Kirori Mal College was steeped in nostalgia on Saturday, when it hosted its Alumni Meet cum fund-raiser for the college auditorium. The college, which boasts of its graduates having found success prominently in the entertainment industry, saw the presence of veteran actor Satish Kaushik (who is also the chairperson of the Alumni Committee of KMC), Sushant Singh of ‘Savdhaan India’ fame, and TV actor Indresh Malik.
Dr. Kumar Amrendra Singh, the convenor of the alumni committee, gave the welcome address, and presented a cheque of Rs 1 lakh as a personal donation to the auditorium renovation fund. Acting Principal Dinesh Khattar, who has been credited for the makeover of the college’s tarnished image in the past few years, said, “I am deeply indebted to Mr. Kaushik for sparing out time from his busy schedule, and constantly helping us in raising the required funds. We were also delighted when Mr. Amitabh Bachchan himself supported us in our initiative and donated Rs 51 lakhs to kickstart the fund-raising drive in a big way. I hope our alumnis too come forward and help their college in every possible way.” Professor Keval Arora, staff advisor to the college theatre society ‘The Players’ and alumnus of the ’86 batch, thanked Mr. Khattar for taking interest in the auditorium renovation, which took a backseat in 2010 owing to administrative issues. He also presented the new layout plan designed for the audi, which will be named the ‘Frank Thakurdas Memorial auditorium’ once completed.
KMC alumnus and lyricist Raj Shekhar, who has penned hit songs like ‘Kitne Dafe Dil Ne Kaha’ and the more recent ‘Ghani Bawri’ from the film ‘Tanu Weds Manu Returns’ also recited a few of his poems.
SATISH ‘CALENDAR’ KAUSHIK
Kaushik got emotional upon remembering his drama teacher, Mr. Thakurdas. “Uncle (as we used to call him affectionately) was our Guru, and it is because of him that I became an actor. He, before my graduation, called me to his house, which in itself was a big thing for me. He asked me what I was going to do after studies. Maine kaha meri na shakal na surat, main toh family ka business karunga. But he told me that I should go for movies and theatre, because when I acted on stage, I was the ultimate good-looking person for him. He motivated me to take up acting as my profession and asked National School of Drama to specially admit me, even when I was on the waiting list. I will never forget him.”
“Jo bhi spontaneity maine films mein dikhaayi hai na, voh sirf Players mein hone ki wajah se hi aayi hai!”- Satish Kaushik
‘HOSTEL WAALON KO ENTRY KYUN NAHI?’
Some students also protested mid-way, shouting slogans because the entry to the meet was strictly on the basis of registration thus they were not being allowed inside. A protester spoke to University Express on condition of anonymity, “Yeh kya naatak hain college waalon ke? Hostel waalon ko kyun nahi hai allowed jaana iss meet mein? Injustice karte hain… Hum toh protest karenge. Hum bhi dekh lete toh kya ho jaata pata nahi. Mehnat hum saare karte hain par end mein ek head apne doston ke saath andar aaraam se chala jaata hai.” However, Saumyajit Bhattacharya, Associate Professor of Economics at KMC and a member of the organising team explained the reason for such strict admissions, “It was a fund-raiser, not a fun event. Everyone had paid for it, including the teachers, and it was free only for the volunteers who had worked. It was the most uncouth behaviour, even after requesting them not to behave like this. Earlier I thought we didn’t need such heavy police protection for the meet, but after such an occurence, their presence was justified. Hostellers were very few in number, some people from outside college were the ones doing this.”
The present police was quick to diffuse the situation.