This post is long overdue.I have been thinking of this since the day I wrote the introduction to the REM.When I wrote that I realized there is so much more that defined our batch,that made us different from the ones earlier.When seniors go back to NIT and find changes,it would have been we who began them.
I could not write all that in the REM,for they were my personal observations,and I was writing then for all the four hundred odd people in our batch,something that will always stay with me.
To start with I saw different shades of life in each of my four years at NIT.And I interacted with three batches of seniors and juniors.Some of my observations might seem biased,and indeed they may be,but I write this not from my opinions of individuals but from the overall outlook and mentality of the people.Indeed maybe three years from now my juniors might feel the same.
It began with ragging.While nothing can justify slapping somebody in cold blood,we took it,simply because we could do nothing about it other than destroy someone's career.The fact that at the end of that ordeal I have discovered some admirable people does nothing to justify that,though I have no bitter feelings towards the same now.As we went along to second year,third year and so forth,we managed to cut down the incidents quite a bit.Now when we finally passed out there was hardly the same fear and fright associated with it.
There is also the whole idea of seniority.It was always taken as a potential weapon to win all battles,and to inflate bruised egos.You were never given the dignity due to you,and even after freshie party and everything,you had to remember that the seniors are always right.That changed completely when we became seniors ourselves and that is the greatest contribution we made,in my opinion.
As juniors ,the worst jobs always go to you.Nothing exemplified this more than cleaning up the food,which stinks up to high heavens,after the annual puja.The seniors would watch while the first years did all the dirty work.That made our blood boil.We had decided that we wouldnt make our juniors do what we ourselves wouldnt.When I waded into the job of carrying and dumping the leftovers,I realised for myself that I had earned their respect only then,not before.What I say is a general trend that was there in our batch.
Can there be anything more humiliating as a third year than getting slapped because you booed a senior during a cricket match?Or having to hide out in seniors hostels for the night because the losing senior team is out to get your goat for showing the middle finger during an on-the-pitch sledging incident?
This was what the Ruby Cup was till last year.Juniors never dared to applaud a shot for fear that the other team would beat them up.And as juniors you can never win a match.While you would hear the choicest abuses directed at you on the field,God save you if you retaliate!But we made sure things changed.The juniors(second and third years ) were in full force to watch the matches.Final years,including me drew boos,words,rebukes and all that happens in the field of play.But we took it like men,and not take the easy way out like earlier years.The result was the fairest Ruby Cup tournament ever,and not won by the final years!
Another refreshing change has been the interaction between boys and girls.The comments and taunts that I was so used to hearing when a junior is now a thing of the past.We have treated our juniors as equals,and the result has percolated down to all the batches now.Now when we see first years being rude and insolent,sometimes we wonder.Was it right?Why dont we fix them now?The temptation is there.But then hell,he has got the right to be rude hasnt he?
So my friends,let them be.We have ushered in a different and may I add,better culture into the college.Lets not change that.As final years we have earned our respect,and not demanded it.That will never change.
There are other accomplishments of ours that are well documented,and I would rather not go into those.This is more important.
When I was standing in Ashutosh Hall in Calcutta,in 2001,and there were 3 mechanical seats vacant in NIT Trichy,I didnt take it.Most of you know this.I have wondered hard and long in retrospect why I didnt.Perhaps it was because it wasnt meant to be.And so it was that at the same place the next year,I chose NIT Trichy.And what a difference its made to me.Whats a year in this whole lifetime anyway?I would have been much the loser even if I had gained a year.
This is dedicated to all of us-boys and girls of the Class of 2006.I am proud to be one of you,for I believe,truly,that we have made a difference.....
Cheers to the spirit of NIT Trichy...
Cheers to the Class of 2006...