Pinakita Gupta


Holi is round the corner and the balloon bombardment has begun! However, some people love it dirty and disgusting. Here are ten tips for those who don’t think colors and water cover the essence of the festival.

EGGS: Eggs are the first choice because they not only stink but really hurt when hit from a distance. They are slimy and once stuck to your clothes, hard to get off. Egg throwers should eggspect a few tears!

TOMATOES: Some people have taken inspiration from the Spanish Tomatina festival and started using tomatoes on Holi. If you like it even dirtier, save up some rotten tomatoes!

BIRD POOP: Yes, people do use bird poop. Mix it with gulal and smear it on people’s faces and you will get more than a few disgusted looks. So beware!

MUD: Wet mud i.e., keechad has always been a hot favorite on Holi. Apart from rubbing it on others’ faces, you can mix it with water and fill your balloons with it.

TOOTHPASTE: It is used just like gulal and has an upside too. It comes off easily. However some super smart people grab the mouth and rub it over your teeth!

GOBAR: Even though it is extreme, people love to make others puke on Holi. One gobar cake per head is just about enough to make anyone hurl.

INK: Fill it in you pichkaris and spray it on people. This is one colour that’s never coming off! Plus there are plenty of options, there is blue, black, red and even green. It’s liquid gulal that stays.

GREASE: Grease, not the pukka rang, but the oiling paste used in vehicles. It is black, thick, oily and extra sticky. For anyone wanting to make their Holi a notch dirtier, this is the thing to use.

SAUCES: They offer a wide range of choice and are edible, which is definitely a good thing. There is tomato sauce, barbeque, mustard and many more. Let’s not forget the chutneys-Coconut, mint, tamarind and many other varieties.

SPIT: You are your own manufacturer; you always have it and have enough of it! Spit in your hand, add gulal and smear it on your enemies’ face! Make sure he knows spit is involved otherwise where’s the fun?

You would be better off not using a few of these because the repercussions are definitely not going to be pretty!

Picture Credits:

The second day of the annual fest of Miranda House, tempest saw several competitions. The street play competition called ‘halla bol’ was the first one. Only 8 teams from Delhi University were short listed by Miranda House got to participated in this. The top 8 included Daulat Ram college, Shivaji, Hansraj, Jesus and Mary college, College of business studies, PGDAV, IP college, Kamla Nehru college, Mahraja Agrasen, and Shree Ram college of Commerce. The winners were CBS, the second position was tied between Hansraj and PGDAV, the third position was bagged by Maharaja Agrasen College. The Indian choir Competition was won by Venkateshvara College, Lady Shri Ram came second and the third position went to Faculty of music, defeating colleges like Hansraj, Kirori Mal and Kamla Nehru. The group song event was also won by Venkatashvera College, the second position was bagged by Lady Shree Ram and the third position went to Faculty of music. A unique feature of tempest was the set up of zorbing, flying fox and rappling by the Adventure Society of the college to entertain its students. The last day of Tempest saw a performance by Shilpa Rao. However, it was a short performance and left the audience wanting more.  ]]>

The BMMMC (bachelor of mass media and mass communication) of Indraprastha College for women held its first national seminar. It was a two day affair held on the 28th and 29th of January, attended by all mass media students from several colleges. Many reputed people traveled from all over the country to address the students, such as Parvez Alam, Biplab Loha Das, Madhumita Ghosh and prof. Kiran Prasad. They spoke on the culture of social media and social movements. Pranjay Guha Thakurta, an industry professional with over 35 years of experience was also one of the speakers.

Dr. Uma Pandey, Debraj Mukherjee and Madhvi reddy spoke about the mass media’s autonomy and the concept of free space. Vinod Dua, a well known name in the media industry, addressed the students on democracy, censorship and social media, its challenges and pitfalls.

It was a success and well enjoyed by all students.

Teach For India, a project of Teach To Lead, is a nationwide movement of outstanding college graduates and young professionals, who will commit two-years to teach full-time in under resourced schools and train to become lifelong leaders.

Today, Teach For India is in 5 cities – Mumbai, Pune, Delhi, Hyderabad and Chennai. They have a total of 550 Fellows and 196 Alumni working towards eliminating educational inequity.

TFI is now organizing an event called “Redraw India”, holding several contests including street plays, essay writing and photography. The topics range from Right to Education, Education for sustainable development, Policy and Planning of Education System, to the three things you would like to change in the current education system.

10 best cartoons, best 5 stories and best 5 essays will be short listed. 50 percent of the decision will be based on public popularity. Entries will be published on the Redraw India Page on Facebook, and participants will have to ask people to either vote or like their entries. The rest will be assessed by the votes of the TFI team.

For the photography competition, only one entry is allowed per individual. The dimension of the photo should be 8.3*11.27 inches (A-4 size), and the size of the photo should not exceed 20MB. Do not add effects to the photos, as these will not be considered for the competition. Each entry must have a caption along with a short interpretation of the theme, as per the personal understanding of the participants.

For the case study, people will participate in a group of two. The teams can be formed with students from different colleges. The judges for the case study will establish a point system for the purpose of comparative judgment. Two cases will be uploaded to have a better evaluation of a team and a cumulative scoring will be done, based on the points allotted. The first case will ask for general evaluation while the second case will require the teams to answer specific questions.

Entries open on 15th January and close on the 22nd. All entries are to be mailed to [email protected]. There are several cash prizes to be won for the two best entries.

I recently took a trip with my college, Indraprastha College for Women, to Jodhpur and Jaisalmer, two popular tourist destinations in Rajasthan. The trip started with the blue city of Jodhpur and a visit to The Umaid Bhawan Palace. It is one of the world’s largest private residences. The Palace is divided into three functional parts – a luxury Taj Palace Hotel, the residence of the erstwhile royal family and a Museum focusing on the 20th century history of the Jodhpur Royal Family. A section of the palace showcases vintage cars owned by the royal family. The palace is picture perfect and the view stunningly beautiful. One can see the whole city from the palace since it is located at the highest point of the city.

The same evening we visited the Mehrangarh fort. It is one of the largest forts in India, situated 400 feet above the city and is enclosed by ramparts. Inside its boundaries there are several palaces known for their intricate carvings and expansive courtyards. A winding road leads to and from the city below. The imprints of cannonball hits by attacking armies of Jaipur can still be seen on the second gate. The fort is massive and every part of it has a story to tell. The carvings are incredibly intricate. The view from this fort gives a glimpse of the blue rooftops of the old city and explains why Jodhpur is called the blue city. They also have a tiny little café providing you with tasty nick nacks. The Mehrangarh Fort is one place not to miss if visiting Jodhpur. It’s a treat to all history lovers and one of the most interesting forts I’ve ever visited.

The other noteworthy place in Jodhpur is the Clock Tower which is the shopaholics’ treat. Its narrow alleyways sell everything from vegetables to sweets to handicrafts to textiles to silverware to jutis. Kachoris and mirch pakodas sold there are a must when visiting Rajasthan and will delight any foodie!

After spending one and a half day in Jodhpur, we departed for Jaisalmer which is 300kms from Jodhpur. we stayed in the camps close to the dessert in the outskirts of the city. The first thing I noticed upon arrival is the stars, millions and millions of stars at every patch in the sky twinkling away to glory. It’s absolutely breathtaking.

Next morning we went for a camel safari to the dessert. For starters, it is nothing like the joy ride you take on camels. When you sit on a camel for over an hour, your thighs will cry in pain and you won’t be able to able to walk properly for days. So be prepared! However, the experience is every bit worth it. The sight of the dessert is spectacular, acres and acres of sand with nothing else in sight. Your feet will sink into the sand which is hot on top and cold beneath. The feeling is amazing.

The look of the dessert at night is a whole other sight. The night safari is the next best thing to do. They take you in an open jeep to see the dessert. The freezing weather, ice cold sand, bonfire and a blanket of stars, it’s all you need to go speechless. It’s a sight so beautiful that will engrave itself into your brain forever.

Next day we went into the city of Jaisalmer. We visited the Gadisagar Lake. Artistically carved Chattris, Temples, Shrines and Ghats surround the banks of Gadisar Lake. The entrance to the Lake is through a magnificent and artistically carved yellow sandstone archway that is known as the Tilon-Ki-Pol.

The USP of Jaisalmer is its fort. The fort stands proudly amidst the golden stretches of the great Thar Desert, on Trikuta Hill, and has been the testimony of many battles. Its massive yellow sandstone walls are a tawny lion color during the day, fading to honey-gold as the sun sets, thereby camouflaging the fort in the yellow desert. For this reason, it is also known as the “Golden Fort”. This fort, popularly known as the ‘Sonar quila’ by the locals, is located in the very heart the city, and is one of the most breathtaking monuments in the locality. It is the only ‘live fort’ in India. The legend goes that the king was cursed to have people live and work in this fort always. One can shop in this fort as there is a full-fledged market inside it.

Few tips for people visiting Jaisalmer and planning to stay in tents are to carry your own bedding. The weather is way too cold and the bedding provided by the hotel is not enough. The food is not up to the mark. Beware of the camel ride, it won’t be pleasant post ten minutes! Travel light because bags cannot be dragged over sand. There won’t be enough water, its rajasthan! There definitely won’t be enough hot water. In spite of all this, it’s an experience of the life time and one must visit these places at least once.

Finally it was 19th October, that fateful day when I would get to see Enrique Iglesias Live in concert. There were three classes of tickets, VIP costing Rs. 15000, platinum for Rs. 8000 and gold (the one I bought) for Rs. 2500.

The gates opened at 5pm and everybody was inside the ground by 5:30pm. As soon as they let us in, we ran with all out might to be able to stand in front. Having done that, I managed to stand in the third row of the gold class. There were VIP and Platinum people ahead of course. Sadly I was 5 inches too short.I was stranded between tallies and couldn’t even see how the stage looked like. According to the pass, Enrique was supposed to come at 7pm. Well he didn’t. We stood for four hours just waiting. Thankfully I had friends with me but that ceased to matter after some time because everybody was talking to everybody out of boredom.  1 hour gone…two hours gone…3 hours gone and it started to feel like he was not going to turn up. To make things worse the crowd was well, pressing! People kept pushing and prodding and nudging and there was no place to even breathe. It was starting to get unbearable when finally at 9pm the stage when dark and there was Enrique standing right at the centre of the stage. I’m guessing that’s where he would have been because all I could see were people’s heads. That’s when the crowd lost it and started to push even more and here I was thinking it couldn’t get any worse. For a change the men were civilized and the women went berserk. The girl next to me kept spreading her arms and shouting I love you over and over again when there wasn’t even space to keep my feet. I got so annoyed that I dug my nails into her throat with all my strength as that was the only place reachable by my hands that were stuck in a really awkward position. Ten minutes into the concert, I was completely swamped by people and couldn’t take it anymore. Imagine an ant stuck between long blades of grass, I couldn’t even see the sky above me. I caught hold of the bouncer and asked him to get me out. He warmed me that once I’m out of the crowd; I’m out of the concert as well. I couldn’t care less, it’s not like I could see anything anyway. So he dug me and my friend out of the people, practically pulling my every limb in the process and carried me out in his arms stretched out above his head.

He led us out the enclosure, behind the VIP barricades and that’s when my luck changed. Suddenly I could see everything! That’s when I got my first glimpse of Enrique and my heart melted. There he was wearing a white V neck t-shirt and black jeans looking like a Greek god. Suddenly battling the crowd for four hours seemed worth it.

I got talking to the bouncer who was regulating the VIP entrance. I asked him if he would let me and my friend enter for some money. He asked for Rs. 1000 for both of us but we decided against it since the view was great from where we were. I sang along to all his songs as loudly as I could, cheered and jumped and head banged. After sometime the bouncer came up to me and said if you like him that much you can go in and led us inside the VIP stands for free! I was delighted.  Enrique was right under my nose! So close that I could see his sexy stubble as well! He sung all my favourite songs opening with ‘I like it’ and ‘escape’ and ending with’ Tonight I’m lovin’ you’. He called up a girl from the crowd while singing hero and hugged her for ten minutes, called up a twelve year old surd and made him sit next to him and sing along to his songs. He lay down on the ramp and out stretched both his arms on either side for people to touch him. He took people’s cameras, clicked himself and handed it back to them. He was a complete crowd pleaser.

For me it couldn’t get better or maybe it could if I was the girl he called up on stage! But that would be the jealousy talking because not many people buy the gold ticket and get to stand in VIP stands! The concert lasted for an hour and a half. It was an hour and a half of pure bliss! I fell in love with Enrique all over again and was mesmerized by him.

Recently, McDonalds introduced a new burger called McEgg. It is priced at Rs. 25 and therefore affordable by all. I was very excited to try this burger because of the appetizing picture and as I absolutely love egg.

Looking at the picture, you would expect soft bread, eggy interior with onions and oozing mayonnaise. Well it isn’t. The burger is extremely dry and I just couldn’t taste the onions. The burger seriously lacks seasoning and thus, is bland on the palette. This blandness kills the taste of the egg as well. There is a little blob of mayonnaise right in the centre and that’s it. So apart from one bite, you won’t taste any mayonnaise at all, just bread and tasteless egg. The burger is so dry because of the lack of mayonnaise that it sticks to the walls of your mouth. McEgg lacks texture and desperately needed some crunch. That crunch was supposed to come from the onions but even those are sparsely found.

McEgg can be made edible only by ordering it with cheese and extra mayonnaise. But then what it costs is Rs 65. To be honest, I’d rather eat the egg and buns from the roadside thelawalas! The taste is far better and comes at more or less the same price.

McEgg for me is a sad attempt at a burger and lacks everything it should have had. I wouldn’t eat it again unless someone paid me to do so.

Pretty Little Liars is about a group of five girls (Alison, Hanna, Emily, Aria and Spenser) who are best friends and live perfect lives in a small town called Rosewood. Their life turns upside down when the leader of their posse, Ali, goes missing. The story begins when the Police find Ali’s body after three years of her disappearance and the four friends start getting devious messages about their secrets that they would much rather forget from an anonymous person signing off as A.

Personally, I liked the TV series much more than the books, probably because I saw the TV series first. It’s crisper and far more gripping as compared to the books. Books start to get boring and repetitive in between, especially when they go into flashbacks reliving a particular memory again and again for four different perspectives revealing just a tiny new detail. The TV series keeps you glued to your chair and makes it impossible to even blink. A major flaw in the TV series is that the age of these girls is shown to be 14, but their deeds are beyond their years. But the book portrays them as 16 thus making it believable.

Their love lives and personalities are portrayed very differently in the books as compared to the TV series. Hanna is made to look rather evil and Emily is way too timid and meek. In the books, the four of them never become friends, even though their lives often intersect. The thing I like about the books is that each chapter is written from a different girl’s perspective and therefore gives you insight into each of their lives.

However, the books lack drama and suspense. The twists and turns showed in the TV series are far more interesting and fascinating (Even Sara Shepard, the author, is hooked to the TV series).

Having seen the TV series first, I fell in love with Toby and my heart broke when he died in the book. Ezra and Aria broke up way too soon for my liking. And I hated the fact that Wren cheated on both Malissa and Spencer both. Having formed my loyalty to the TV series first, loving the books as much as the show is difficult. None the less, the books are definitely worth reading!

Last year was my first year in college and as the elections approached, I started to root for that holiday that all my friends were getting. The election day holiday. But my bubble burst when I realized that my college is not a part of Delhi University Student Union (DUSU). I study in Indraprastha College for Women, yet another all-girls college which is not a part of Delhi University Student Union (DUSU). So election time for us is just like any other time, dull and drab with no new excitement. It’s the same old life of everyday. In spite of being located in North Campus, all we get to do is hear about how alive other colleges are- campaigning, rallies and demonstrations- and not get to see it. Nobody is shouting slogans or bribing us to vote for them, no graffitis and no agenda fliers littered all over, nothing.  We completely miss the election hullabaloo that happens in most other colleges. We’re never a part of any election scandal! No candidate barges into to our college and (to our major disappointment) disrupt our classes or create a commotion! And the worst part, we do not get a holiday on the election date. We have regular classes throughout the day since we don’t have to go and vote. We miss being a part of one of those DU cults that define it.

What we don’t miss is well the hooliganism that is rampant during this time, mobs, fights, eve teasing and the likes of these. We all saw the extremities it could go to when a girl was molested during a rally. I guess this is why all girl colleges abstain from being a part of DUSU. Better safe than sorry, but safe is sure boring! We feel rather left out and it’s not like people spend that holiday voting, they have fun, we don’t even get to do that. So it’s just really sad! There are too many disadvantages and not enough advantages to balance it out. But let me make one thing clear, it is not about who wins to represent us; it’s the whole experience that is worth having which we are deprived of.

So, where is the democracy which everyone claims to live in and how come we don’t get our adult suffrage rights?