Sunday, October 16, 2011

IIM and the fear of acceptance

We had a screening of the movie 'Memories in March' today starring Rituparno Ghosh, Deepti Naval, Raima Sen. The movie shows the grief of the mother when she finds out that her son dies in a car accident. But the story takes a different angle after she finds out that her son was gay and had a secret lover (Rituparno Ghosh)

The movie was not very good. But i felt really sad when people in the auditorium were laughing every time a reference to the love between the son and Rituparno came. If students of an IIM laugh at this idea, how long will it take for Indians to accept this concept? It raises serious questions in my mind if the future managers will be able to be tolerant to the sexual orientation of their colleagues and not let this come in the way of their decision making process.

Why do we have a difficulty in accepting it and what is so funny about it? Do we make fun of physically disabled people? They were born in a different way and it was not their fault. This is not different from the case of a gay man/woman. It is how the person is from within. So what is the harm in professing that love to a person of the same sex? It is wrong to ostracize them and treat them as mental people. The movie deals with this idea in a deft manner when Rituparno asks the mother - "What is more difficult for you to accept? Is it that your son is dead and you will never see him again or that he was gay?" The mother feels betrayed when she finds out that her son did not reveal it to her, but the sole reason for the son to hide his identity was his fear of acceptance from the society.

It is a change that Indians should come to terms with soon. And we can only start by bringing the change from within.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The F Word, Diary post dated November 15, 2008

A great man once said that there are 3 phases in a man’s life:

1. When he believes in Santa Claus

2. When he does not believe in Santa Claus and

3. When he is Santa Claus

In a similar classification, life in divided into several phases, College life coming out as one of the most prominent one. And with every phase comes its own special lingo. According to my observation, the F word is used very frequently, and before you let your imagination run wild, here are a few of the F Words I am talking about:

1. Fundoo – Think of a guy who knows his fundamentals right. Add a pinch of overconfidence and laziness and voila, you have your very own Fundoo.

2. Frustoo – He is the person who will go to his room and decode whatever you said into binary or hexadecimal form (just for practice). If you ask him “Whats up dude?”, he will look up and say “Sky!”. But he is the Mr. Dependable of your class, because he is the one from whom you can copy your assignments.

3. Faltoo - There are 3 kinds of people in this world: those who can count and those who can’t. These are the third kind; and believe me, a major portion of college students fall in this category. But we are proud of it; because ignorance is bliss. If someone asks you if you studied Fluid Mechanics in college, all you say is “I flunked it. But mind you, I would have got more than 99% if I had tried!”

4. Friend - A good friend is one who tells you to study well, but a best friend is one who stands outside the examination room and shouts
“Abbe kuch aa raha hai ya aur chits fekuuuu”

In this category, you get another F Word: Fun. Whether you are getting bumps for taking a girl out for valentine or whether you were caught drawing the professor’s face and writing ‘Pig Head’ on it when in class, the fun is never complete without a friend. It could be a girl or a boy, but making them a bakra when the professor catches you is the best part.

5. Fame - A lot of college life depends on fame. And there are several ways of getting it. There is a king for almost everything here. You could be ‘Zulmi – The king of ragging’ or ‘Topper – The king of frustus’ (a.k.a Mr. Frusteshwar or Mr. Chintamani).

Coming to the recent college happenings, the Golden Jubilee Celebrations for our college (for completion of 50 years since formation) will start in full force from Oct 10th, the college foundation day. Mr. Rama Lingaraju, CEO of Satyam Computers is expected to grace the inaugural event. Next in line is the annual college Fest ‘Technozion’ ( which will be held in conjunction with Vyas from Oct 17th to 19th, 2008. Student volunteers are busy making the preparations for the event, which will have several luminaries giving guest lectures including Mr. S. Gopalakrishnan, co-founder of Infosys Technologies Limited, Mr. Dilip Chhabria, the automobile magnate and Mr. Anthony James Leggett, the 2003 Physics Nobel prize winner.

The administration has granted the students a week long leave for Dussehra after their excruciating mid-sem exams. The 1000 room block is nearing completion and will probably come in use in the next semester. The 3rd mess has been turned into a vegetarian mess to cater to the first year students. The placement season has been good this year. Due to the recession, recruitment for software companies has decreased, but the number of core companies has increased phenomenally. Mechanical Engineering undisputedly has had the best placement season this year.

Before I sign off, I would like to give some tips for living a happy life to all the troubled souls out there. I suggest you take my advice, because I don’t use it anyways.

1. Need a loan from a friend? Borrow money from a pessimist, they don't expect it back.

2. Need an excuse to avoid sports class? Just say “I get enough exercise just pushing my luck”.

3. In an interview: Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else.

4. While seeing a comedy movie: He who laughs last thinks slowest.

5. In a viva-voce: If you can't convince them, confuse them.

6. After joining job: Don't be irreplaceable; if you can't be replaced, you can't be promoted.

7. Problem with your computer memory? 160 GB too less? Double your drive space. Delete Windows!

So, Au revoir. Sayonara. Ciao. Asta La Vista. Auf Wiedersehen. Adios. Tot ziens. And for those of you who don’t understand other languages, Goodbye!.

Campus rePlacements, Diary post dated June 22, 2008

Life never ceases to change. Some say that change is good while some abhor it. The same applies to life at college. You come in as the ‘scared to death’ freshman, grow to be the uncooked and arrogant sophomore, get serious in 3rd year and celebrate your existence in the final year. But the only moment cherished the most remains the time when you enter your final year. You are the ‘replacements’ for your uncouth, uncivilized seniors and have to live up to their ‘living-on-the-edge’ repertoire. The 2005-2009 batch is the one out to live that carefree life now and I am the proud member of this batch. It’s the time when you forget what ‘Library’ means, it’s the time when you stretch your budget to the xtreme and it’s the time when your motto is: “Live College Life King Size” (proverb by a great man called Aditya Maira)

India has left its footprint in every format of cricket, be it Test, one-day or T20. And it’s our turn now. The 5 days of serious study for an exam and its faster version of one-day batting are passé. We now follow the T20 pattern: 20 min of study before the xam. The only thing left to figure out is if the college authorities allow cheer girls on the dais during exam hours. (Strictly for boosting our morale, of course). Here’s our new dictionary of Exam terms authored by the luminaries of the ISO-20-20 certified company: ‘4th year rebels’:

Movies related to college life:
Exam - Kalyug
Classes - Kabhi Kabhi
Viva - Encounter
Exam Hall - Chamber of Secrets
Examiner - Mrityudata
Course - Godzilla
Paper Correction - Andha Kaanoon
Person beside u in exam hall - Koi Mil Gaya/Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna
Exam Time - Quyamat Se Quyamat Tak
Question Paper - Paheli
Answer Paper - Kora Kaagaz
Marks - Asambhav
Cheating - Aksar
Last Exam - Independence Day
Result - Sadma
Pass - Ajooba/Chamatkar
Fail - Devdas
Vacations - Masti
Supplementary - Aakhri Raasta

Well, the college hasn’t been all that dormant either. T & P coordinator Mr. Venugopal has successfully established the official website for college placements: . My motto during my placement will be ‘Faz impression is lasht impreshan’. 3rd year students bagged internships from Schlumberger, L&T, Microsoft, Yahoo, IBM, Cisco, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, Indian Air Force and several others. Placements are due to start on 6th of July. While some students clinched projects in IIT’s and IIIT, Hyd, the others are busy belling the CAT and trying to overcome the 1500’s barrier in GRE. College will reopen with renewed spirits on 21st of July and hopefully, the renovation of the Admin building will be complete by then. While the final year students are vying for rooms in 14th block, the construction of the 1000-room block is nearing completion. Registration on the first day has finally become computerized (Thank God!) and negotiations regarding the inclusion of 2 new branches of engg (Ceramic Engg and Mining Engg) are in the pipeline. Several new M.Tech courses have also been proposed. After the success of Technozion’08, Technozion 2 will be organized in the month of September. Before signing off, here’s a cool SMS I received recently:

School Life vs. College Life:

School: 1 colored dress for 100 days
College: 100 colored dresses for 1 day

School: 2 notebooks for 1 subject (min)
College: 1 notebook for all subjects

School: Most frequent letter - leave letter
College: Most frequent letter - love letter

That’s all folks! Wish me luck for my placements and do leave some tips to ace the interviews. Till we meet next time, Alvida!,

ECE shows its FRUSTUness, Diary post dated February 15, 2008

The month of January was coming to an end. Everybody had gotten comfortable with their new teachers and subjects. But comfort is synonymous with danger. Because, a good comfort level is a clear indication that exams are soon approaching. Nevertheless, the students had a golden opportunity to spend the last few days of Jan adventurously before the exams started. Jan 25th -27th were inevitably poised to provide a feast of knowledge and thrill in the college techfest called Technozion’08. The event was inaugurated in the presence of ISRO chair Mr. Madhavan Nair and was a host to a plethora of other events. But the cherry in the cake was the inspiring lecture by former President Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam. The Audi was reverberating with roars of applause as he finished his lecture with an interactive Q and A session. But hold your guns, how can such a magnanimous event end without a controversy? You’re right. It can’t. A trifle misunderstanding due to an unintentional argument was enough to spark off a mass fight between the M. Tech’s and U.P, Bihar during the cultural night. Things began to settle only after the director intervened. On the whole, it was worth the watch as some latecomers mistook the fight to be a skit among the events planned for the night.

Soon after the fest, people had to dust their books, remove the cobwebs and start studying for the mid-sems. The global elective subject was shifted from 4-2 to 3-2 (because everybody bunks the classes in 4th year). CSE Department offered ERP (Enterprise Resource and Planning), the lectures of which were taken by professionals from Accenture. This automatically meant that the classes had to be in tune with their feasibility. As a result, the students had classes from 8 am to 6 pm non-stop on Sat and Sun. This was bad news for the Hyderabadis who vanish from the college the moment a weekend approached.

Nowadays, ECE is coming back in form just like our Indian cricket team. It is living up to its reputation of being FRUSTU. I personally have had tormenting experiences this sem. First, Ravi Kishore, Asst Prof of ECE catches me in DL (Digital Library) while checking my mail. And then, there is this new rule that cell phones are banned in college. It comes everyday in the notice board and everyday people laugh at it becoz no one really cares. But ECE does. And when I was writing my global elective exam in the ECE department, I was one of the unfortunate souls who got caught with a cell phone. And as a result, I had to pay a fine of Rs. 100. Well, maybe my Vaastu is not in good terms with the ECE department nowadays.

For those in ECE, cheating in exams is really tough. But branches like Chemical Engg are experts at it. (Some of us dream of becoming cheating consultants in future). Writing on legs and hands, getting chits to the hall is passé. Now, people have become more creative. Some make Micro-Xerox and staple the booklet inside the jeans. Some put a sheet of paper on the answer book and emboss the answers on the answer book before taking them to the exam hall. This way, only the student can see the carving at a specific angle of light and no one else! Who said we cannot innovate?

Another thing to cheer about for all the ‘couples’ in our college is the newly opened Amul outlet near the Guest house. It’s a good change for people who have got bored of ‘Swiss Bakery’ and Karim Bhai.

As the semester is nearing completion, most 3rd years have secured summer projects to keep themselves busy for the vacations. Some of the elite few have got intern opportunities from companies like Morgan Stanley, Voltas, Cisco, IBM, L & T and Accenture, while some have applied for off-campus interns in Microsoft, Texas Instruments, Yahoo etc. Owing to the dollar slump, most of the students have their fingers crossed as the placement season approaches.

Before I sign off, here are the top 3 comedy lines in college life:
1. Don’t Disturb, I want to study

2. No class. Lets go to library

And the best one is:
3. Sir……I have a doubt!!!

The above are the results of a survey taken without taking anyone’s honest viewpoint into consideration and the surveyors are not responsible to answer to anyone’s claim that the results have been fabricated

Life At NITW-Seasons in the Sun, Diary post dated November 27,2007

The end-semester examinations have come to an end and the students can now breathe a sigh of relief after the excruciating and tiring night-outs. But as you look beyond the materialistic freedom attained for a month of winter hols, you realize that the semester passed has been a rather eventful one. A jolt to the system was felt when our mid-semester exams got postponed by 2 days because one of the mess ‘saru’s’ assaulted a civil prof because of a dispute over the tender for 6th mess. The student council, as usual, cherishing the moment went on a riot till the director’s office and the director kept saying “We thank you for your co-operation”. Ironically, the students were trying their best to start what Gandhi calls a non-cooperation movement to get the exams postponed as much as possible. The second jhatka came when one of the junior’s complained of raging and TV9 (a famous broadcasting company in AP) came to innocently cover the issue while students gathered around the camera innocently to get their faces on TV. An eventful sem as I said.

The students have now found a new way to while-away their time and avoid studying. They are now watching seasons of famous sitcoms available with friends on the LAN. Prison Break, Scrubs, Friends, Heroes, My name is Earl, How I met your Mother, Dragon Ballz, Naruto, Life as we know it, Alias, Criminal Minds, you name it, we’ve seen it. The students complete the seasons faster than the seasons change outside. To add to the fun and frolic, the students went on Industrial tours to places like NTPC, Ramagundam and Nagarjuna Sagar hydel power plant. Of course, the top of the lot was the tour to the esteemed ISRO, Sriharikota for all the IEEE members. A strange initiative has been taken up by the director. We are now supposed to write exams in evaluation books rather than answer sheets. The funda is that if the student feels he has been awarded a wrong grade, all the teacher needs to do is show him his book. (It dosen’t make sense though, as the same could be done with answer sheets). Anyways, for us, its like when our parents ask for our answer sheets, we say “Mummy, is baar director ne bola no wasting paper, so no answer sheets, so no exams”

A new theorem also has been proposed by us:
Equation 1: Study = Don’t fail
Equation 2: Don’t study = Fail

Add Eq. 1 and Eq. 2
Study + Don’t Study = Fail + Don’t fail
Study (1 + Don’t) = Fail (1 + Don’t)
Thus, Study = Fail.
So don’t study.
Hence proved.

In other words, thousands of yesterdays are gone, millions of tomorrow’s will come, but the hopes are still alive in the students that ‘Tomorrow, I’ll definitely start studying’.

The dates for our techfest Technozion and Vyas have been announced and the students are busy planning the events. You can check out what you might expect from the fest by clicking on these links: and So for all the readers, its Sayonara for now

Life At NITW-A Bitter Sweet Experience: Diary Post dated August 15, 2007

National Institutes of Technology (NITs) are claimed to be one of the best technical hubs in India. Well, atleast the 1st day of college doesn’t prove that coz it is this day when the students are tormented to death.

The student is firstly greeted by a long line where he is expected to pay his mess dues followed by a separate line merely to get a no-dues stamp. And that’s not all, its like ‘buy 2, get 1 free’. Because you have to once again buckle-up your guts to stand in yet another tunnel-long line only to know what your room number is, and mind-you, no proxy’s allowed here. Just when this comedy circus seems to come to an end, you’ve gotta think again. You then have to run around the entire institute in search of Hameed, the man with the magic key to your room. And finally, after the bitter-sweet treasure hunt, you have to bribe him with a sweet smile on your face and act as if he is your biggest saviour. The Sharukh Khan of Main Hoon Na or the Hrithik Roshan of Krishh. Well, this marathon-run seems completely senseless to me because, “Hello!! Has anyone heard of the computer?”

But when you look back, you realize that it’s not all that bad as it looks. Coz you get to catch-up with your old friends, see the crazy hairstyles they’ve grown in the hols, say Salaam to Karim Bhai, you even get to exercise your lazy bones with all the running around you have to do in the campus.

As for the day when class-work begins, it’s inevitable that every student attends the classes, not because he is the serious-types, but because it is crucial for him to do a fool-proof research on the lecturer’s attitude. His aim is to find out if the lecturer will be giving an attendance shortage at the end of the sem or not. If his attitude is lite-lo kinds, that’s going to be the last class the student attends before the end-exams.

As for the developments in the college, students have started getting LAN connectivity in their rooms in addition to Internet at snail’s-speed. But, with all the proxy sites of Orkut blocked, students have no another option but to surf technical info. The college also organized a grand-fest for the ’78 to ’82 batch students who had completed their 25 years of graduation. The sullen-mood was jived-up with a musical night followed by a DJ-night to celebrate the momentous occasion. Dr. Anand Raj, a prof in the Civil Engineering department has been chosen to be the next Chief Warden. Honestly, he is a master of simplicity. He comes to class on a cycle. People call him Jumanji because he badly needs a haircut. But as they say, ‘looks can be deceptive’. Because, his stern discipline and attitude has led to a tremendous decrease in ragging and you can be sure that he is not a guy you would want to mess with. The grapevine tells us that we may have Technozion2, a sequel to the tech-fest conducted earlier in Feb this year followed by Vyas’07, the annual IEEE tech-fest. The latest branch of our college is Bio-Tech Engineering, whose department was inaugurated recently by the director.

With all the student clubs releasing their deadlines for applications, while companies vying to recruit students for jobs and internships, all I can say is that ‘The journey has just begun’.

Life at NITW - Diary Post dated June 15, 2007

National Institute of Technology, Warangal (formerly known as REC, Warangal) will begin the new academic year on 18th of July with the same excitement and enigma as every other year. The juniors will of course make an entry later on around 1st of August.

Over the past 50 years, there have been numerous developments and improvements. However, the Profs haven’t changed a bit. Their first class is always the same. They give their intros, blabber about their subject and leave. A rare few manage to take our intros and act as if they are recording our names and faces into their unquestionable memory. The very next class, you would see them addressing the kids as ‘the blue shirt guy’, ‘that specs boy’ or sometimes just ‘you there’. But first classes are always fun. Once, we got a new lecturer for EMI (Measurements) who was a total faltoo and looked so young that when he entered the class, we were unsure whether to stand or not. We couldn’t stop laughing when he started his intro. He said: “First only first class, then also laugh, Why? First all stage fear and I talk about very importance. If I see you laugh again, I will throw the door out of you”.

Such eloquent speakers are not rare in other colleges. The other day when I was catching up with my long lost friends, I was baffled by some of the statements they encountered at college.

One said: “Yesterday, one boy connect ammeter in parallel, supply, pointer go, he beat, no come back, he beat again, but no come back, I sent out”

“Take a 5 cm. wire of any length”.

“Why are you late? Answer Yes or No”.

Then there was: “I have a daughter studying in X, she is a girl”.

And: “No! Don’t bend on table. If shock, who responsible?”

Such comic characters are often the star attractions for every one to discuss at the end of the day.

The hostels have seen a few developments. 13th block (Rajendra Prasad Hall) opposite H-office is allocated to the juniors while 14th block (behind the stadium) is for 4th years. While the 4th years and LH blocks have free net in their room, the OFC’s (Optical Fibre Cables) have been laid in the other blocks & we will hopefully have net by 3-1. Admin building has been under construction for the past 2 years and isn’t expected to be completed within the next 2 years. Y V Rao, a former NIT Suratkal prof. is our new director. Rumour has it that he is expected to become the chief of AICTE. Last year he scared the entire insti by giving attendance shortage to almost half the students. The students begged the director, organized protests & after 3 distressing days, he made the cut-off from 80% to 60%. The people below 50 got supple’s and Summer Quarter while those between 60 to 70 were fined heavily.

Despite suspension of numerous students every year, chiefu hasn’t been able to curb ragging completely though it has reduced considerably. Despite the efforts, unscrupulous and atrocious activities continue to prevail at the cafte, the lake, the lawn & hostel at odd hours until everybody gets freshers. The latest get-together spot is the NESCAFE outlet put-up opposite the Audi. Students enjoy coffee while listening to jazzy music coming from SAC.

Unlike the previous years, this time we had a single tech fest common to all branches i.e. Technozion’07. This was quickly followed by the rocking informal fest Spring Spree’07. It was a star adorned event with bands like Vayu, Stiff neck Syndrome & Indian Idol finalist Abhay revving-up the nights. Another major event in the last sem was the Open-Source Workshop organized by the IEEE student branch committee which saw lecturers by eminent personalities from Google, Yahoo, Sun Microsystems, Caritor and many more. The Literary & Debating Club was in full form with a number of events lined back to back with IGNOBEL’06 standing out as their best. NITW also showed its caliber in sports by clinching the Intramurals in Badminton and Volleyball. It also hosted the Pete-Transformers Cup which was a huge success.

While Karim Bhai in the juice centre & the elite Swiss Bakery still attract masses, Kalinga & Kanishka remain in business with mess food not improving a bit. ECE still has all its frustu Profs while CSE still enjoys 5 subjects per sem, the least among all branches. And how can anyone forget Beggars day, the best day for all final years who dress-up in rags and go begging for trash from anyone and everyone who comes in their sight.

With students gearing up for campus placements, NITW is abuzz with summer projects, intern opportunities and mock-aptis.

Despite all the ups and downs students face here, I am sure every student leaving the college will be proud of NITW as his past 4 years would undoubtedly be the most eventful period of his life.