Srijan R. Shetty bio photo

Srijan R. Shetty

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The appeal of metro cities is alluring yet specious. Truth be told, when you graduate, you won’t remember whether you got that obligatory GPL on your birthday in a posh nightclub or in your dainty room; at the end of the day, it would be the people kicking your ass and their sadistic laughter that’ll haunt you for the rest of your mortal life. But that being said, Kanpur fulfills my checklist of all the must haves for a decent city: major motion pictures being released on time, good restaurants, a disco and a mall. (where you can see a bunch of Carrera S’s hanging around!)

I’m sure that you’d all be wondering what do we do in our free time if we don’t have recourse to the simple pleasures of a metro city. The answer is quite simple - we don’t have free time. IIT Kanpur is always bustling with activity, be it a live screening of a major matche or a movie screening in our badass Open Air Theater (or OAT in IITK parlance), inter hall competitions, club activities, preparations for college festivals (Antaragni, Techkriti, Udghosh), open mics, karaokes, acoustic nights, musical extravaganzas, dance performances, dramatics events and what not. The campus has a plethora of activities to cater to all kinds of people, from the adrenaline junkie to the lazy couch potato.

If someone were to ask me what truly sets IIT Kanpur apart, my answer would be the freedom that the students are given and the trust that the authorities have in us. Starting from the very basic, there is no concept of an “in-time” in hostels, allowing students to pursue moonshots in different technical clubs or just goof around in the campus (or SAC, which has a food court which stays open until 4 am in the morning). There is no internet ban - which by the by, works seamlessly - and neither is our consumption stinted. The messes and canteens come under the purview of the Hall Executive Committee (comprised of elected student representative, again) of each hostel and they choose who the contract goes to (private messes FTW!). The professors won’t take attendance in classes, albeit this doesn’t give the students the liberty to not attend classes.

The college festivals: Antaragni, Techkriti and Udghosh are all planned and executed by the Core Teams (students, again) at the behest of the Students’ Gymkhana - which oversees all student activities. The Students’ Senate is an empowered body which acts as a channel to convey the aspirations of students to the Institute authorities; who in turn ensure that all decisions affecting the student body are taken only after consideration of the our opinions. Even the placements, which requires a professional dialogue between multinational companies like Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, McKinsey, BCG etc is handled impeccably by students.

IIT Kanpur is a thriving microcosm, and this post barely scratches the surface of what makes IIT Kanpur so badass. (Just so you know we won both the Inter IIT Sports General Championship - students and faculty - and Inter IIT Tech General Championship this year which bears testimony to the fact.)

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