London based academics talk about freedom of speech at KU

By Insha Latief
SRINAGAR: A university must allow space for research, discussions and thinking around all kinds of ideas in a society, Professor Dibyesh Anand, head department of politics and international relations at Westminster University said during an interaction with Kashmir University students.
“A university must produce critical thinking of all kinds. Critical thinking includes critiquing those who are in power, not only powers in nation terms and state terms but power in society terms as well,” Anand said.
He favoured freedom of speech but it should not allow anyone to hurt the sentiments of weak and oppressed. “Freedom of speech does not allow you to hurt those who are weak. It challenges those who are powerful. Freedom of speech is about individual challenging the ruler of state,” he said.
Dibyesh talked about the bureaucratic structure of university and bureaucratized form of knowledge leading to certain complexities. He talked about the different intellectual approaches in a society.
Dr Nitasha Kaul, a Kashmiri-origin author and academ also spoke on the event organized by Hameeda Nayeema, head of the English department at Kashmir University. Koul spoke about her debut novel, Residue.
Asked about her intentions to write a novel Koul said politics and poetry should be twin strand of “our existential DNA.” “Whether I write fiction or non-fiction, they are two things of relating history or time. I want to give voice to a stereotype that you are burdened with,” she said.
Nitasha also spoke about great thinkers, writers and feminism.  She also talked about the idea of freedom and identity of women.