Posts Tagged ‘SIMC UG’


Before Partition, when my mother was in Lahore, she taught at the Hans Raj Mahila Maha Vidyalaya, where there was a student called Uma Sood, who was very popular because of her looks. When Partition was announced, my mother managed to get out of Lahore and came to work in Meerut, from where she would frequently dash off to Delhi to meet cousins and friends.

Years later when she was strolling around Connaught Place in Delhi, she saw a huge crowd outside one of the shops and asked the reason. She heard that “famous film actor Kamini Kaushal” was in the shop and everyone was waiting to catch a glimpse of her and maybe get an autograph. My mother too stood in the line waiting to see Ms Kaushal. When the film star came out of the shop, she was rushing towards her car, when she caught sight of my mother.

She rushed up to her, hugged her and asked, “Ms. Menon what are you doing here?”

Always the one for a quick repartee, my mother wisecracked, “Waiting to see Kamini Kaushal, who was Uma Sood when I was teaching her in Lahore.” They both had a good laugh and chatted for a few minutes before Ms Kaushal left and my mother continued her walkabout around CP.

I was reminded of this incident when I saw the calendar designed by the SIMC 2012 UG students, sitting at my desk. After seeing their handiwork, I know this for sure, that this is a really talented bunch of kids – not just these two, but the entire bunch. I am sure they’ll make a success of their lives. I have seen them perform on stage and they are quite simply amazing. And the ones who are taking it easy should kick themselves hard and clamber aboard, lest they get left!

Sometimes, I wonder why I take a personal interest in their future. But then I know it’s probably because, along with the SIMC 2011 PG batch, to which I taught a few subjects, this SIMC 2012 UG batch is one I took the entire journalism course with. Sometimes people and situations grow on you and you love it. Just like some people you meet who want to make you throw up, and the bitching and bullshit you encounter every day and desperately try to avoid.

The wonderful thing about kids (whether they are your own or someone else’s) is that they can make you forget everything – pain, troubles, pressures – and can overwhelm you with their affection, refreshing candour and enthusiasm. Whenever I meet students at the various campuses the warmth and affection from students overwhelms me. Like the use of the word f**k. As kids when we used the word, we ensured there were there were no elders within earshot. Today, even when I’m around, it rolls off the tongues of my students so easily, that it doesn’t seem like an expletive anymore. It makes me wonder what the fuss was all about earlier!

Once students from one of the institutes took me to the disco and I think they were surprised to see this greybeard shake a leg for a good part of three hours! On one occasion, another one of them screamed when she saw me approaching, ran up and hugged me! When I mentioned the incident to a 23-year-old student, she said, if someone her age had done that, there would have been a book written on it! Thank the Lord, for uncomplicated 18 year-olds!

So, here are a few pages of the desk calendar conceptualised and designed by the talented Shaan and Jay Dantara, with help from Mehernaz Jila and Nandan Sharalaya. The students who posed for the desk calendar are Urvi Bhanushali, Vibhuti Happa, Sanyukta Iyer, Trisha Satra, Akanksha Arya, Apoorva Sridhar, Nikita Gupta, Tejaswini Naik, Shaan, Pragya Singh and Ananditaa Iyer Singh.

The calendar sits on my desk at Lavale, autographed by Shaan and Jay. I just wish the others who graced each month had signed each page too!

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