After 2 years of lockdown, school and college students embrace festive buzz

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THE ICONIC Malhar festival by St Xavier’s College will be a two-day event this year instead of three. The Immaculata – an inter-school festival by St Mary’s School, saw greater alumni participation as they had missed out on the festival buzz during the pandemic-induced lockdown.
Now, colleges and schools are ready to hold student-managed festivals with the same pre-pandemic excitement but with a few changes.
The Malhar festival will be pushed to the end of August instead of its regular three-day celebration around Independence Day. “The general practice is that a going-out batch passes on the knowledge of managing the festival to the newer batches as they work together to organise the event. However, this year the organising committee is very new with little knowledge of things, like which permissions are required, which authorities are to be approached and tackling sponsorships,” said Dr Rajendra Shinde, principal of St Xavier’s College, adding that the event has been reduced by a day and dates have been pushed to August 29-30.
G D Somani Memorial School’s festival ‘Melange Total 5’ will be a one-day affair instead of two. School principal B D Seymour told the Indian Express, “We will use that day to sanitise the entire school properly before the school starts regular functioning. Students have been missing out on this exposure, which helps build their personality as they work to manage the event.”
This year, the school has not kept any limit on the number of participating schools due to the enthusiasm of participants. Most educationists had spoken about how the lack of exposure to extracurricular activities during the lockdown will have a lasting impact as compared to academic loss.
Students have missed out on this and so, at St Mary’s School this year, a total of five batches got together to manage the event Immaculata, which was celebrated on July 2. Mona Soningra, a teacher who was part of the organising committee, said, “Usually students from class IX and X organise the festival. But this year, alumni from the past three years helped organise it. This helped the current batch in learning the knowhow but at the same time, the earlier batches got to relive the moment.”
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At IIT-Bombay, learning from the alumni is the mantra for this year’s Techfest. “After two years of remote work, we go completely offline for the Techfest this year — we are constantly in touch with our seniors,” said Pavithra Pilli, media and marketing head for IIT-Bombay’s Techfest, which will be held in December.
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