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Statement of Solidarity for Dr. Maroona Murmu from the Faculty of Presidency University


We, the undersigned teachers of Presidency University, Kolkata, are shocked to know about the recent attacks on Dr. Maroona Murmu, Associate Professor of History, Jadavpur University, Kolkata.

dr maroon murmu

 Dr. Murmu is an accomplished scholar, an activist, and an intellectual. She is an important voice of our time insofar as she regularly writes and speaks about the rights and plights of the Adivasi community. She is a unique personality to have graced the academia with her rare ability to combine scholarship with activism.

We are aware that the academic space in West Bengal, as elsewhere in the country, is, even today, predominantly Brahminical. Students and teachers hailing from SC, ST, and OBC communities regularly face discrimination due to their caste and tribal backgrounds. The suicides of Chuni Kotal, Rohith Vemula, and Payal Tadvi amply demonstrate the fatal consequences of such discrimination. As various instances from academic institutions from across the country suggest, not only students but teachers from such communities also face victimization regularly.We are also aware that only a tiny percentage of such instances of discrimination make it to the news.

Given the historical exclusion of tribal communities from the mainstream Indian society, Dr. Murmu's impeccable academic success is a matter of pride for all of us. If an accomplished academician like her is targeted due to her identity, then we shudder to think of the depth of suffering of the bulk of Adivasi people who struggle to be part of our academic space.

We believe that Dr. Murmu, like any other concerned teacher, has absolute freedom in expressing her opinion about holding examinations during the COVID-19 crisis. We also believe that to insult her, on the basis of her said opinion, by referring to her as a "Murmu," a "Santhal," a worthless/ meritless idiot (jogyotaheen opodartho), and a "quota professor" is an unforgivable offence.

Although 85% of India's population belong to the SC, ST,and OBC communities, they have, even today, a rather marginal representation in our academic space. Since caste/class/tribe-based affirmative action is a constitutional policy meant to resolve this problem of underrepresentation, we believe that an awareness of law and statistics is a prerequisite for any critique of "reservation." However, those who have been abusing Dr. Murmu on the pretext of "reservation" seem to be uninformed. Given such ignorance, the unconstitutional attacks on her tribal status, we are afraid, are nothing but the manifestation of a deep-rooted Brahminical prejudice against the marginalized and the underprivileged.

We, therefore, strongly and unequivocally condemn the attacks on and trolling of Dr. Maroona Murmu by Ms. Paromita Ghosh of Bethune College and her supporters. We resolve to uphold the rights of the Adivasi community and extend our unconditional support and solidarity to Dr. Murmu in these trying times.

Signatories

1. Pradip Basu, Professor, Department of Political Science
2. Shanta Dutta, Professor, Department of English
3. Sreemati Mukherjee, Professor, Department of Performing Arts
4. Nilanjan Dasgupta, Professor, Department of Geology
5. Tanuja Majumdar, Professor, Department of Hindi
6. Mirdu Rai, Professor, Department of History
7. Soumendu Chatterjee, Professor, Department of Geography
8. Zakir Husain, Professor, Department of Economics
9. Mousumi Dutta, Professor, Department of Economics
10. Santi Saren, Assistant Professor, Department of Bengali
11. Anjoy Majhi, Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry
12. Koena Ghosh, Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry
13. Supravat Bagli, Associate Professor, Department of Economics
14. Prithviraj Guha, Assistant Professor, Department of Economics
15. Saswatee Mukherjee, Assistant Professor, Department of Economics
16. Purna Banerjee, Associate Professor, Department of English
17. Mousumi Mandal, Assistatnt Professor, Department of English
18. Priyanka Das, Assistant Professor, Department of English
19. Mahitosh Mandal, Assistant Professor, Department of English
20. Kalyan Kumar Das, Assistant Professor, Department of English
21. Md Monirul Islam, Assistant Professor, Department of English
22. Debanjana Nayek, Assistant Professor, Department of English
23. Anirban Ray, Assistant Professor, Department of English
24. Dhiraj Barman, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
25. Mery Biswas, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
26. Nasim Aktar, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
27. Shibthakur Hembram, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
28. Priyank Patel, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
29. Suranjana Banerji, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
30. Subhajit Das, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
31. Debarshi Guin, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
32. Saurav Chakraborty, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
33. Krishna Gopal Ghosh, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
34. Sanjib Biswas, Assistant Professor, Department of Geology
35. Supriyo Kumar Das, Assistant Professor, Department of Geology
36. Mary Hansda, Assistant Professor, Department of Hindi
37. Anindya Gangopadhyay, Assistant Professor, Department of Hindi
38. Deepa Khakha, Assistant Professor, Department of History
39. Kishan Harijan, Assistant Professor, Department of History
40. Navras J. Aafreedi, Assistant Professor, Department of History
41. Oyndrila Sarkar, Assistant Professor, Department of History
42. Gourav Lama, Assistant Professor, Department of History
43. Sajjad Alam Rizvi, Assistant Professor, Department of History
44. Soumen Mukherjee, Assistant Professor, Department of History
45. Subhas Khajanchi, Assistant Professor, Department of Mathematics
46. Niladri Roy, Assistant Professor, Department of Performing Arts
47. Debaroti Chakraborty, Assistant Professor, Department of Performing Arts
48. A. P. Rajaram, Assistant Professor, Department of Performing Arts
49. Bidyut Mondal, Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy
50. Manoranjan Prasad Sing, Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy
51. Mainak Pal, Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy
52. Manoj Kumar Panda, Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy
53. Ngaineilam Haokip, Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy
54. Suchetana Chatterjee, Assistant Professor, Department of Physics
55. Atanu Rajak, Assistant Professor, Department of Physics
56. Ritaban Chatterjee, Assistant Professor, Department of Physics
57. Debasish Datta, Assistant Professor, Department of Physics
58. Abdus Samad Gayen, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science
59. Madhura Damle, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science
60. Garima Dhabhai, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science
61. Satyabrat Sinha, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science
62. Rajat Roy, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science
63. Tanwir Arshed, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science
64. Madhuchanda Ghosh, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science
65. Zaad Mahmood, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science
66. Sumita Saha, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology
67. Souvik Mondal, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
68. Antara Ray, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
69. Hia Sen, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
70. Sukanya Sarbadhikary, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
71. Upal Chakrabarti, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
72. Nabamita Das, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
73. Suvrata Chowdhary, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
74. Thondup Gyatsho Amdo Bhutia, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
75. Shampa Sarkar, Assistant Professor, Department of Life Sciences
76. Nabendu Biswas, Assistant Professor, Department of Life Sciences
77. Susmita Mondal, Assistant Professor, Department of Life Sciences
78. Subhabrata Paul, Assistant Professor, School of Biotechnology
79. Abdulla Al Masum, Assistant Professor, School of Biotechnology
80. Chandrama Mukherjee, Assistant Professor, School of Biotechnology
81. Paramita Saha, Assistant Professor, School of Biotechnology
82. Saurav De, Assistant Professor, Department of Statistics

~~~

[Via Mahitosh Mandal]

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