“Is the Left ready to receive a new Ambedkarite wound?”: Soumyabrata Choudhury

“Is the Left ready to receive a new Ambedkarite wound?”: Soumyabrata Choudhury

In this discussion on Soumyabrata Choudhury’s Ambedkar and Other Immortals: An Untouchable Research Programme, Souradeep Roy asks what kind of influence Choudhury’s time at the Jawaharlal Nehru University has had in the writing of the book. In this section, they also Choudhury also asks if the Left, which has had a very active and living…

23 March 2018: Black Friday

23 March 2018: Black Friday

  It was alarming and highly disturbing to see the manhandling and violence that was perpetrated by Delhi police on peacefully marching students on 24th March 2018.     Most mainstream media channels grossly underreported the number of students who attended the march. These students were not only from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) but also…

Delhi Streets See Sea of Students and Teachers Marching in Defence of Education

Delhi Streets See Sea of Students and Teachers Marching in Defence of Education

The People's March against the Government's policy onslaught on higher education and attack on reservation, saw an ocean of people descend on Parliament Street. Over 10000 teachers and students constituted the unprecedented gathering that marched with the DUTA banner through Barakhamba Road, Tolstoy Marg, Janpath and Jantar Mantar to finally culminate in a huge public…

JNU के छात्रों पर पुलिस ने कैसे किया अत्याचार सुनिए सुभाषिनी अली की ज़ुबानी

JNU के छात्रों पर पुलिस ने कैसे किया अत्याचार सुनिए सुभाषिनी अली की ज़ुबानी

२३ March को Delhi की सड़कों पर JNU के छात्रों के शांतिपूर्ण रैली पर पुलिस ने अटैक किया. छात्र – छात्राओं को मारा गया, उनके कपड़े फाड़े गए और उन्हें पुलिस की एक ट्रेनिंग फैसिलिटी में ले जाया गया – माकपा की पूर्व सांसद सुभाषिनी अली वहां मौजूद थी. तीस्ता सेतालवाद के साथ इस बातचीत…

Students of the Centre for English Studies, JNU, release a statement in support of their former chairperson, Udaya Kumar

Students of the Centre for English Studies, JNU, release a statement in support of their former chairperson, Udaya Kumar

The Indian Cultural Forum has been closely following the developments at the Centre for English Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University. We interviewed Dr Saitya Brata Das after he was denied his promotion to Professorship despite the support of the then Chairperson, Professor Udaya Kumar, and his adequate qualifications. Now, we learn that Dr Udaya Kumar, along…

Higher Education in India is at Risk

Higher Education in India is at Risk

Education has been an important concern since independence. Several policies and programmes have been introduced, meant to improve the existing scenario of education, by the Government of India. The University Grants Commission was established in 1948-49; the Secondary Education Commission in 1952-53; the Education Commission in 1964-66; and the National Education Commission on Teachers I…

Why Was Dalit JNU Professor Saitya Brata Das Denied Promotion by the VC?

Why Was Dalit JNU Professor Saitya Brata Das Denied Promotion by the VC?

Dr. Saitya Brata Das, Associate Professor of English at the Centre for English Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, was recently denied promotion to Professorship by the JNU Vice Chancellor Jagadesh Kumar Mamidala. Dr. Das has six books, three edited books of essays, and several published papers to his credit. He has also been teaching for over…

Roundtable with Romila Thapar

Roundtable with Romila Thapar

We spoke to historian Romila Thapar in an attempt to uncover the historical background of dissent and debate in India, and how today, this tradition is aggressively being erased. The space for dialogue and discussion is shrinking in an ideological environment that increasingly shuns the practice of fundamental rationality. Watch it here:

What the Nation Really Needs to Know: Extracts from JNU’s Nationalism Lectures

What the Nation Really Needs to Know: Extracts from JNU’s Nationalism Lectures

The massive outbreak of protests in February 2016, in the wake of sedition charges being filed against some students of the Jawaharlal Nehru University, took the form not only of sloganeering, human chains and streetplays, but also a lecture series on nationalism, attended by thousands of students, every day for almost a month. To mark the first anniversary of the attack, the…

“The Ambedkarite movement in India is about the power of articulation”

“The Ambedkarite movement in India is about the power of articulation”

Professor Y. S. Alone, along with four other teachers of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), has been served a legal notice from the administration. He has been persuaded to not address students at the Administrative Block in JNU. ICF's Anubha Rana recently interviewed Professor Alone on the possible ways of creating alternative politico-cultural spaces in academic institutions. Watch the video…

“BSP is the only alternative at the moment to defeat the forces of Hindutva in Uttar Pradesh”

“BSP is the only alternative at the moment to defeat the forces of Hindutva in Uttar Pradesh”

Bhanwar Meghwanshi is an incisive and forthright contemporary voice of the progressive Dalit movement in Rajasthan.  He has untiringly participated in campaigns and movements across the country, creating awareness on communalism, casteism, gender violence, globalisation, displacement and so on. Born on February 25, 1975 in village Siridiyas in Bhilwara district into a Dalit weaver family,…

“No Hindu Rashtra”: Nayantara Sahgal

“No Hindu Rashtra”: Nayantara Sahgal

The following statement from Nayantara Sahgal was read out at the programme "Hastakshep: Jantantrik Aur Sanskritik Bahulata Ke Paksh Mein" in Gandhi Bhavan, Lucknow, December 28, 2016: The dangers we face today come from the fact that this Government is destroying the meaning of India, and step by step, stealthily and openly, is converting our secular…

Missing Student

Missing Student

Missing Student A student missing  in the university  doesn't matter; the classes will continue,  and the student  missing  will rue many  a time that  the classes  were not missing, the university  grounded in dust   in New Delhi. There is campus  rumpus, a student is missing,  students protest –  where is he?  And the Vice Chancellor …

A Nation Filled with Anti-Nationals!

A Nation Filled with Anti-Nationals!

I thought the Muslims were the only anti-nationals in this country. But I was mistaken. Earlier, thousands of people including even women and children who were questioning the Koodankulam nuclear plant were declared as anti-nationals. They are not the only ones outside the community of Muslims, though. Over 11,000 NGOs in India are restricted from the…

Assaults on Reason and Institutions

Assaults on Reason and Institutions

Idea of India Conclave During the two years of the Narendra Modi government, there has been an all-round attack on various established institutions in the country, whether educational or cultural. There have been attempts to interfere with curricula, the way these institutions are run, as well as their mandate and autonomy. The Idea of India…

JNU and Its Tradition(s) of Dissent

JNU and Its Tradition(s) of Dissent

Café Dissensus, Issue 24 Photo courtesy Haneefa Muhammed, via Café Dissensus Linked below are the contents of an issue of Café Dissensus from 2016, on the culture of dissent and protest politics in Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi. Guest-Editorial: JNU and Its Traditions of Dissent by Malavika Binny Sedition in a Democracy by Meera Gopakumar Capitalising…

Freedom of Speech in the University

Freedom of Speech in the University

Partha Chatterjee Image courtesy https://medium.com/@montouche/a-collection-of-thoughts-on-the-perils-of-nationalism-816981f0b75f#.sxagk2mj4 "Even though from childhood I had been taught that the idolatry of the nation is almost better than reverence for God and humanity, I believe I have outgrown the teaching, and it is my conviction that my countrymen will truly gain their India by fighting against that education which teaches…

Anand Teltumbde on Current Student Struggles

Anand Teltumbde on Current Student Struggles

The Malayalam weekly Madhyamam asked Anand Teltumbde, a writer, scholar of peoples’ movements, civil rights activist with CPDR Mumbai, inter alia, two questions relating to student movements. Here are his answers: Your article in the Economic & Political Weekly in October 2015 has succinctly captured the perils of raising memorials of Dr B.R. Ambedkar while…

JNU Students on Indefinite Hunger Strike

JNU Students on Indefinite Hunger Strike

Photographs: V. Arun Kumar Twenty students from the Jawaharlal Nehru University, including students’ union president Kanhaiya Kumar, have sat on an indefinite hunger strike starting April 27, in protest against the actions of the High-Level Enquiry Committee (HLEC), and demanding that punitive action be revoked. The enquiry committee on April 25 fined Kumar Rs. 10,000…

Ambedkar and Freedom

Ambedkar and Freedom

Professor Sukhadeo Thorat—economist, former head of the University Grants Commission and chair of the Thorat Committee, constituted in 2006, which found evidence (pdf) of widespread harassment of students from the scheduled castes and tribes at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Delhi—spoke recently at JNU’s Freedom Square on Ambedkar’s ‘nationalism’, his concerns about…

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…

Romila Thapar: “The battle now is between religious nationalism and secular nationalism . . .”

Romila Thapar: “The battle now is between religious nationalism and secular nationalism . . .”

Romila Thapar, who has been associated with Jawaharlal Nehru University for many years, speaks to writer Githa Hariharan on the idea of a university like JNU. The idea was to explore Indian society through inter-disciplinary studies and discussion. At the Centre for Historical Studies with which she was associated, the past was not another country;…

Shital Sathe of the Kabir Kala Manch in conversation with Sudhanva Deshpande

Shital Sathe of the Kabir Kala Manch in conversation with Sudhanva Deshpande

Singing songs of ordinary people, especially Dalits, Shital Sathe has been singing of the marginalised, dalits and others all over Maharashtra. She is one of the vibrant singer-poets of the Kabir Kala Manch. Attacked for her trenchant critique of the caste order, the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) – currently behind the attacks of students…

JNU and Our democracy

JNU and Our democracy

  Image: Ishan Anand Recent events at the Jawaharlal Nehru University raise many questions pertinent to us as citizens of India. The questions have become imperative because it is apparent that many who govern us have little sensitivity to understanding the fundamental issues crucial to governance. For example, what are the necessary aspects of a…

Romila Thapar: “The protests by JNU students and teachers have been remarkable . . .”

Romila Thapar: “The protests by JNU students and teachers have been remarkable . . .”

Eminent historian Romila Thapar has been associated with JNU since its earliest years. She talks to writer Githa Hariharan about JNU's vision for educating the young to be questioning citizens. She also traces the pattern of recent attacks against voices of dissent on Indian campuses. Her advice to students and teachers is that they should…