HYDERABAD: This weekend Osmania University will play host to a food festival which is being touted as the “beginning of a revolution.” The Beef Festival to be held at the NRHS hostel on Sunday evening by Dalit students’ associations will see participation from students from different universities in the city. The administration is unwilling to stoke the fires by interfering in the proceedings.
“We have ample time on hand and we will decide on the steps to be taken by tomorrow,” said the public relations officer at Osmania University, Professor BS Rao.
“We decided to conduct the festival in the month of April specifically as it marks the birth anniversaries of our ideologues including Dr BR Ambedkar (April 14), Jyotiba Phule (April 11) and Babu Jagjivan Ram (April 5). Through this festival we want to dissociate the connotation of ‘dirty food’ associated with beef due to Brahminization of our culture,” said Sudarshan, a research scholar who is part of the organizing committee.
Asked about the difficulty of obtaining permission from the university administration, Sudarshan replied, “Every year we have celebrations for Vinayak Chaturthi, Holi and Vanamahotsavam among others. Who grants permissions for these? In order to sensitize students on campus, we are organizing the programme at the hostel premises and not inside the main mess hall or kitchen where we usually cook food.”
He added that the students’ organizations held talks with the circle inspector as well so that the event passes off without a hitch.