Sunday, September 11, 2011

KTWV 12 Issue 1: A time for KTWV to come back?

Kooler Talk (Web Version) is BACK.

It is sad that I restart Kooler Talk (Web Version) at this time of great problems within our

I have to now stand up and have my say. That is what Kooler Talk (Web Version) has always done during the last decade and half. Unfortunately, for the first time I have to be vicious - quite against the natural grain of my character.

It has been over a year since I made a blog entry. As the old cliche states "Much water has flowed under the bridge".

In my old age, dementia has been slowly setting in. Although past events are crystal clear in my mind, much of what I have written during the past decade, or even the past week, has faded from my memory. (A test at the Lumosity web site revealed that it the disassociation of the various faculties, eyesight, hearing, the sense of smell and taste, that causes this form of dementia. It is not really the traditional form of dementia.)

I visited my blogs to read some of my past scribblings. (During my Bharat Darshan in 2009, I was only blogging at my main blog "Jacob's Blog", which presently remains locked. Much of what I wrote during that period, which included a visit to the College and attending the Founders Day event, is at the moment still unaccessible to Stephanians.)

What a shock I got! 

I seem to have written, with uncanny accuracy, what I see happening today in our alumni and in the College. I takes no credit for this. It was something which was obvious to anyone who could read the lines - not between the lines. I never make people to read between the lines.

I had written:

"The college is in the media limelight for all the wrong reasons".

Let me be crystal clear.

The common factor "for ALL the wrong reasons", then and now, has been and is Valson Thambu!

I am very happy at the positive and constructive things the alumni Facebook GROUPS (Stephanians and Laal Sitara) are doing. I am also thrilled at the Groups on LinkedIn, and many blogs run by Stephanians.

Yet, there is room for more involvement and improvement.

All the young Stephanian alumni at the helm of these various presentations of their take about our College are very sincere in what they are doing. They have the great respect for our alma mater and want to do something positive. I do hope they will resolve their personal differences and work towards a common goal.

The only person who is scared of their activity has to be one with a guilty conscience. That person feels that his "authority" will be usurped. His real intent would stand exposed.

I sort of laid out part of the goal I saw for the alumni in one of my blog entries last year. (Remember, I have been online for 15 years!!! I have said a lot during that time.)
    "I would like to state some of the obvious:

      We should have the finest faculty in all branches we intend to teach in our learned institution.
      We should have the brightest and best students in the College.
      We should have professional management to run the College, both the teaching, the education and the premises.
      We should optimise all the aspects of running an educational institution.
      We should modernise in keeping with similar institutions around the world.
      We should involve alumni who have experience in managing a national education institution.
      We should change our focus to handle the problems that face the India of tomorrow.
      We should stop the reservation policy for anybody which is only detrimental to all communities in the long run.
I note that one leading contributor recently posted in one of the Facebook Groups about being open about what one says. I have always refused to publish details of subject matter sent to me with an anonymous label.

Let us go back a few years when we had the ad hoc appointment of Valson Thambu as the Principal of our College.

During the short time he was there he tried to change the secularity of the college into a fiefdom for a narrow band of Christians. He brought great disrepute to our alma mater!

I am born a Christian but value all the good of all religions.

Our college was not set up just for Christians. Read 61er Tony Jaitly's history of our College. You will see the first four students admitted to our College were Hindus and the fifth a Muslim!

Then Valson Thambu was removed. We hoped an experienced Administrator would be appointed!

While the process of re-appointment of the Prtincipal was going on, back Valson Thambu was, with a "doctorate" in theology from an Agricultural University! Do read an earlier blog entry of mine on this subject.

Despite the excellent credentials of many of the candidates to head our College, Valson Thambu was again appointed as Principal in a very clandestine manner. The collusion was more than obvious, again bringing great disrepute to our alma mater.

Then, there was a huge public war between the Bishop (the Chairman of our College) and Valson Thambu as they battled to get control of the funds of the College. 

This unseemly washing of dirty linen in public was screamed across the headlines of many national newspapers.

I witnessed all this sitting here close to the Arctic Circle, 7000 km away from Delhi. I wrote to many Stephanian alumni to DO SOMETHING!

The College was again the headlines for all the wrong reasons. 

And now we have the alumni scandal, where Valson Thambu has taken a "cease and desist" approach to something creative, constructive and positive done by a section of the alumni.


What has this alumni association done to degrade the name of our alma mater? Why this dramatic over-reaction?

Who gave Valson Thambu ANY authority over my right as an alumni to discriminate  or accept the good of two alumni groups? Certainly not me!

If one reads his 8 page "cease and desist" letter - it would be easy to put the name of Valson Thambu to all the accusations he has leveled against what he calls the "Imitator" alumni association!

It is Valson Thambu who is the Imitator Principal!

If people want to do good for our alumni, why attack them publicly with such a ridiculous liturgy rather than talk and sort things out in a Stephanian way.

Although I belong to both the Groups on Facebook, neither Group has asked me for any money. Nor have they made any demands on me, except for my time and my good wishes.

As I said in one earlier posting, Valson Thambu is past the maximum level set by the Peter Principle.

Conflict diverts attention from the real situation, his legitimacy as the Principal of our College. 

Valson Thambu has no management skill that I am aware of. His actions from Day 1 when he took over as the Principal proves my point. His doctorate is highly questionable. The doctorate relates to a subject not even taught in our College (or was so when I last enquired).

There very "cease and desist" letter signed by him proves beyond a shadow of doubt his lack of competency to head our alma mater!

So on what grounds was he appointed to head our College? 

His knowledge of the English language or a hidden agenda?

I hope all the wonderful members of the alumni will get together and make sure that we have a harmonious relationship amongst ourselves and not be at the beck and call of the dubious holder of the title of the Principal of our College.

Valson Thambu is all what our various previous Principals were not - a very divisive personality. And as I have said before - there is not one Christian bone in his body. 

I will be back on line with my traditionally nostalgic reminiscences of OUR College. Stay tuned.

My approach is quite different from the wonderful SPICE or any other College related group.

And your inputs, criticisms, brickbats, are always welcome.

I am so happy that new SPICE is out. It is a great read. It is a wonderful professional alumni presentation - and Valson Thambu wants to kill this creativity? WHY? 

(The original SPICEs were way after my time in College. I understand they were controversial and racy!)

Kooler Talk (Web Version) will remain what it has always been - MY personal take on life in and after my wonderful experience in St. Stephen's College, Delhi.

Welcome back to all our regular readers. And welcome to our many new readers.

1 comment:

John Dayal said...

Good to have Kooler talk back
Honestly acerbic, and vice versa
God bless