Teachers | On Vanaspati | On prosopis
04 March 1995
| Some Ruminations
was my kinda ‘odious approximation, a haunting conscience, a preposterous
shadow’, my Achilles heel, in short, my nemesis. 😊
I’ve always loved
the original, savoury, flavoury, Upma done by Amma at home, for our breakfast sans vanaspati. However, this
particular Upma, was an aversion to all of us, because of the huge overdose of
Dalda (vanaspati) that was chaotically shot into the Upma, 😉 that made it both inedible and uneatable! [Vanaspati ghee was
used as a cheap alternative to cow ghee].
price, one litre of vanaspati ghee costs Rs.140/- while one litre of desi cow
ghee costs Rs.620/- (Aavin), vanaspati being almost five times lesser in price].
Hence an aversion for the ‘vanaspatified’ Uppuma 😉 Quite intriguingly, vanaspati seems to have been introduced
into India by Dutch traders, as early as in 1931, as a cheap substitute for the
highly expensive desi cow ghee.
[On an aside,
this is much
akin to the highly invasive prosopis juliflora [or seemai karuvelam] that
was introduced into India as early as in the 1870s, as a cheap ‘fuel substitute’.
Quite interestingly, in 2017, the Madurai
bench of the Madras High Court had ordered the Govt of Tamil Nadu to completely
weed out and eradicate the species from the state. However, sensing that
nothing much had happened, in 2022, the Madras High Court, [also highly dissatisfied
with the Govt’s measures], directed the government to immediately frame a
policy to eradicate the plant. Hence, the state on 13 July 2022 framed a policy
to eliminate the invasive species].
back to 04th March 1995, into the morning -
had just happened! We were all tricked into coming to school on this particular
day, under a pretext!
Pretext, btw, means, ‘a pretended
reason for doing something that is used to hide the real reason.’ [Cambridge
our Physics Teacher did to all of us – his ‘students’.
set us all
a trap! ☹
giving us all, our Physics Practical Marks, he made us all [all the 50 of us]
to come to our respective classes, and made us varnish our desks – that too on
went something like this: First, we had to apply sand paper, and then wax was
given to us, to varnish the desks. Headmaster was also there to inspect it all.
After a forenoon filled with varnishing, much to our chagrin, our pants and tee
shirts were smeared with wax all over.
I look back
on this episode, I feel so bad at students having been asked to do menial jobs
was one among the most expensive hostels in the City back then. And we had come
to School to study, not to do menial jobs that someone else was employed and
paid to do.
that, teachers or professors who exploit students to do such menial works are a
blot on the entire profession.
a blot on
If only we
the guts to complain to our parents, and help lodge a complaint against such exploitative
teachers who forced us into doing such menial works, things would have been better
atleast for the subsequent batches of students.
criminals – wolves
in sheep’s clothing – who double up as teachers interestingly, also earn a hefty
and huge government salary, and warm their bottoms in comfy chairs, while using
pretexts and pressurizing tactics to exploit such gullible students to their
said, is the noblest of professions, nay vocations. If a teacher gets guideship
to milk money from their wards by the lakhs, it’s a shame, a blot, and even a curse!
A ward is
money-spinning ATM or a Bench Cleaner, or a Table Cleaner. They are the pride
of their parents. Their sweetest bundle of joy. The apple of their eyes! The
cynosure of their lives!
known at least
a hundred instances of wards having had to grease the palms of their guides, to
help them wrap up on their PhDs. Else, extensions by the dozens, await the trespasser!
from our own Institution was victim to these exploitative tactics of an RP [Research
Supervisor from another Govt College] and we all appreciate her boldness for deciding
to call it quits with this mammonish guy – mainly because of the abominable
ways in which he exploited her economically all through her period of study. One
signature from this perverted professor costs a minimum of ten thousand rupees,
we are told!
to guide not to exploit the ward entrusted under their care.
So dear students be very cautious while
choosing your guide as well! Don’t fall prey to exploitative guides who use
this ‘opportunity’ to milk their wards.
exploits a student for their own benefit, is a blot on the teaching community.
If at all
wants to exploit a student, I have a small suggestion: let the teacher
concerned, pay at least 50% of their salary to the student whom they intend / wish
/ desire to exploit. Else, the government should enact laws to make such teachers
arrested / fined and even prosecuted.
How much of
a huge trust
does the parent have on the institution, with such beautiful dreams for their
will be lamenting and languishing – not able to speak out also – for fear of
being ostracized and punished.
This unholy exploitation is a huge blot
on the vocation in itself.
venting my indignation.
we get complaints from parents over anonymous emails, we are not able to do
anything about it, because of the very nature of their anonymity. The student
is shell-shocked and even traumatized beyond measure, to even think of giving a
complaint against a particular teacher who exploits her, day in and day out.
the parents can
boldly write to our Principal with their designation and name, specifying the
instances, immediate action can be initiated against such erring teachers. That’s
because anonymous complaints don’t have legal backing and so don’t stand any
chance of the criminal being prosecuted.
if only such teachers could make use of the valuable time and ‘services’ of their
own children to do all this varnishing, polishing etc!
who are entrusted under their custody as their own, and make use of ‘paid
labour’ to do all these menial works, and just allow the student to study!
personally feel that,
these golden years for the student are the formative years that shape and sculpt
and mould and carve their blessed future for them. With high hopes the
parents send their sweethearts to school, spending a fortune on their hall
fees, oops… hostel fees, with such golden dreams for them.
is a huge
criminal offence to prevent students from studying during their golden,
formative years, especially during their precious study time! As a student who
has stayed in the hostel/hall for many years, I’ve known the exploitation that these
voiceless kids undergo at the hands of these ‘devilish’ teachers.
Students have enrolled themselves in a
school/ college to study! Not to spend their time varnishing, cleaning, polishing
etc, and working for the hostel – which
is just a a temporary, makeshift shelter/ rental abode for their period of
study! Nothing more! Nothing less!
sculptors of the students / wards entrusted under their care and guidance.