March 2016 \ News \ COLUMN: AMB. MALAY MISHRA
Like pebbles in the pond

By Malay Mishra

If Rohit Vemula saw the forebodings of a gathering storm over India’s young horizon in his untimely death, he could have well foreseen his alter ego in Kanhaiya Kumar. And now in his death Rohit has awakened the country like nobody else could. When in a packed press conference Kanhaiya pronounced the magic words, Rohit is my icon, not Afzal, it was as if Vemula’s soul was redeemed. Babasaheb, the common thread running between the two youths, could have sharply polarized the society into the haves and the havenots, the so-called nationalists and and the anti-nationals. Of course Kanhaiya was categorical in saying that JNU has never been an abode for anti-nationals, he was speaking the truth as events played out over the last few days have dramatically revealed.

Watching the twenty nine year old JNUSU President, hailing from one of the most poverty stricken corners of Bharat, deliver his speech with his innuendos, barbs, wits, and periodic brilliance, I was struck by his awesome oratory, and behind that the power of his words. Surely his speech has gone down to the wire, to every nook and corner of the world, let alone India. Indeed a masterpiece in communication skills by someone who until yesterday was a vitual nobody but today has his name all over.