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Students lead the way

Not many know that the celebrations were a result of the initiative taken by CSIIT students. RENUKA VIJAY KUMAR finds out

PHOTO: G. KRISHNASWAMY

'MASTI KI PATSHALA' Students of CSIIT, who helped put together Secunderabad-200 festival

The year 2006 will be best remembered as the 200th year of Secunderabad, but what is perhaps a lesser known fact is that a group of young students who initiated these celebrations. The students of the Church of South India Institute of Technology, School of Architecture and Planning(CSIIT) began promoting this event as early as January-February this year. The CSIIT is of the five architecture colleges in the city. The students explain that the event was first brought to their notice by one of their visiting professors and conservation architects, Vasanta Sobha Turaga, but it were the students who took full initiative and involved themselves with the event. The students wanted to give the people of Secunderabad and Hyderabad, an opportunity to know their city better and found this to be the perfect platform.

Once the importance of the year was brought to the notice of the government, they officially announced the Secunderabad-200 festival. The outline of the Clock Tower that was used as the logo of the festival, was first conceived by the students of CSIIT and used on the posters they brought out to announce 200 years of Secunderabad and when they threw open the competitions to students across all fields.

Students from all five batchesof the Bachelors of Architecture course were involved in the activities. Thhe core team consists of only 5 members, but as many as 100 students and many faculty members were involved in various events. The students split themselves into groups to handle each event and a fundraising team took care of raising funds.The Secunderabad Run, which was the biggest event they handled, was mainly co-coordinated by the outgoing final year students. Even though they have passed out of the college, their juniors and teachers insist that these students played a pivotal role too. Almost 10,000 people enrolled to participate in the run The run and the seminars were held during the same period as the weeklong celebrations that were conducted by the Government. The seminars that were conducted at the college premises had prominence residents of Secunderabad talking about the area. An exhibition of photographs by Anuradha Reddy and Mohd Safiullah was also put together by the students.

Since they have a busy course schedule, the students were not allowed to work on the project during college hours. All of them voluntarily participated and planned the activities after-hours over a span of six months! The students themselves designed the brochures, posters, leaflets, invitations and fundraising pamphlets. The celebrations have not yet ended and plans to hold a carnival and inter-collegiate competitions are on the anvil as well. "A book on the event is being planned. The celebrations and competitions will be on till early next year," they say in unison.

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