I write to hail and call out Dr. Vishnu Bisram for his extraordinary academic achievements, voluminous writings, election polling, and the stupendous role he has played on diaspora affairs (Guyanese, Caribbean and India) and the struggle for free and fair elections (FFE) in Guyana, including that five months’ ordeal for the accurate count of the votes.
I don’t think anyone has written more than he, on the Guyanese diaspora or commenting on Guyanese issues. For years I have been reading the Guyanese media daily and have read his letters as well as the writings of Freddie Kissoon, Ravi Dev, Peeping Tom, and others.
Freddie and Bisram wrote almost daily, exposing the shenanigans relating to the March 2nd elections. I thank KN for its exceptional coverage of the election impasse and keeping the diaspora updated on developments in the country.
While I have long known Dr. Bisram since the early 1980s when he used to visit Trinidad to enlist support for free and fair elections, I was not aware of his long list of academic credentials until the academic conference on indentureship held two weekends ago.
There was a brief sketch of his academic qualification with multiple MA degrees and PhDs.
A few Trinidadians, including myself, had formed an organization in the 1980s to expose human rights violations and champion FFE in Guyana and to champion racial equity.
Our group engaged in correspondences with Dr. Bisram, Dr. Baytoram Ramharack and Vassan Ramracha who had formed a formidable group in the USA that was engaged in rare activism among Caribbean people.
They used to produce voluminous literature on or about Guyana that we use to distribute in Trinidad to aid in the movement against oppression in Guyana. We hosted, and engaged the group in Trinidad whenever they visited for interactions or strategy discussions.
They were altruistic, powerful activists dedicated to improving the lives of their communities in the USA and freedom of Guyana. Their commitment to Guyana and community activism didn’t prevent them from completing post-graduate studies with rare academic distinctions.
I salute Dr. Bisram’s academic feat which is probably unique. As I read in the brief biographical sketch, he earned multiple academic certificates. While many don’t even have an undergraduate college education, and while most of us struggle to complete a Master’s Degree and a PhD, he has multiple MAs and PhDs.
Dr. Bisram is probably the only Caribbean person to have such a well-rounded background in the natural sciences, social sciences and education administration.
Dr. Bisram says his undergraduate degree was in Biochemistry and also completed the majors in Political Science for admission to the MA programme in International Relations. He went on to do MA degrees in IR, Economics, Political Sciences History, Sociology, and Education Administration.
In addition, the biographical dossier says he completed PhD degrees in History, Sociology, and Political Science, and is finished with the course work for the PhD in Economics.
Dr. Bisram taught for over 35 years and served as faculty union representative and in other educational leadership for some 20 years. In addition, he was elected to undergraduate and graduate student governments, serving for a decade.
He held other leadership positions at his educational institution. For his academic and leadership achievements, he was listed twice in “Who Is Who Among Students Among American Colleges and Universities”.
Dr. Bisram’s academic background is most rare among Guyanese, if not among all scholars, making him amply qualified for any variety of assignments to contribute to Guyana and the Caribbean’s development.
I tip my hat in salute to this gentleman for his notable achievements and service to his country in so many aspects that would require volumes of newspapers to list.
Ms Fatimah Mohammed
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