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Draw a line at the hemline

If the clothes make the man (or woman), then students are in for loads of trouble. The jury is still out about what kind of clothes should be seen on campus — hip and happening or fuddy-duddy and formal. So we leave that choice for you all to make for yourselves. Here is the verdict from some of you about the query: “Should students be allowed to wear whatever they want on campus'”

lOur Constitution guarantees freedom of thought, expression and faith; so why shouldn’t we be allowed to dress the way we want' It will not harm anyone, only boost our confidence.

Amaan Putkijaam

lThe idea of letting students wear whatever they want on campus is utterly unacceptable. If students start wearing ‘trendy’ clothes, colleges will become fashion schools.

Afreen Sayeed

Class XI, Shri Shikshayatan

lWith the spread of western culture, much liberty has been given to students already, especially girls. Anything more would spoil the tradition and cultural fabric of our country. A woman is considered the symbol of purity, and her modesty is one of its vital ingredients. If modesty is lost, the very purpose of being a woman is lost.

Kamil Sayeed

1st Yr, Jogesh Chandra Choudhuri Law College

lStudents should wear their choice of clothes. To stop indecency from creeping into campus, a dress code isn’t enough. So it’s best to give freedom to students to sport whatever they are comfortable in. Students would be deterred from wearing odd clothes by snide remarks from the college crowd.

Aparajita Dasgupta

Asutosh College

lStudents shouldn’t be allowed to wear whatever they want. However modern one may be, certain things will not find favour in an educated society. Students should ensure that their dresses are decent, down-to-earth and not an eyesore!

Somnath Paul

Class XII, Calcutta Boys

lBasic sense should be exercised in choosing one’s attire during this formative period.

Mehreen Saba

Class XII, Ballygunge Shiksha Sadan

lWe all have a right to dress as we please.

Md. Tariq Akhtar

Class VII, Harrow Hall

lThose who dare to bare skin are more advanced and smart. Students should learn to groom themselves. Those who don’t have a good body may object as they may be jealous. It’s a classic case of sour grapes. People may say wearing skimpy clothes provokes eve-teasers, but being covered from head to toe doesn’t help either.

Somenath Ghosh

lWe’ve had enough of people imposing values on us. Heritage is not about what we wear. In school, uniforms are the coolest, but in college, please let students wear whatever they want to. If a girl has the body to carry off a micro-mini and sleeveless tops, let her go ahead!

Indronil Mitra

lSome restriction should be imposed. If students are given full liberty, they might wear revealing and obscene clothes.

Sonia Sayeed

lWhat we wear is an indication of our attitude. So students should be given complete freedom with their sartorial choices. Students should also have the sense to judge what is appropriate attire for college.

Priyanka Aich

IIrd Yr, St Xavier’s College

lStudents should be allowed to wear whatever they want on campus, as long as they don’t cross the line of vulgarity. They should concentrate on what they are studying and not what they are wearing.

Aakash Kamal Misra

Regional Computer Centre, Jadavpur

lThe future of the nation depends on how children are brought up, so special care must be taken. Students should not even wear casual clothes in an educational institution. There must be a special dress code from the primary to the post-graduate level.

V. Kumar

lStudents should devote their attention to studies alone. Fashionable clothes may hamper the classroom ambience.

Subodh Acharya

 

Queries on Keo

What will happen if Keo gets into a black hole' How can you be sure that our far future descendants won’t be hostile to Keo' Do you think that human civilisation can survive another 50,000 years'

During the 60-hour stay in Calcutta, Jean Marc Philippe — creator of the Keo satellite — and his team faced a barrage of questions from the young and the curious of the city. On a mission to promote and popularise the “timeless time machine” amongst GeneratioNext in India, the first stop for the Keo team in town was St Xavier’s College on Friday.

After a short presentation in the auditorium, the floor was thrown open for a Q&A session, which lasted a little over an hour. “It was great fun to field their questions. Almost all of them came up with really intelligent queries,” said the scientist-turned-artist.

The mood swung from the muted to the full-throated, as the clock ticked away. It started as a quizzical probe by a tentative 200-plus audience, comprising both teachers and students. But half way into the discussion, the students started believing in the “humanistic dream” of communicating with the future and participated with vigour. The session ended with students queuing up for autographs of Philippe and his team. “Initially, I thought it would be nothing but a crazy idea from the western world. But now I want to be part of the Keo movement and send in a message to the people of 52003,” said Poushali Sahu, a first-year student of computer science.

 

Teens for peace

Three Messengers of Peace have been discovered in the teen world of Calcutta, and they are all headed for Mumbai. The regional winners of the Teen of the Year talent search, held over the weekend at Don Bosco, will, as ambassadors of “peace and harmony”, compete in the national finals at Mumbai next month.

Organised by Teenager magazine, in association with Don Bosco Youth Services, 42 entries were sent in for the contest open to 14-to-19-year olds. Of them, 31 entries from schools including Don Bosco Park Circus and Siliguri, Assembly of God Church, St Thomas’ Boys School, St Helen’s School, Loreto House, Loreto Sealdah and Shri Ram Narayan Singh High School, were selected on the basis of their credentials and their essays on their “Dream India”.

Amberleen Periera, the 16-year-old student of Loreto, Elliot Road, last year’s runner-up, was active behind the scenes. She was the first to think of bringing the seven-year-old event to the city. Said Father Alfonso, editor, Teenager: “Ours was the first youth magazine in India and is now the longest surviving. This is not a contest, but a forum to share ideas.” The event was inaugurated by Father Manipadam, provincial delegate for youth affairs and past pupils at Don Bosco Nitika.

A quiz was followed by group discussions that saw heated talks on the topic “Neither aggression nor extremism can solve world problems”. Piyush Sahewala spoke of having a common global language to reduce diversity and improve communication. Another student suggested entrance exams for those entering Indian politics.

The news event saw participants representing various cities as newsreaders. Games tested reflexes, stamina and teamwork. Lengthy interviews threw tricky questions to candidates and an extempore with topics like “Why are most Indian students favouring the greener pastures abroad'” and “Is sex education a must for school-going students'”, followed. As the evening drew to a close, the crew was divided into groups to present a skit with a social message before they prepared for a late-night camp.

The field was reduced to 15 participants for the grand finale at Don Bosco Park Circus auditorium. The guys and girls got the chance to sing a jingle with Usha Uthup before they were handed certificates. The talent round followed, with a “value pageantry” round close on its heels, where the line-up selected what they felt was the most important value, like tolerance and cleanliness, depicting it in their own way.

Dance performances by the host school teams added colour, after which the 10 best contestants went to the next round, where they were grilled by the judges. “Why is it that the number of women at the top of the ladder is so low'” and “If there was one thing you could change about this world, what would it be'” were some of the teasers. The best five further progressed to answer the question “How would you be an effective messenger of peace”. Though winning was not the object, victors had to be chosen. Finally, Maurya Mondal, Parag Mohanty and Chiraag Mehta were chosen for the finals in a few weeks.

— Harsh Vardhan Sonthalia

St Xavier’s College

 

One year & counting

Teacher’s Day was double bonanza for students of Heritage Institute of Technology. It was our first anniversary, too. The mood was festive right from the morning, with the seminar hall decked up to welcome the guests — higher education minister Satyasadhan Chakraborty, deputy secretary Manotosh Biswas, and director of technical education Amalendu Basu.

The minister, in his inaugural address, stressed the need for quality education at all levels and expressed satisfaction at the state-of-the-art facilities being provided by the institute. The day started off with a welcome address by institute director Prof. B. B. Paira. He highlighted the outstanding academic performances of the first batch of students in the university exam. Three students obtained a grade point average above nine on a scale of 10 and all 256 secured more than 60 per cent. The institute awarded medals to students with outstanding academic performance. Faculty members were also rewarded with medals. A seminar on the Role of Teachers in Nation Building was organised under the auspices of the Society for National Awareness. Later, a cultural programme was organised by the students and the teachers. The programme included recitation, a lively skit, vocal music and a group performance on instrumental music.

— Sayantan Mitra

2nd Year, Computer Science & Engg Dept, Heritage Institute of Technology

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