So I’m sick and tired of outsiders leering and asking me repeatedly if there is an IIT in Jodhpur. Yes, it is, and in case your general awareness was a little better, you’d know that there are now 16 IITs. All this debate about Smriti Irani deciding to open up a whole new set of IITs and the rage against it has got even more people talking, and I see all this negativity and hate about how the established IITs need to be improved before any such thoughts can be entertained.
And justified these arguments are completely, because it is not the smartest move in the book when all the 16 IITs can be much better than they are today. I am not an eternal optimist, and I am not biased against any institutions in particular, but I am a graduate from one of these “new IITs”, and though the picture is painted horribly and looks gory, the intrinsic beauty of all that gore is missed out by these posts.
And I decided not to argue, not to put myself into the storm’s eye, but when people from your own college, your batchmates, your juniors, start questioning the point of it all, the judgement of placements, and the idea of starting our own IIT, it all gets a little muddled for me. I want to seek the truth, but I have my own argument as well, and please read objectively before you feel the need to insult my intelligence.
My judgement could be flawed, but whom are you (you who speak ill of us) comparing yourself with. And on what criteria?
Maybe I like being rebellious, liking the underdogs, and generally just disagreeing with the whole lot of you, but let’s have a rational argument on this.
What exactly are your expectations from an IIT, or for that matter, any engineering college? Fantastic labs? Latest infrastructure? Brand name? Jobs? All of the above? Is it something as simple as canteens, good mess food, or career growth and opportunites?
I see IITJ students holding their own wherever I go. There is no weakness in terms of academics too. I admit, the gestation period is too long, but otherwise we’re doing fine as an institution aren’t we? A few hiccups are always felt in any organisation of this size. Any one who has organised a festival will know this. IITJ may not equip us with getting into the Ivy Leagues across the world right now but it equips us with life skills.After that, it’s what you do with it that matters.
I’m not saying the faculty couldn’t be better, the facilities couldn’t be better, but even with that, there’s no saying we’ll have better placements, if jobs are what you’re looking for. Which college today has the best infrastructure, the best labs? The private ones with the most money? IITJ has some very good students who do something – they teach you how to live. I’ve told people the same thing and I get a statement saying that that’s not what they came to IIT for. Are you just looking at placements and careers as an end motive?
But then in your defence, you are not comparing yourself with these private colleges. You are comparing to older IITs?
At an old IIT, you get a nice good 20 lakh job once you graduate. As soon as you collect your certificate, companies jump the line to get you and pay you lakhs of rupees. Just because you are from an older IIT. Right? Look again.
Again, I’m not blaming the students who didn’t get placed. Sometimes it’s just hard luck. But that doesn’t mean that getting all these facilities would have gotten jobs. Don’t blame the facilities hence.
Enough companies come to campus to pick each and every one of us. But so many times we hear of companies who come and don’t pick anyone and return. Do you think these companies spend lakhs of rupees to fly all the way, spend three days of their time with you, and not pick anyone just to tease us? Let’s look inside before we blame outside. But the blame would have to be shared by the administration or the faculty for not creating the conducive atmosphere. So what’s a conducive atmosphere?
I can understand if on weekends also students want to go to labs and do work and we’re not giving them the conducive atmosphere. I still remember how people used to shout when the TV cards used to be taken away for an event or a festival to increase attendence. At the end of the day, we’re large pampered kids who want to have their cake and eat it too.
All people want to do is enjoy their time, and be handed a job at the end of the road. Sweet!
Well, it doesn’t work that way!
I heard this once – in August of the best year of CSE recruitment till date: “Where are the CSE companies? You placement people are doing timepass. We want our jobs.”
Taking part in extra-curriculars works. I’ve seen it on countless occassions. You ask me if not brand name, if not good infrastructure, what will get you a job?
Companies want proactive people, along with some smartness. Smartness almost every person in college has.
You can see it in the confidence at the end of four years.
You can differentiate easily between people who worked and who didn’t. And that is where our IIT is going in the direction of other IITs. We’re adopting the bad habits. In an ideal world, you shouldn’t be able to differentiate between any two randomly picked up students from a batch. The deviation should be zero, and the average should be high. Kalra sir warned us about this.
Another thing, there is no ownership. People don’t care about what other people are upto as long as they can enjoy. And then, they want a nice fat job offer waiting for you at the end of the tunnel. Well, wake up, reality is here. If you slog, life will reward you. No matter the circumstances.
This essay of sorts is the making of random conversations I’ve had with some of you over quite some time, as well as majorly with Krishna Sudhama over the past few hours. Many thanks to them for their inputs. If you have more, kindly let’s start a discussion below. I would appreciate if there were no name calling, and definitely, if this does not concern you, refrain from commenting.
Lives in Bangalore. Oh, he must work in IT. NO HE DOESN’T.
Some tags never leave you alone. But once you’ve fallen into this rut, very few break out. So what does one do to break out?
Some take up an MBA – oh, classic mainstream.
Some go abroad for an MS – Throw a stone and you’ll hit an Indian in the US two times out of three.
Some pursue Civil Services – Do I need to count the number of students sitting in Delhi preparing for India’s most prestigious exam for graduates?
Jobs – Don’t even get me started.
Even entrepreneurship is so pseudo-popular nowadays it doesn’t classify as “path-breaking”, but it is a noble course.
In fact, all of them are. My point, when I started to write this, was not to point fingers and call each one of you pursuing these paths “common”. My point is, standing out in India seems tougher than ever before. Everyone’s doing their best, which isn’t making it any easier.
In an ideal world, your hard work and effort is recognized and rewarded. In a non-ideal country with 1.3 billion people, no one gives a shit. Because they’re all trying their best to stand out, among their peers, relatives, friends, family. But the question is, can you be unique in 1.3 billion specimens of the same specie?
You can try. But won’t that make you all the same?
So why not stand down, take a step back, observe the rat race from afar and enjoy life as it comes?
Mostly, there’s no point to that. Not because it’s unproductive, but because someone’s beat you to it already. Population, bitches.
Dalton: I’m exercising the right not to walk.
- Dead Poets Society (1989)
She was lost. Like everyone around her. Unlike everyone around her. And yet, she couldn’t recognise why she was different.
Too smart, they called her. Huh. That was funny indeed, considering she felt so dumb right now. She didn’t fit in right, anywhere. She was not dogged by bad luck, she was bad luck. And unluckily for everyone around her, she was good at being herself.
Friends had come and gone for years. She missed them sometimes. Sometimes she forgot about them. She had never experience true love. And yet it was all around her, making her feel hollow. As if life wanted to let her know what she was missing.
But then, she had accepted long back that she wasn’t the kind to love and be loved. She couldn’t possibly care for a person so much as to put them through so much pain. And she would change everyone she was with, so what was the point of loving someone who wouldn’t be the same in a few months time.
Her family was dead. She spoke to dogs when she felt lonely. And yet, here she was convincing her people could one day accept her for what she would be. Or was. Or could be. She didn’t know. Maybe.
And yet, she would wonder what would happen if she died. Would there be a funeral? Would people mourn? Would someone cry? Would he rue the moment when he wanted to speak to her but hadn’t? Would someone feel lonely, like she did right now?
Would she at all be missed? It was an enticing question. One that everyone would love to know the answer off. The question that really mattered. Did she have any impact at all on the world around her, or was the impression of her body on her bed the only mark she left in this world? She couldn’t answer these questions. She wanted to know the answers.
One day, she couldn’t take the pressure and decided to find out. It was an insignificant death.
Try to understand.
It will be difficult, but I’ll give you a hand.
Mock me in front of your friends,
Walk with me, I’ll tie the loose ends.
Unless of course, you want to know,
I shall never tell you,
The pain it takes to let you go,
They, they laugh at me, in my lonesome ways,
Not knowing the fact of those glorious days,
We walked together hand in hand,
Through mountains, forests, and beaches of sand.
And though sometimes, I’ve moved on,
I’ve imagined a hundred times the sound of that horn.
Would it be different had I been close?
Could I have saved you? Pushing with all my force?
I lost you over a phone call, that’s not the way to end things, you know.
The voice on the other end, let me know, it was time to let you go.
I tried so hard, it’s been so long,
I’ll never be able to sing that swansong.
I’ll wait for you, as I waited then,
I’ll work my way up to heaven.
We’ll meet and talk and walk again,
My waiting shall not go in vain.
Now tell me, would they understand?
They mock me and my words behind my back,
They feel I’m loveless, crazy, lonesome, free,
They will never understand the real me.
Freedom, from prejudice and mistrust,
Unsettled by this gaining unrest,
I look, I search, I scour, I plead,
Under these bones of steel I bleed,
Uncertain of the air, forever lost in despair,
I search for my one true friend,
They say this is the end.
Conquered by thoughts of death and suicide,
I dissolve myself in cyanide,
Looking for the answers, biding my time,
Is this the cost of sanity, heinous crime!
Forgetting what my morals stood for,
Uncontrollable anger, tastes so sour.
I feel like jumping, isn’t there any other way?
Doomsday! Doomsday! Doomsday!
Rattled by the consequences, I admire the ones who strive,
Untouched by the pains of agony, in life after life they thrive.
Why must it be me who bears this heavy burden?
Lay down with me, share my pain, in coming undone.
In a secret chamber by my heart,
Hidden is the answer, right from the start.
Yet, unable to see, blind to this cause I am,
No joy or kindness is showered upon this lamb.
Sacrifice is a must, someone must die,
So that you may go and live your lie.
Free from this lust, I jump, I jump!
Let me begone, sail my ashes away,
You never asked me to live another day