The Price of omnibenevolence

I did not do any good to them, then why should they abuse me (Ami to unar kono bhalo korini, to amar ninda keno korche) ? Had Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar been alive today, he would have found NISSAT in a predicament parallel to his.

In many a fora, NISSAT baiting is a favourite past time. NISSAT should do this ... or should do that... Usually, the most vocal ones are those who do not even know what NISSAT is all about. Nor their expressions are out of their deepest concern for NISSAT. The addiction to hear one's own voice and to project one's own interests forces them to say so. Peculiarly—nay, naturally, they hardly ever talk about their own responsibilities or contributions towards NISSAT per se, apart from making suggestions and recommendations or finding out where NISSAT has failed to deliver the goods and services.

There is another set of professionals and institutions who view NISSAT as a mere funding body, a soulless and therefore a brainless entity whose only claim to existence is to adopt all the proposals they submit—be these good, bad or indifferent. Unfortunately, even some of the major beneficiaries of NISSAT suffer from such a myopia. NISSAT contributions to the development of S&T information systems therefore range from germination of ideas, programme design including preparing and educating potential implementors to the provision of required mundane inputs like manpower, machines and money to meet other needs. Out of humility, NISSAT has not publicized its contributions by way of ideas or mundane support. Some project leaders conveniently forget about these inputs. Truly speaking, NISSAT has created few Frankensteins in the process of pursuing such omnibenevolent approach.

Worst still is the case of the species which claim NISSAT's ideas as its own when a success is in sight, but brand these as NISSAT's follies in case they fail. The royal road to success is to make very tall claims on achievements for which their personal contribution is minuscule! Promises, offers, or commitments are made just to be forgotten. The modus operandi is very simple. Shedding all scruples, they feed people in high places with disinformation and promote them to talk against their own benefactors. They even write critical articles to sound authentic, and present wrong information. They also prevail upon the not-too-discerning Editors to publish the trash. A step beyond this is to use institutional funds to host lunch / dinner / goodwill meets and enlist [ensure] support. No wonder such people succeed in manoeuvring themselves into local / national / international avenues.

Of course, NISSAT is aware of such professionals but it still continues to practise openness and transparency in its operations. After all, for the misadventures of a few why the majority should suffer?

- A Lahiri