Dissecting the Indian Institute of Technology Madras – APSC Ban issue, what exactly has happened?


There is a lot of fuss going on about a student group called APSC’s (Ambedkar Periyar Study Circle) ban in IIT Madras by the administration. The reason that is being shown in media is such that the decision is taken because the group is conducting anti modi discussions. I studied in IIT Madras for 5 years, I never saw discrimination on the campus based on caste or political outfit which you are supporting to. Okay, so are they discriminating now?

Before that let me give you a small background about APSC ie., Ambedkar Periyar Study Circle. It was a group formed some of the students of IIT Madras to discuss social issues. The discussions mostly happen around the caste discrimination, language politics and other social issues. They have been on the campus for more than a year and why now did they get banned?

Let us now see the series of events which led to the ban of the group and decide for ourselves whether the Media’s commentary on the issue is a rightful way of projecting the incident or not

1. Ambedkar Periyar Study Cirlce circulated the following pamphlet for an event they organized. The event was “Contemporary relevance of Dr.Ambedkar, a talk by Dr. R. Vivekananda Gopal, Dravidian University” on 14th of April. Here is the link to the online invite that was circulated. Also below is the pamphlet version of the event.

 

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There is another student group named RSYF which has been talking about similar issues but was not part of the debate. These are some of the pamphlets that were circulated by them. The important thing to note here is they have not used IIT Madras name in their initiative. They talked mostly about brahmin domination in the campus.

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2. A group of anonymous people in the name of IIT Madras students emailed the Ministry of HRD about these issues asking to look into the same.

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3. To which the Ministry of HRD has forwarded the letter to the Director of IIT Madras. Below is the letter which the MHRD has forwarded to the Director.

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4. IIT Madras banned the APSC group and issued the following Media statement quoting the below guidelines on independent student bodies like APSC.

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So what’s the event about in a nutshell?

a. The APSC group used the name and logo of IIT Madras on the pamphlets and the banners that are put up. No people you shouldn’t have done that.

b. They used harsh words against a religion and called for the destruction of it using the name of B R Ambedkar which might lead to disturbance of the communal harmony in the campus. I got your point that caste system needs to be destroyed and it is because of the religion that caste system exists but you can’t use words like destruction you see. If I say we need to destroy a religion because some of its members are the reason behind terror attacks around the world, you know what happens? I will be dead the next day. People of present day are not that grown up to take religion not seriously. Especially in India when you are saying something you should think before you say that.

c. As for the implementation of Reservation goes. The numbers that are shown in the RTI might be true that doesn’t imply that the Administration is biased. Let me give you the logic atleast what I understand from the point of JEE selection. Let’s say the total marks of JEE is 500 and let’s say the cut off for General category is 200 and for the Reserved category is anywhere between 50-100. These are the cut offs you should meet irrespective of your caste. If you are a student from reserved category and had not scored above the cutoff you will not be given a seat. Yes, if there are 50 seats in total and 100 students has scored above the cutoff, the first 50 students are given seats based on merit. But if only 20 students crossed the cutoff, the remaining 30 seats will remain empty.

d. So as per the pamphlet goes, it states that 64% are from so called “upper caste” and only around “6%” are from reserved category. I want to ask you friend what happened to the rest of the seats? Who are sitting on the other 30% seats? Did you raise an RTI about the selection criteria for these scholars and Faculty? Did you enquire about the marks these scholars have achieved? You didn’t. If you are a responsible person and want to state facts you should have done that before asking to implement reservation. Don’t get me wrong, actually I am all for Reservations.

e. As for the other part goes, the MHRD shouldn’t have given due importance to an anonymous letter, however their message to the Director is fairly simple and are just requesting the director to look into the issue which is creating hatred in the campus. As a responsible ministry they have looped in the IIT M administration to take care of the issue since IIT is an autonomous body. I don’t see how they are trying to control the decision of an autonomous body.

f. The administration of IIT M should have responded to the complaints earlier. Now that they took immediate action after a letter from the MHRD it all looks completely different to the people. If they had been reviewing on the happenings in the campus the issue would not have got that attention.

g. The issue which is about the language politics and religion has become Anti Modi campaign on Media and the projection was the students got banned because they are talking ill of the government. Let me tell you the kind of talks that happen in IIT Madras. There was a talk that happened where a guy started preaching Vedic Science and the students, faculty debunked him. There was a talk by Teesta Setalvad who is famously known for her anti-modi stand.

h. It’s a shame on our media that the issue has now been escalated to a level that it’s made a Smriti Irani vs Rahul Gandhi issue.

i. I have nothing to say on Cow-slaughter or to be precise killing of any animal. It’s your level of consciousness which decides what is right or what is wrong and I don’t even want to comment about the bill or segregation of the messes for that matter as well. If you have issues with Policy yeah you are always welcome to debate that. You have always done that and have been doing for the past one year.

What made the institute to ban you now?

The only thing which got APSC banned is the hatred that they are spreading against a religion on the basis of caste using the name of IIT Madras. So I urge everyone to go through the issue clearly and understand the ground facts not to form biased opinions that are being aired on TV channels.

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9 Comments

  1. 1

    Dude your arguments are fair. But let me point out the loopholes in ur line of arguments :

    1) your arguments are pertaining to RSYF ( which talked about reservations ). I see nowhere reservations being mentioned in the APSC poster above.

    2) Again in the point “d” where you have mentioned RTI n all pertains to RSYF and not APSC my dear friend.

    3) And i havent seen any of the posters of APSC expect the one which you have posted above. I fail to see any IITM logo in it as you have mentioned in point “a”.

    If they have really used any logo of IITM on their posters its really unfortunate. Kindly rectify ur article and put ur arguments that really pertain to APSC rather than bringing RSYF into the picture and attribute the (wrong?) doings of RSYF to APSC

    • 2

      Hello Ravi, thanks for the comment. Yeah you pointed things correctly. The arguments are related to RSYF, I made these points because they are also part of the cause for outrage. Since RSYF has not used the logo of IIT Madras, I guess they are left out from the whole debate whereas APSC was de commissioned mainly because they have used the IIT M logo, the picture of which I have uploaded in the article now.

  2. 3

    This is what is called as heights of hypocrisy. Please let me know why did you delete my comment in the first place after replying to it. I did mention that your article was misleading and you have accepted that.

    this is the proof of it.

    http://imgur.com/0BOafCR

    I was happy in the first place that you have accepted that it was a bit out of line but its pathetic to see that you have deleted the same. The only thing i can conclude from this is that you are having an agenda to mislead the public by distorting the facts.

    Now lets play this game. This post is shared 103 times on facebook. I am going to paste this screen shot on all those 103 pages and wherever this is trending unless you restore my original comment. I will be then happy to delete this comment.

    • 4

      Dude, calm down! Scroll through the page properly and you can see your comment well placed on the page. Before posting something make sure you check it twice.

    • 5

      You are more than welcome to copy paste that snapshot of yours on wherever you need because we don’t delete comments or we are not scared to express opinions. I am really sad to see how quickly people form opinions. You didn’t check the page properly and you concluded that we have deleted your comments and you decided that we have hidden agenda and you want to copy paste the screenshot which you have taken at 9.50 PM while the original comments were published at 8.50 PM. Do you think are we idiots to keep your comment and our reply for more than an hour till you take the screenshot and then delete it?

    • 6

      See, there are two comment sections in the site. One is Facebook comments and the other general comments. Seeing 0 comments on Facebook section, have you decided we removed your comment?

    • 7

      Mr. Ravi lemme ask you a simple question, do you mean APSC does not endorse the views of RSYF? If not, come out in public and say, we don’t believe in that MANU DHARMA REIGNS shit, and we didn’t mean it when we said Hinduism must be destroyed. You guys have the courage to do so? Are you man enough to come out in public and debate the issue? Let’s arrange an open-debate on the issues bothering the OPPRESSED LOWER caste students in the insti.
      If you guys do accept the views of RSYF then you are as guilty as they are, PERIOD.
      A word of advice, this is an educational institution, don’t try to propagate some propaganda here. Lot of young minds blossom here, if possible achieve something, invent something and show what you are capable of. If you can’t do that, please SHUT THE FUCK UP!

      • 8

        Mr. Ravi where are you now? Educational institutes are meant for education and not political activity. If some people have come to IIT to propagate their political agenda utilizing all the help rendered by India’s great reservation system, then they should be expelled from campus.

  3. 9

    Thanks for bringing out the truth behind the story with proof. In my opinion, the ban on this group is justified. People may have different opinions.

    But what was really hurting was to see the media spreading rumours and sensationalizing something like this about my Alma mater. Seeing the truth behind the entire incident, I feel the media should be penalized for spreading rumours for the sake of TRP. Shame on Indian media.

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