cultural Forum Salutes Our Students

The Indian Cultural Forum Salutes Our Students

​The Indian Cultural Forum congratulate​s​ K​anhaiya Kumar​ on his speech at JNU after his release on bail​. We are proud to stand in solidarity with him​,​ as also with the ​thousands of JNU students and faculty who have ​supported him, and with the ​thousands of students from universities across the country who have demonstrated their…

Lecture by Aijaz Ahmad: The Languages of a Union

Lecture by Aijaz Ahmad: The Languages of a Union

Aijaz Ahmad, noted academic and cultural critic, delivered the inaugural lecture for the Indian languages festival of the India Habitat Centre — ILF Samanvay 2015. Using the phrase “transnational matrix of the country”, he says that the Indian nation-state is conceived as a union of several autonomous linguistic nationalities. Hence the name we have given…