Poor reflection on society Students out on the street
It was ugly and this is a poor reflection on society and not only on those who screamed, kicked around, blocked the road and swaggered around as if the road is their personal fiefdom. An ugly scene it was to see students, in their uniforms complete with neck tie and all, blocking the road and physically pushing back a couple along with their child on the road that leads to the airport. If this was not throwing one’s weight around at its most ugly form then what would qualify as ugly acts is a question that may well be raised here. On September 29, students of different colleges rose as one to protest the decision of the Government to defer the elections to the student unions and while it is understandable for students to give vent to their anger and sense of frustration, letting the ugly side of their personality come to the fore in such a brazen manner was unsightly. Not surprisingly a particular video shot of a couple and their young toddler who were physically pushed back and told to vamoose while they were on their way to the airport has gone viral on the social media sites and it says something deeply disturbing. Students should ideally be inside their classrooms or within the campus of their institutes during school or college hour but to see them otherwise and even physically confronting a couple who were out on some work does not exactly fit them in the bill of students. Not the first time that students have demeaned themselves with such crass activities and if one takes the reality into consideration, this may not be the last either. This is where the warning from the Chief Minister to the students to behave gains credence. And the roguish behaviour of the students is nothing but a reflection of society and underlines the train of thought they have been brought up on in their growing years. Just how did young students come under the impression that they can throw their weight around and rough up anyone on the road ? Burning college benches and desks in the middle of the road, blocking the traffic and so intense was the incident that the All India Radio in its daily traffic broadcasts for the day had suggested the listeners to avoid taking the airport road on the said day or to start much earlier if they had to take the said route.
The conduct of the students certainly did no leave many amused and while fingers have been pointed at the authority concerned for ‘needlessly’ postponing the college election, this still should not condone the behaviour of the students on the streets of Imphal. The students may have been at the forefront this time around, but in more than one way it was a reflection of society, a place where youngsters have come under the impression that they can go to any extent to get their viewpoints flashed. A word of regret has been expressed but it is this mindset again which came out in all its ugliness when student leaders of Manipur University purportedly directed some reporters that they should not file a report when some students gathered and gheraoed the Registrar’s office at MU following the show cause notice served on an Assistant Professor on September 29. It is this mindset which is deeply disturbing and the conduct of the students is in many ways a reflection of society. This is where parents and elders need to deeply introspect and see how their conduct and the value system they have transmitted to the younger lots have started coming out on the streets of Imphal. As for the Government, a more convincing explanation is needed for deferring the election to student unions. That this should come about when everyone seems to be swearing by ‘quality education’ is deeply disturbing.