BPHC conducted its literary fest, Verba Maximus on 30th January and 1st February. It saw a very high number of participants, surpassing most expectations. Having 12 events besides the informals and divided into four categories, a variety of opportunities were given to literary enthusiasts. The first day had a stand-up comedy act by Azeem Banatvala and Angad Singh Ranyal from East India Comedy (EIC), a group which has an established presence in the realm of humour and satire. The funny bone of the audience nearly became exhausted after falling victim to persistent laughter, only to be disappointed during the last few minutes of the show, just when it had gotten really good, when a false fire alarm went off. Azeem took advantage of the situation and improvised on that. We’re burning down? Might as well get a few laughs out of it.
Arena, the celebrated sports festival of our institute saw a humungous turnout from ridiculously fit people from various colleges. The fest saw the introduction of a newly constructed cricket field on campus. The Arena brand, embed with the Sports unto Salvation tagline was officially declared open by the Hero (Harsha Aechuri) and Heroine (Shrivani Pandiya), as they were referred to by the Director, Prof. V S Rao. While the Arts and Deco Department worked on the giant chess pieces outside SAC, all the other departments also worked on full swing for the fest to make BPHC a gorgeous host. The jewel to the crown was the football team BITS A, which went on to win by a whopping goal difference of 16 (with just 1 goal against). In other news, the basketball team of BPHC seemed to have lost momentum and both the girls’ and boys’ team ended up losing to VNR VJIET. The heartthrob star player of the team was heard declaring that he would avenge this defeat with his one more year left on campus: isn’t that what sport is all about?
Swine Flu Vaccination
The epidemic recently intensified through out India, with Hyderabad registering the highest fraction of cases, leading to a few deaths. Some people took an initiative and a vaccination program was arranged in a tie-up with Apollo Hospitals. A large number of lazy BITSians were delighted by the presence of the vaccine at their doorstop. But it was cancelled later, and it was said that the college was reluctant to give the necessary logistics for conducting the programme inside the campus. So, it remains to be seen how many people actually go all the way to the city for a poke in the thigh.
Theft appears to be becoming increasingly frequent in the boys hostels. A couple of freshmen lost their laptops, some had experienced mobiles getting stolen, and some also reported that money had been stolen from their room after they left the door open for a few minutes. The issue was on the brink of explosion when a FIR was filed with the local police station. But later, fate intervened and it turned out that the laptops had been hidden at random locations across the junior boys’ hostel. The culprits were never found.
Most of the people who knew half-baked info about him finally found out that he was the Indian Nobel Prize winner, and that he had extensively worked for child rights. He came with his wife and gave a talk in Pilani campus’ auditorium. It was transmitted to all three campuses using the Tele-conference facility. All went with high expectations and even the director turned up, but something caused the speakers and video to malfunction, probably due to cell phone usage inside F-101. This ruined the experience because nothing he said was clear and audible, what we could actually see in the display TV was the TV in Pilani displaying the talk and not the podium. It made the almost saturated room virtually empty, with a handful of students who bore the brunt of it.
Embryo’s hosted event, Quintessential Questioning, a telepresence talk by Joshua Engel who has written over 7.5K answers on Quora witnessed a huge turnout. Joshua Engel was a mad programmer, a physicist, loved to bake wedding cakes, took swing dancing lessons, and more or less had this voracious spirit to learn something new with every passing day. He proved to be an inspiration to all our haphazard, indecisive minds which didn’t really know what to really do in our lives. Joshua suggests we do everything we please and somehow trick the world into believing that this could be our job. His witty advice to anyone feeling down in life is to try rock climbing, he says that all your worries will evaporate away, he swears by it. After all, not falling from 20 feet would be the greater concern.
SU carves its way to the everyday BITSian’s heart
The way to a BITSian’s heart has always been through the tummy. Being a relatively new establishment, our campus has always ended up getting the shorter end of the chopstick. Food has never been able to manifest itself as the materialistic guilty pleasure on campus, but the Student Union is trying to change that. 99 Dosa varieties in a tiny little van shall arrive next to Amul every week, and boy oh boy, they have delivered. The aforementioned Dosa Place has been on campus for the last two weeks and it’s the new socializing spot where treat demands are redeemed. The SU has also asked us to ‘watch out’ for more such food endeavours, and that makes us truly happy.
The college community believes in an integrated campus culture and Sanskriti is the incarnation of this fundamental belief. Sanskriti is the platform for people to show where they come from, and is an attempt to retain it even in a world away from home. All the ethnic associations performed including a few faculty members whose indomitable spirit whilst singing a Malayali song was truly commendable. Modern day Ramayan: Version BPHC, slapstick edition, was crafted with campus-indigenous references. There was singing, dancing, drama and each assoc had their own videos about their respective state.