Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Anna University going retro?

Recently the CEO of bazee.com was arrested because an IIT Kharagpur tried to sell (with limited success) a pornography clip of two school kids. That is a classic case of the law being an ass. Why else would serial sex offenders and rapists and murderers would be given 'protection' by the law itself and a poor guy be arrested, for co-operating with the law.

Now, my alma mater, Anna University, has banned camera-phones within the campus. The reason given is 'it invades the privacy, can be used to blackmail people'. I suggest, go ahead and ban cameras too as they can be used for the same purposes!

Following this 'DPS School Scandal', it is said that many colleges in 'progressive' Mumbai have banned couples of the same-sex even traveling together in a bike! It reminds me of my 'co-educational' school days when we had a school full of Syrian Catholic teachers who would to the sky if they saw a 'boy talking with a girl', inside or outside the school and segregated the class into boys and girls, with wide space between the 'boys row' and the 'girls row'. There were teachers who would 'blackmark' a boy because he 'talked with a girl' and give him hell of a time, even reporting to the 'headmaster' and get him trashed.

For some, college was supposed to be a major step away from this 'segregation' and freedom. Friends who joined 'reputed engineering colleges' like SRM, Sathyabama, etc were pushed a step backward. This, from an email forward I received, summarises everything parents supported in the name of 'discipline' and 'character': No casual dresses, only black shoes, no interaction between boys and girls, no cutting classes, seperation of boys and girls not just inside the campus but in the college bus also (extended to the bus-stop). My friends who studied in Sathyabama have also told about the attenders/peons being 'rewarded' for reporting such incidents to the 'management'. My cousin has told about how every record note-book has to have the same cover and class-notes were to be made (in college?).

In case we don't know, or we forgot, Sathyabama was built by the greatest liquor barons of all times, Jeppiar (said to be the biggest rowdy for beloved MGR). I am afraid Anna University will turn into just another Sathyabama or SRM. This, in addition to the dilution of brand value by, what the public understands as, 'making all engineering colleges part of Anna University'. But hey, we are the 'largest Technical university in the World', bullshit!

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