Long Live Hashtag Activism #hokkolorob

hashtag activism

I woke up today to a deluge of posts by people extending their “solidarity” to students of Jadavpur University who were manhandled by the Kolkata Police last night. The “students” in question had gheraoed the Vice Chancellor of the University “peacefully” from noon till 3 AM at night. As per reports of some news channels, the Vice Chancellor was physically assaulted by few students, after which fearing for his life, he had to call the police.

What amused me the most is the fact that these “rebellious” students were relaying the “state sponsored brutality “live” through FB and Twitter. Delhi-based media, which these days treats FB posts as Gospel truth jumped into the fray and launched into an attack on the WB Govt (no lessons learnt from attack on NE students in Bangalore and Assam riots). Amusing how your comrades are “being molested” by “goons” and you find time to update your FB status!

The students were carrying out “peaceful protests” not for justice for the victim of molestation of a JU student, but to shield the perpetrators (reason attributed to hostel politics). Student politics of JU is known all the world over; JU has given rise to Naxalites in the past. Only three years ago Debalina (who worked closely with Kishenji) was arrested from campus. Known Naxal sympathisers like Jishnu-da have often held meetings on the campus under the banner of USDF/AISA and other organisations. But that’s besides the point.

I have a few pertinent questions for those who are the flag bearers of hashtag activism today:

  1. When student organisations of ruling parties (be it in Bengal or anywhere else) submit something as trivial as deputations to VC’s in universities, media is quick to brand it as “gherao”. But actually locking up faculty members from noon till late night is “peaceful protest”? Even the first report of the agitation appeared in the media at 7 PM….
  2. VC’s are in-charge of law and order within the campus. If police can be deployed in other universities, why can they not be brought to JU, specially after the dignity of women is under attack from other students!!!
  3. Media and FB “activists” are agog about “outsiders who attacked students. What about the presence of Asim “Kaka” Chatterjee and his bunch of followers at protest site? What were students of other institutes doing there?
  4. All students who were detained by police to clear the gherao have been released. Sadly, a few students are hopspitalised. But has the media even uttered a word on faculty members who are hospitalised after being locked up for hours by students?
  5. Those who are shouting their lungs out on FB (notice the sarcasm here) in solidarity with students, why didn’t the students protest after the molestation that happened way back in the last week of August? Why did the students not demand the arrest of the perpetrators of the molestation (even after an FIR by the victim?)
  6. Is the core issue still the molestation of the girl or is it now a battle of egos with the authorities?

P.S. – Obviously I know, people will tell me I have been “paid” to write this piece, that I am a “volunteer” of the government. Unlike them, I have not sold my conscience to fake hashtag activism to look cool on Twitter/FB.


About Agnivo Niyogi

Typical Aantel, reader, blogger, news addict, opinionated. Digital media enthusiast. Didi fanboi. Joy Bangla!

Posted on September 17, 2014, in Politics and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.

  1. Arunanshu Mandal

    You are absolutely right..gherao is another name of torture. Fringe leftist lunatics..successors of the goons who killed Gopal Sen, decapitated Vidyasagar idols have hijacked the hearts and minds of JU students. That they have managed to survive in the campus has been largely the munificance of a benevolent state. That teachers are next to parents and they need to be respected has totally been lost to the brainwash students are subject to from first year. Let them be in police lockup for some time if at all they realize what torture they inflicted on tge teachers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. 1) Why were there no women police deployed, in spite of there being women students?
    2) Why was a woman student arrested after sundown, contrary to law?
    3) Why did the VC not attempt to come out and speak to the students to diffuse the situation?
    4) Why did the VC make baseless allegations and blatant lies in front of the media despite video evidence to the contrary?

    Answer these questions properly to prove you’re not a paid Trinamul troll


    • 1. 37 women police were present on the campus
      2. As per police girls were not detained… And all detained students were released yday
      3. Negotiations were going on between VC and students since 8:30 PM… Around 10 PM he got death threats….. You expect him to come out and get killed?
      4. VC says he also has video footage.

      I am not a troll. I present a balanced argument with both sides of the story and do not blindly subscribe to one theory like what’s happening on social media now!


      • how do u get all this copy paste or by yourself.


      • You just need to read beyond FB statuses….. Newspapers, may be?


      • Umm, you talk as if you were present there at the scene on the 16/17th!!! Sir, I urge you not to mislead people with false information and request you to think for a moment before you start spewing your ‘JU students are naxals/JU students are hooligans’ bullshit again. As per your so called information(from a bunch of lying, useless policemen) girls weren’t detained on that fateful night!! Then please have a read..
        If you still don’t accept the fact that women were molested or that this above article is made up then you’ve no right of being called a MAN. Just imagine if it would’ve been your sister in place of that lady.
        So from where did you arrive to this figure of 37 women police officers being present at the scene? Because it sounds strange as the hundreds of eyewitnesses that night couldn’t locate any of the 37 women police near the scene of the brutality but you seem to know the exact number.
        And regarding the so called video footage with the VC or rather the footage that you claim the VC has(which I believe is total crap, all made up to divert from the actual issue) so you believe that the footage being shared by students that has gone viral over social media is doctored or something? I can provide you here, hours and hours of video footage that proves damning indictment of the Police, the VC as well as the TMC goons called in to beat up people in our campus.
        And to clear the air on another of your baseless claims, there were no teachers gheroaed along with the VC and EC. All staff members, teachers/faculty members left campus as per their usual schedules barring a few who were acting as mediators. And by the way, a large number of teachers/faculty members joined our rally yesterday to show solidarity. And contrary to your claims, the VC wasn’t even touched, if you have any proof regardong the opposite please feel free to share it here.
        A student of JU(And i’m no LEFT extremist nor a hooligan in that sense)


      • You share a link to TOI…. the same newspaper which created history by selling editorial space in India….

        Read today’s ABP/Telegraph (most vocal critics of WB Govt at present)… They at least have both point of views….

        When matters are circumstantial, only one side of the story cannot be the truth… it is always in the middle….

        As for the video, I have seen one… And it looked edited at parts…..

        Liked by 1 person

      • sorry, one of the sentences got broken off.
        I meant, if you can go as far as to claim that the video of police atrocities seemed edited, you should be maintaining a similarly cynical tone about everything, but you’re not. You’re rather cocky about your conscience and about passing your verdict on authentic protest, aren’t you?


      • @Anushka

        I saw the video that was being circulated… it was abruptly cut at places. I wrote what I felt… As for the VC, I have heard that he has submitted a footage to Education Minister. Yesterday the CP also showed a footage at a press conference. I only say things based on what I see and read.


  3. Few examples of ‪#‎hokkolorob‬ ‪#‎peacefulprotests‬ in JU:

    1971: Then VC of Jadavpur University was murdered by some Left Extremist student organisations.

    2010: Then VC Pradip Narayan Ghosh locked up for hours by students for proposing setting up CCTV on campus

    2012: Souvik Bhattacharya locked up for 52 hours. Students demanded dat all charges be dropped against students involved in ragging

    2014: Abhijeet Chakraborty locked up from noon till 2 AM at night. Allegedly death threats given

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I am amused that you think the students were trying to shield the perpetrators of the molestation. Maybe you should get your facts right before wishing everything away. Or in your ‘intellectual’ avatar are you even dismissing reports of the molestation of the girl in the first place? And if I am not in Calcutta to physically join the protests, I will on the social media to extend solidarity. Pity you cannot understand that fact. Police deployment on any campus is wrong and unjustified. If outsiders attacked, then outsiders attacked. If the outsiders had engaged in peaceful discussions, that would be a different story. Pity you have chosen to pick on all the wrong words.

    Liked by 2 people

    • At least read my article properly before judging me… About facts…. obviously since you do not stay in Kolkata, you do not know the facts because you do not get all newspapers outside Cal… check any newspaper in first week of September. Victim of molestation got no support from any quarter…. Only now the students have suddenly become overactive, for obvious reasons.

      Also please explain to me the presence of extreme-leftist politicians like Ashim Chatterjee at JU that night. What were students of other institutes doing there, when the probe is an internal matter of JU?

      Did police actually beat the students up (they were in civil dress) or was it outsider goons… no one knows…

      At least I do not look at an event through a biased prism. I have read and heard and seen both sides of the story and presented my POV.



  5. Tell me Mr.Agnivo Niyogi, is there any kind proof/argument that you require that might help you to reconsider your viewpoint?? If there is kindly let me know, I will be more than happy to guide you to the same…As a self proclaimed aspiring journalist/professional writer/many-other-respectable-things-amongst other, you sure must value logic over blind-belief…However if you say there isn’t any that can sway you from your belief, then I will rest my case…in that case I better not be having a dialogue with self-obsessed-megalomaniacal fanatic…the explanation for my intended actions should be quite clear to you, if you are intent on becoming a serious professional, unlike the thousands of sub-standards that roam the soil….Hope you are what you claim 🙂


    • All I tried to do was present a different version of the story that I came across in the media… I shared that… Is it a crime to have a different perspective? I raised a few questions, and all i get in return is a deluge of abuses…. I guess this is the “revolution” students these days engage in.


      • It is no crime to have different perspective but whatever you think and perceive should have some concrete evidences.
        How do you know that 37 women constables were present there at the time of the crack down?
        And you said, VC can call police to the college as he is in charge, but how do you justify the unidentified plain clothes people entering into the campus and beating the students ?

        VC: Wild students broke up the lights !
        You should go to the campus today and see whether the lights are out or not !
        Then how do you justify the lights going off at situation at the time of crack down ?(The light switches can be operated from inside and students can not access the switches.)

        I am requesting you to listen to this conversation between our respected police of the state and a ‘common man’ and see who are the real goons !

        As you said, ABP news, You should browse through all the videos captured by ABP and see how brutally students were beaten! I hope you will be able to “SEE” and “IDENTIFY” your 37 women police constables !

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sir jee, tussi great ho 👍
        I admire u. Go ahead sir, at least, we have got a man who has got guts to say a spade a spade.
        Agnivo, I have bcm ur fan.


  6. @ rajarshi……just imagine if it would have happened ( gheraoed whole night) with u or ur father. 😉


  7. Agnivo, you might be getting a lot of slack for writing this article, but believe me there are many like me who feel and understand just like the way you have explained. All kudos to you for whatever you’r doing. Keep it up!


  1. Pingback: #‎hokkolorob : Let’s Protest Together! - University Express

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