If there is something that is unique to IIT Kharagpur amongst all the other IITs, then it has been the special way in which Diwali is celebrated here. Illumination is what is unique to IIT Kharagpur during Diwali and this is something that all KGPians remember throughout their lives. Illumination or Illu as it is popularly called remains alive in the memories of each and every IIT Kharagpur student forever, who have witnessed this event right from the time of preparation to watching the flawless and beautiful structure glowing prominently in the dark. This event instills a sense of pride, accomplishment, togetherness and honor amongst the students and something that they look forward to every year. Let me tell you about what makes Diwali in IIT Kharagpur so special.
Diwali in IIT Kharagpur
There are various halls in IIT Kharagpur and each of these halls face tough competition amongst themselves during Illu. This is the time of the year when each of the halls has the chance to show off their creativity and they come up with a unique theme. They decorate their halls with chatias and giant grids made from bamboos. They make use of wire loops to tie diyas together so that they can create beautiful and illustrative patterns. The students put in a dedicated effort for countless hours in making Illu successful and grand. This festival reveals their unmatched creativity that is beyond the books and truly inspiring and appreciable.
The preparation for this grand event begins many months before Diwali and all the halls are decorated with lights. The ambiance of the entire campus changes on the day of the event and hundreds or students mount tables and chairs one over the other in order to reach the chatias and the grids that are sometimes as high as 20 feet. Sometimes as many as 20,000 diyas are used. The winning team gets a pot of ‘rasgullas’ traditional Bengali sweets to be shared among others.
Apart from Illumination, there is another way in which Diwali at IIT Kharagpur is special and that is ‘Rangoli’. Colors, crushed bangles and a lot of other colorful things are mixed together to create beautiful art patterns on the grounds. This is a treat to the eye and truly a great sight to see.
This was first started by the Azad Hind Hall in the year 1981 and it has now transformed into a major event of IIT Kharagpur. Diwali in IIT Kharagpur not only brings out the creativity of students but also helps them bond together – something which symbolises Diwali. A lot of festivals are celebrated with grandeur in the IIT Kharagpur premises but nothing beats Diwali in IIT Kharagpur.
Being a spacious campus, life at IIT Kharagpur is limited to campus. But we students make the most out of it. There is a reason IITs are considered to be the best institutes in the country and these cultural events are part of the reason behind it.