Be it the accommodation of a traditional tribal necklace in the outfit of a North-Eastern student, fasting before Eid, or bringing with us the post-holiday ghar-ka-khaana, we all have managed to keep a bit of home alive in us.
The University of Delhi (DU) invites students from all over the subcontinent, and therefore, becomes a microcosm of what the spirit of diversity is all about. In any given college, there would be students from not just every single state of India, but from various neighbouring countries, enrolled. As such, you are able to differentiate one from the other, but certainly not in a divisive way. These different students all come together, bring with them their specific points-of-view, and works towards a common, shared goal.
Be it the classroom, or a society – the amalgamation of various ethnicities is what sets DU apart from the rest of its counterparts.
While it is essential to become one with our peers, we must also not forget that we all have our unique stories, and that is what keeps us interesting, and in some cases, even relevant. In the bid to fit in, we must not let go of where we come from, and maintain our culture – be it art, food, music – people want to hear about it.
In DU, the inquiring of the other cultures is an enormous part of the everyday conversation. On asking Bengalis about Durga Pujo, South Indians about their food, Marathis about Ganesh Chaturthi, we unknowingly, yet enjoyably, become more aware of other cultures, and become truly cultured.
It often does away with the stigma that we might have harboured about a given community, and they always seem less intimidating that they must have appeared.
Besides the educational aspect of it, maintaining the identity of your home(town) lends an aesthetic, almost artistic look to the ambience because the campus has that much more multiplicity.
All said and done, if there is a certain piece of jewellery, a certain harmony, a certain way of greeting people that is characteristic of the place you come from, make it a part of you. Embrace it and embody it, because trust me, identity is more than what it is given credit for.
Feature Image Credits: DU Beat Archives