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Ramjas, gamcha and the unspoken love story

Colleges may be famous for varied things. It can be the mouth-watering food at the cafe, famous alumni like Shahrukh Khan and Amitabh Bacchan, a Parliament or something really bizarre like a tree! But, one of the oldest colleges in University Of Delhi, Ramjas college stands out for its Gamchas!

 

Many Ramjas students can be seen sporting a Gamcha with T- shirts and shirts on, which seem really odd and out of place to some eyes, however it is indicative of the mixing of Western and Indian cultures representing the melting point of all ends- a typical attribute of the North Campus. Other live examples of this can also be seen in Nukkad Nataks wherein participants usually wear Kurta and Jeans. This “Gamcha” style has somewhat contributed to creating a distinct identity of Ramjas students and at the same time has given rise to a whole bunch of Gamcha– Ramjas memes.

New meme content is something people strive for. Now let’s address the elephant in the room, how long are we going to keep stretching that “Mature Bag” thing or the “JCB ki  khudai?” Although these Ramjas- Gamcha memes aren’t that popular, anyone who’s familiar with the students’ obsession with Gamcha would laugh his or her face off! But where does the meme hail from? So we got our detective coats on and went ahead to deconstruct the famous ‘Gamcha memes’

Now, if we have a parochial view, some may call it a stereotype or preconceived notion, or even take offence (Quora knows! *wink*) but that is actually not the case! What many of us fail to see is that DU’s talk of the town- Ramjas, gives you a canvas where every community and culture can splash their unique hues and colours!

Thanks to some of the students from Ramjas, we got to know that the “Gamcha” culture can be traced back to the historically huge diaspora of students who hail from Bihar and Haryana at Ramjas College, as well as the politically active nature of the college. Ramjas College known as a breeding ground has given our country many tall leaders and freedom fighters like Chaudhary Brahm Prakash (Freedom fighter and first Chief Minister of Delhi) and Sarup Singh (Former Member of Rajya Sabha and former Governor of Gujarat).

There is a deep connection between Indian politics and the Gamcha, because, well let’s get the preconceived notion for a bit, we generally have a set gamcha or Nehru coat for every political entity. Just as the universal dress of politicians and leaders in India is white sparkling and crisp Kurta-Payjama, it’s their colourful Gamcha (with a streak of their party colour) which denotes their political affiliations. Therefore, in this context it isn’t wrong to say that although leaders have come and gone over the decades, the Gamcha has retained its significance in the political attire and hopefully, it is here to stay.

 

Featured Image Credits: Instagram

 

Abhinandan Kaul

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Priyanshi Banerjee

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