This has reference to the article ‘IIT Controversy: Why Ignore Dogras’ Cultural Identity?’ by KB Jandial. The author has rightly pointed out that the duo of Saraf and Gaur should have avoided the unnecessary controversy over the ceremonial dress on the occasion of the first convocation of IIT Jammu. Many people of Jammu had protested and Dr Jitendra Singh, the proud Dogra had also advised them to adopt only the local attire for the occasion. Fortunately, the duo had a precedent of Central University, Jammu before them and as good Govt functionaries, they should have followed it and avoided embroiling themselves in the controversy. It was quite absurd on their part in the first instance that they had chosen of all the, Pakol cap which adorned/ adorns the heads of world hated terrorists Osama Bin Laden and Hafiz Sayeed. The cap reminds the world of these bigoted Shaitans so no sensible person would have gone out for it. It may be pointed out that whenever the British officers used to be sent on new posting, they would study the history and geography and culture and language of the area where they were destined to go so that they might not deviate from the local traditions and customs while performing their duties and in the process injure the sentiments of the people of that area. But our own officers out of either lack of interest to acquire knowledge of the local customs and culture or out of sheer arrogance conveniently forget to keep in mind the propensity of the people of their area of duty. The Government should avoid to post such fellows on sensitive assignments as they put the Government also in an embarrassing position.
Channi Himmat, Jammu
Apropos Rajeev Kumar Nagotra’s interesting article :’A Pheran it was’ which appeared in the Daily Excelsior of January 15,2021, I agree it has not ‘ruffled the local sensitivities’ in spite of the timely intervention of Dr Jitendra Singh, MoS, PMO. Yes, it forced them to abandon the Afgan cap, which was earlier selected as the head-gear. The entire drama is intriguing. One would like to investigate whose brain-child this unique plan was. Mr Nagotra misses the irony of the final selection. The pherans that the IITJ students finally wore were embroidered around neck, border and sleeves. No male wears an embroidered Pheran. It is only females, women and girls, that wear embroidered pherans. Did the selectors want to express some symbolic meaning about Jammuites ?
P L Waguzari
H No. 4/A