“Jis ghar mein mai rehta hu wo mera hai,
Mjhse pehle bhi ye ghar kisi ka tha, kis kis ki aankho ka sapna tha,
Wo kal tha,
Iska aaj mera hissa hai!”
This is how the compère disclosed Dr. Rajendra Prasad’s (principal of Ramjas College) sentimental inclination to his college.
With a soothingly energizing musical night, Ramjas centennial celebrations paused at Tuesday evening only to restore its year long euphoria later this month.
The college began its celebration from 17th January marking its 99 years as an eminent established institution in the University of Delhi. When Mr. Gandhi inaugurated the then Ramjas in Daryaganj in the year 1917, he arrived on a tonga; hence providing a historical reference to the future heirs of the college classrooms. Thus, the frosty morning of 18th saw Ramjasites on cycles and tongas, an ode to their heritage and prosperous yet humble history. The event ‘Cyclothon’ on the other hand paid tribute to the Lahore students, admitted in Ramjas after the partition, who apparently began the cycle mounted newspaper vending. To grace the occasion, the Lieutenant Governor of Delhi -Mr. Najeeb Jung – and the retired judge of Supreme Court and an alumnus of Ramjas College – Mr. Mukundakam Sharma – arrived at the venue before noon. The festivities kicked off with Najeeb Jung hoisting the college flag followed by the official launch of the 100 year logo. After Justice Mukundakam’s “I am a Ramjasite and am proud to be one” , in his address to the audience, Najeeb Jung narrated his intimacy with his college friend Dr. Rajendra Prasad and how even though Dr. Prasad will be commemorated after ages, he would always be a rolling stone.
“One of the memorable things about the big universities like Oxford and Cambridge is their age. You guys can also very proudly say that you are a century old”, The Governor further added.
Just after, balloons (with the 100 year logo on each) were gently let go into the sky by the Ramjas brethren. The impeccably embellished college ground then paved the way for the college students to showcase their talent in the fields of dance and fashion. The Ramjas College dance society performed on both western and classical rhythms while the Fashion society revamped the dias with their prepossessing skills. The college had also invited the President Award winning –Jai Karan and party that specializes in its ancestral art of Sapera Been Vaadan.
The following day, the Multi Cuisine Food Plaza was inaugurated with a number of band performances lined for the day. The musical night was started off by Ramjas’s very own band – Rangrez. Rangrez put on their best of Bengali-Punjabi original compositions justifying their own genre of ‘folk-fusion with western elements’. Next came The Revisit Project, an instrumental band with Abhay Sharma playing the dearest compositions of A R Rehman and Madan Mohan on his saxophone. The band led the crowd reminisce the golden era of the 20th century. The tranquilizing performance was shaken by yet another Ramjas’ product called ‘Astitva’- a group of five energetic individuals that compelled the audience to shake their booties to the myriad Bollywood numbers like Kabira and Bang Bang. Even the principal and the faculty couldn’t hold back!
And ofcourse how could we forget the Star Screen award winner of 2016- Papon- who was the star of the evening. Compensating for being stuck in the traffic, Papon performed to his Bollywood hits like Ye Moh Moh Ke Dhaage and Jiyei Kyu clutching to his folklore from Coke Studio on the side. What intrigued the audience was his narrative of each song before he presented it, giving a profound meaning to his folk songs.
With the Ramjas campus lit up in the evening and the audience flaunting their flashlights on their smart phones, the milieu resembled that of fireflies gleaming with joy. With the promise of the best yet to come, until then, HAIL RAMJAS!