Monday, February 21, 2011

52. Vice is virtuous!

The institution of `vice chancellor' is one amongst multitudes of failed institutions in the public domain. Weakened on account of inept leadership, the office of vice chancellor in most universities has become a `big head' of opportunism, wickedness, corruption and politics! With a prefix `vice' attached to it, what better could have been expected? If nothing, it stands true to its prefix.

Appearing in English in the 13th century, `vice' is a habit considered immoral, depraved and/or degrading. Derived from the Latin word vitium, synonyms for vice include fault, sin, iniquity and infirmity. In more minor usage, vice can refer to a fault, a defect or merely a bad habit. No qualms therefore if the vice chancellors of the present genre fail to deliver. That is what they have been chosen for!

During a recent dinner hosted by the vice chancellor of a central university, guests were treated to cocktails by the generous host. Down to few pegs, the host wondered why one guest was without his share of a drink. `So, you don't have such vices,' quipped the vice chancellor. Much before the guest could react, the host went further, `no wonder, you are not a vice chancellor!'.