Avik Chattopadhyay: Brand of the Year – the Indian Student

27 Dec,2019

By Avik Chattopadhyay


This is that time of the year when the best of the best are recognised. Person of the Year. Film of the Year. Tweet of the Year. Instagram pic of the Year. And so on. Hence I thought of taking this opportunity to announce my “Brand of the Year”.


The Indian Student.

Yes, the Indian student, who has actually helped keep the fabric of this nation more or less unharmed and intact through the year. On various occasions. On various issues. Social. Ecological. Economic. Behavioural. Political. Cultural. Some issues complex, some very fundamental.


As a brand, they have stayed true to their core purpose.

As a brand, they have been on course with their promise to deliver.


The student is the future of any country. The student stands for all that is good, aspirational and ambitious about society. That is not necessarily bound down by convention and ritual but makes the nation proud.


Because I care beyond myself

I care about the environment and will take action to reverse damage and preserve what is left. I will make festivals less polluted. I will take to public transport to reduce congestion.


I care for the unique yet fragile concept of “India” that is only 70 odd years old. I will take to the streets if needed to preserve the national fabric.


I care for the unwanted and underprivileged. I will go out of my social bindings to stand up for them.


I care not because I am affected, but because this land I inhabit and this flag I salute is affected. And if I do not care for another, no other shall care for me when I need support.


Because I have no hidden agenda

I am typically not driven by agendas and mala fide intentions at this stage of my life. Yes I do have peers who have joined youth wings and student wings of various political parties but they are only a handful. I am still idealistic. I am still inquisitive. I am still a bundle of energy. I still have time on my hands. I am not yet ‘comfortably numb’. I am not yet bound by stereotypes of colour, faith, flags and forms. I still think I can walk over and hand out a rose to a policeman across the barrier. I still think I can upload a video of an unruly lawmaker and shame him / her before the millions. I still think I can share a ‘bread pakoda’ and a ‘chai’ with a peer who completely differs in thought and action. I still think I can bring change…positive, powerful, progressive and for all.


Because I am the future

I experiment every new trend as nothing is beyond bounds.


I will redefine consumerism by experiencing more than merely owning.


I will redefine freedom of speech and expression by making myself heard.


I will embrace causes that transcend culture, gender, race and religion.


I will be my own check and balance as I move forward, into a new decade of challenges and opportunities.


I will be the India that the world will one day truly admire.


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