ABES Engineering College Ghaziabad maintains an affiliation with Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Technical University. The emblem of the university features a Sanskrit maxim: “Yogaḥ karmasu kaushalam” (योगः कर्मसु कौशलम), signifying “Yoga is the mastery of one’s actions” or “Yoga is the proficiency in one’s work.” This dictum underscores that yoga, as elucidated in venerable texts such as the Bhagavad Gita and other classical treatises, transcends being solely a physical or spiritual pursuit. It encompasses the astute and contemplative execution of one’s undertakings. It underscores the significance of amalgamating the physical and spiritual facets of existence to attain equilibrium and fulfilment. The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), which endorses ABES Engineering College for conferring technical degrees, employs the same slogan.
In India, irrespective of whether it is an educational institution, a corporate entity, or the judiciary, Sanskrit mottos are incorporated into logos or nomenclature. This practice is not solely due to the fact that 80% of India’s populace is Hindu, but is equally a consequence of the opulent cultural heritage, customs, traditions, and festivals that have been deeply entrenched in the nation’s history since the inception of the oldest Vedic texts.
“Jai Shree Ram” (“Hail Shree Ram”) is a ubiquitous and prevalent salutation among the majority of the Hindu populace. However, ABES Engineering College lately gained notoriety due to a startling video that gained traction on social media. The college hosted a cultural event, during which a participant greeted the audience with “Jai Shree Ram.” In response, a particular teacher exhibited considerable vexation at the slogan and castigated the students in an impolite manner, eventually instructing the participant to vacate the premises. Subsequently, in a separate video, the same teacher sought to rationalise her conduct by asserting that “this is a cultural event, not a platform for slogans.”
“जय श्री राम” सांस्कृतिक नहीं??
ABES कॉलेज गाजियाबाद
ने की घोसड़ा..@myogiadityanath @UPCMOffice
कृपया ध्यान दें कि किस प्रकार ग़ज़िआबाद के एक जाने माने कॉलेज में भगवान श्री राम कों अपमानित किया जा रहा है व इस शब्द के बोलने पर आपत्ति जताई जताकर माहौल कों सांप्रदायिक बनाने की… pic.twitter.com/qX58u5G2mo
— Vivek Pandey 🇮🇳 (@INDVivekPandey_) October 20, 2023
This situation raises the query: within the context of the cultural event’s nomenclature, students are permitted to engage in dance routines characterized by risqué attire and suggestive poses, practices that the college endorses and applauds. In stark contrast, a mere salutation to the audience with the deeply rooted expression “Jai Shree Ram” is met with intolerance.
It is imperative to remember that even in the contemporary era, prior to the initiation of construction projects, institutions, medical facilities, colleges, and schools, as well as the commencement of any form of event, Hindu religious rituals are conducted.
The faculty made the claim that the student had an argument with her, and the reason she asked him to leave the stage. However, in the video, it is clear that, firstly, people from the audience greeted the participant with the “Jai Shree Ram” slogan, and the participant replied in kind. Furthermore, in the same video, it can be seen that the faculty called the student, started scolding him, and used the term “get out” twice, compelling him to leave the stage with no other option.
It is clearly seen that the audience in ABES college cultural program greeted “Jai Shri Ram” initially and he responded with the same.
But, when he was disrespected by the professor & asked to leave, no one from audience said a word. pic.twitter.com/xPcrdsiPuu
— Anshul Saxena (@AskAnshul) October 20, 2023
The director of the institution stated in a news brief that he has formed a committee to investigate the matter. He mentioned that within 24 hours, the committee would provide its observations. Based on these observations, the college management will take appropriate action. Furthermore, he added that no action would be taken against any students of the institution. In another news segment, he announced that, following the committee’s recommendations, two faculty members, identified as a professor named Mamata Gautam and Shweta Sharma, have been suspended temporarily.
Protests both within and beyond the campus have been ignited by numerous Hindu spiritual leaders and organizations, aimed at expressing their discontent with the college management and faculty. A faculty member has exacerbated the situation by disseminating a video through her social media platform in which she endeavors to rationalize her statements rather than offering an apology. Furthermore, she has issued a veiled threat, asserting her intent to pursue legal action against individuals disseminating purportedly false information about her.
Amid concerns that her remarks may have inadvertently hurt Hindu sentiments, Mamta Gautam seeks to safeguard herself against potential legal actions by presenting herself as a true Sanatani. pic.twitter.com/GlM8TdBK7E
— Isrg Rajan (@IsrgRajan) October 23, 2023
In the aforementioned video, she seeks to assert her identity as a Sanatani and a Brahman by birth. Additionally, she contends that neither she, her family, nor the college align themselves with any anti-Hindu sentiments or ideologies. Paradoxically, this pronouncement has only served to inflame an already contentious situation, as it has been widely misconstrued and misinterpreted by the public.
The protesters are calling for the arrest and legal repercussions against both her and the college. Certain politicians have issued comments indicating that, should the college fail to take suitable action, they may contemplate the revocation of the institution’s license.