Monday, 18 November 2019

Culture of Silence

What has been amazing and simultaneously troubling is that there is complete silence from academics about what they have gone through in their lives and careers. There is almost no protest by those who have been denied legitimate positions in academics. Even those who have been at the receiving end have not come out in the open.

Silence among those who perpetrated havoc on others is understandable. One does not, of course, expect them to talk. But the others? The apparent oath of silence is akin to what we come across among cricketers who refrain from letting out what happens in the dressing room. The match-fixing and betting that is undoubtedly prevalent in cricketing circles and involves some of the players.
Educational institutions -- those that are administered by the state governments as also the central universities -- are being subjected to political interference that is steadily increasing.

The various kinds of fixing that happen in the Indian academic realm will put a cricketer to shame in terms of the sheer ingenuity and cussedness that is employed in academics. The cricketers may have strong and compelling reasons to guard their turf and maintain a convention by constantly increasing the size of the carpet under which their shenanigans get swept. But does it behove academics, whose coffers are almost always funded by public funds to keep a tight lid on how misuse, manipulation, and corruption prevail in this so-called noble profession. Not to mention sexual exploitation of women colleagues, research scholars and postgraduate students.

From The Closed Nature of Indian Universities by M. A. Kalam published in www. TheIndiaForum Nov 1 2019