Friday, December 30, 2005

Amidst uneasy calm, life goes on in IISc

Amidst uneasy calm, life goes on in IISc
New Indian Express

BANGALORE: Uneasy calm prevailed in Indian Institute of Science, a day after the terrorist attack on the J N Tata auditorium.

Life carried on as usual in the campus. Only, it resembled a reservation settlement. Nobody, other than IISc students and those connected with the institute, were allowed in.

Curious onlookers on motorcycles and cars stopped at the IISc gates, to get a glimpse of the location, where the terrorist attack took place.

Though a normal day wore on, despite the terror of the previous night, all the entry points into the sprawling campus in Sadashiv Nagar were heavily guarded.

The gates were shut and were opened once in a while, just long enough for a vehicle to pass through. Even courier delivery boys were stopped at the gates and asked to come the next day.

In the cafeteria, students mingled around as usual. They had been given directions that research must not be affected on account of the incident.

Director of IISc, Prof.P Balaram had called a meeting of the Head of Departments in the morning. He briefed them on the security arrangements that have been put into place and assured them that there was no need to panic.

“Research has to go on, and it is going on smoothly,'' Prof.Balaram told reporters. A few students, who were eyewitnesses to the terror of the night before, recounted their experiences.

“Life is normal here,'' said N Nagaraja Rao, Secretary of the Bangalore Chapter of the Operational Research Society of India (ORSI), which had organised the conference the terrorists disrupted.

He said that IISc was a world apart from its surroundings and the people were busy with their work.

“IISc is like a temple. This (the attack) is a kind of aberration,'' he said. Rao, a High Court lawyer, narrowly missed the terrorist's bullets on Wednesday.

He had parked his car outside the Satish Dhawan auditorium and had rushed inside to set a few things in order for the ORSI-AGM. Two minutes later, his car windows were smashed by bullets.

The conference was called off and most of the delegates have left, he said.


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