Tuesday, 23 June 2015

A final boarding call to all my fellow AITians.

Back in my own time at AIT, there were largely three kinds of people. Ones who cribbed and whined and whimpered everyday about the somber job prospects, the ever looming placement scenario and the way out in the form of some PG(GATE/CAT/PO/Some new godforsaken exam which a distant relative suggested seeing your plight). Then there was the cohort of the rather sententious sort which believed in gaining all it could gain out of the institute, and then to see what came out of it. Basically they knew they're screwed and they just didn't want to get screwed further by getting into the never ending loop of re-exams and revals. And the third category is hard to define because it included people whom you could see only when there was either an exam or a book distribution ceremony(It looked more like a ceremony because you never saw so many AITians together at any one point of time otherwise!). Now I don't know what proclivities people from the three categories have in regards to the institute, but there is one place we all gotta be this Sunday, the 28th. And that's our good old AIT!  

My batch spent a year at our erstwhile campus in Shakarpur, which was too small to do anything substantial, and then 3 years at the new campus which turned out to be a little too big(Love birds didn't find it a problem because they now had space for assignations. But then we didn't have many love birds back then. All credit to IGIT of course!). We spent the first one year not knowing what to do because we were bamboozled with books and subjects of all sorts so we thought why not! Then we spent the second year realizing that the fourth year is in absolute tatters, and also seeing the one odd guy dancing with joy after converting DCE(No surprise they wanted to name us EDCE. Oh! We still have that plan on the cards I guess.). We spent the first half of third year mentally preparing ourselves for the DSP exam that stared from a 6 months yonder. And the second half was spent crying on our collective tragedy after the exam was over. And the fourth year was part mayhem and part tranquil. Mayhem because every position on offer by every company was to be fought for. And tranquil because only a handful of companies finally visited the campus. In a nutshell, we entered the campus, anxious, confused, perplexed, and largely not knowing what to do. And 4 years later, we took our egress pretty much the same way! 

Now it's been a long time since we all passed out. I'm not sure how well we've done the job of staying in touch with all that has happened at the institute. To set the record straight I haven't even collected my degree certificate yet! But all of a sudden I feel like going back. It's this rather eerie feeling of knowing you may not find many of your pals but you may still end up finding solace in the same sight of the red and cream which is forcing me. Every single batch had a set of harbingers who'd move heaven and hell to take AIT to the hilt(I wasn't one of them and I regret not being one, only today). I still remember my senior Kanhaiya Kumar individually apprising all the rickshaw walas at Shakarpur T point back in 07' that an institute named AIT is situated right inside the polytechnic campus. His efforts may not have born fruit that day because we could manage only a modicum of crowd at Conversance 07' which otherwise was pretty variegated. But just a few days back we had this list featuring AIT as one of top of the table govt run campuses. And that I guess is a testimony to the fact that collectively, and all throughout these years, we have moved and that too in the right direction! 

Things have changed, authorities have evolved, and the TPO is still for the namesake with added glass barriers outside his office so that he could save himself from stone pelting. But I see a lot of change in various other facets. I see culture, I see activity and I see some effervescence which is surreal enough to remind me of my own times. So, at the end of this rather long litany, I can only urge all of you that this Sunday, there is no other place I'll rather be, than to be at the place where we spent a profound 4 years of our life. It doesn't matter if we felt rewarded or reneged, it doesn't matter the name AIT ensues in respect or remorse, and it doesn't matter how and where your life took you post AIT. You spent time in the place and the place shall be happy to have to back for an evanescent afternoon. I'm not sure how many of us will make it and from what all batches, but trust me when I tell you, the sight of the trademark foyer, the rubicund red, the still not so equipped canteen, and the staircase(Now enhanced with Mike's magnum opus) are surely worth relishing again. See you there!