Thursday, December 29, 2005

One day later ...

Let me thank all of you who came by and left a comment on my previous post. It was really touching to see so many messages. In this post, let me add a few more personal impressions.

Yesterday, I wrote about how we all needed to get back to work. Fortunately, today was not declared a holiday, and the campus had a chance to prove that it can spring back to life. Everyone did show up for work, the coffee and tea shops were buzzing with life.

I just saw, on NDTV, Nupur Basu asking several members of our campus community about the attack, and how they reacted. Prof. Sulochana Gadgil reminisced about Vijay Chandru (who co-founded the PicoPeta Simputers and Strand Genomics), and said she was shocked. The other two interviewees, Smita Visweswara [I'm not sure if I got her name right] and Diptiman Sen, said something which may safely be paraphrased as "yes, the attack was a horrible thing; but it's time for us to move on!" Basu also informed the viewers about a high level meeting called by our Director, Prof. Balaram, who told all the participants to put the attack behind and get back to work.

Last night, the reporter from Headline News asked a bunch of our students for their immediate reactions. One of them said [I am paraphrasing here] his first thought was to go out and donate blood. I am not sure if he did, but I do know that several students landed up at the hospitals offering to donate blood. This is another wonderful thing about the student community here; whenever there is a medical emergency, someone takes charge of organizing help. Usually, it is in the form of blood donation, but it could also be help for those who need hospitalization.

The Chief Minister of Karnataka, Mr. Dharam Singh, visited the victims of yesterday's attack at the hospital. It is a nice gesture by itself; it may also help the patients indirectly.

After I wrote the comment (here) about how our coffee shop did some 20% less business today, it occurred to me that this drop in business must be due to tighter security in the campus. There is always a floating population in our campus, with product vendors, job seekers, bookshop visitors, and students coming in to buy forms for various programs, etc. Their number is quite significant. Most of these people would not have been able to enter our campus today because of lack of identification. So, in effect, all the regular IISc-ians were all back at work, but these other people who make up a vital part of our ecosystem didn't show up.

There were tons of police personnel; I would put the number at about 100 near just one entrance this morning! However, later in the day, things were slowly getting back to normalcy even on this front. In the morning, no one could enter the area where the shoot-out took place. By this afternoon, that restriction was gone. I didn't have the stomach to venture into that place, though.

All of which is to say that our campus is back on its feet, and is full of life. A life that's almost normal, and little (just a little) less innocent.


  1. Anonymous said...

    Good to know that the campus is back on its feet. But at the sametime we should not let this pass as just another incident. The culprits should be brought to book.
    I just hope that "life moves on as usual" should be complimented with an attitude of "justice WILL be delivered"--otherwise there's no end to this kind of mindless violence where innocent professors are shot down in full view.