Dear JNU’s orange, you have been named ‘oranges’ contrasting the name, given to the student of Harvard who has been called ‘Apple’. You are called orange because you are tasty, nutritious and healthy for society and country at large. However, the apple of Harvard might be looking very good in colour and outlook but it is deficient in nutrition and also not available to all as it has been primarily the fruit of rich community. However, you are orange and you never have any kind of hatred for apple, as you are aware of the concept of co-existence, which is necessary for survival of human kind. For detail of this comparison between Harvard’s Apple and JNU’s Orange, you can read an article published in ‘The Hindu’ by Dr. Ajay Gudawarthy by just searching on Google the title “Harvard’s Apple vs JNU’s Orange. So be ‘orange’ not ‘apple’!
JNU has experienced the devastating tremor in recent years and you might be looking at, as a great conspiracy by the government. It may be but it is just not that only. JNU has been always on radar of any government so nothing new has happened to it. It was evident that mighty government would take on it with extraordinary force, let us say violence. JNU has also seen the ‘sine-die’ situation in 1970s. But you ‘oranges’ survived just because your alma mater was JNU. You always belonged to JNU. But see the tectonic change in yourself. Now you are no more JNUite rather your loyalty is more to SFI, BAPSA, ABVP or AISA. There was a time, when principles on which JNU was being created, used to be taken higher than the student’s organization utopia. Dear ‘oranges’, JNU was always cherishing the country’s diversity and given most scientific deprivation point on the basis of regional backwardness. It is the only university in India, which conducts its entrance examination in the second category districts to attract the talent existing in the most ignored area of this country. It could never let any one have excuse that it was not convenient to travel to Delhi or Patna to appear in entrance examination. It kept the fee structure lowest so that no one would drop his or her studies in between due to financial constraints. It provided hundreds of scholarship to the students surpassing their caste, religion, sex and region. It had hundred percent hostel facilities so that no one feels away from home. Rather! It was new home and better home. There are thousands of other thing exist there, which make JNU not different but unique. You know that and those who do not know they will have to visit the campus and stay for some days to experience this uniqueness.
Nevertheless, whenever government wanted to strike down the uniqueness, you all stood up and saved it successfully. It is painful that you are failing now. Dear oranges, you need to understand the reason of failure and you should have capacity to accept the failure. It is very difficult but reasonable to accept the defeat. You have not been able to convert single struggle into success in recent past. Go deep, search for reason. You would find your self ‘The Reason’. You just left your alma mater JNU alone to fight and you are fighting for SFI, BAPSA, ABVP or AISA. You must have understood also the reason of defeat. When you were fighting for JNU, you defeated the government every time, now you are fighting for your party and getting defeated.
Dear Orange! You are orange and happy to be squeezed for the benefits of the country and society that is your destiny. Be orange, the oranges of JNU, be loyal to your alma mater. JNU was crying when some of you were ‘shutting JNU’ reflecting your loyalty for your party. Recently, I met an old JNUite. He was dying for his alma mater not the party for which once he raised slogans. This is the change happened in recent years. Now, you have friends within your party, you started hating others. Your political score is more important than the score of JNU. Remember, it is better to be orange than apple or anything. It is important to be loyal to the institution (JNU) than the political organization like SFI, BAPSA, ABVP or AISA. You are any day better than the apple of Harvard. However, learn from apple also. Apple works for rich primarily and dear orange you work for people. Don’t make JNU a resource rather you become resource for your alma mater JNU. Otherwise, you would be defeated everyday by the fundamentalism, conservatisms and sectarianism.
Deepak Bhaskar, Ph.D
Alumni of JNU. Presently Assistant Professor, Daulat Ram College, University of Delhi