It’s tempting to fall into unhealthy habits, but a balanced lifestyle is the key to a vibrant college life.

One enters college with an abundance of excitement, hope, and the most fun of them all, freedom. While this freedom provides opportunities for growth, it also brings with it a sense of carelessness. When you’re no longer answerable to Mom, you let loose. In most college students, this leads to the rise of some unhealthy habits. Being able to stay in bed and Zomato all the time may seem like a dream come true at first, but it inevitably invites problems.

However, that is not the only factor that could lead to the development of an unhealthy lifestyle. It’s also easy to feel so drowned in assignments, society work, or internships that there’s no room left for exercise or any hobbies for that matter. After a hectic college day, there is nothing more inviting than your bed. With an episode of your current binge and some pizza on the side. This becomes a routine that’s hard to break out of.

“The appeal of the taste of fast food is not the only thing that has kept me in the habit of ordering in almost every night. It’s also very convenient to not have to prep or cook meals. It feels like a quick fix after a long day.” -Vansh, a second-year student

Moreover, “broke college student” is a famous phrase for a reason. When short on budget, cooking the same instant ramen pack a few different ways to get through the week is appealing. Thus, many factors contribute to the rise of unhealthy eating habits among college students. Another major problem is that of little to no exercise. It’s difficult to make time for a routine. The norm of going late to bed and having to wake up early for morning classes keeps one in the cycle of feeling tired throughout the day. Pulling all-nighters consistently and then drinking tons of coffee to survive, skipping meals, and not exercising are therefore common elements of a college student’s lifestyle. The allure of it all is heavy. But this lifestyle is unfortunately not sustainable. How do we beat it?

It’s important to start at the fundamental level and correct your basics. Build your day around a healthy sleep schedule, eat at the right time, and start incorporating at least some exercise throughout the week. As cliché as this might sound, your elders are correct. Doing this will significantly improve your quality of life and help you focus better on your goals. You don’t need some rigid instruction table to help you achieve all of this. Start slow and be soft with yourself. It’s also okay to maintain some flexibility. You do not need to cut Netflix or McDonald’s out of your life (duh, how could we ever?). Just practice moderation with it.

“After college hours, it feels unsafe for me to travel to and from a gym in the city. So, I’ve made it a point to wake up a little extra early in the mornings to do yoga. This way I get some exercise done every single day.” -Gauri, a second-year student at KNC.

While waking up early is definitely not the best suit for many of us, here are some things that you can do to start living a better and healthier life. When you get hunger pangs at odd hours, have fruits for snacks instead of reaching for a packet of chips. They’re yummy and healthy, plus super convenient to grab. Replace your caffeinated beverages with better alternatives that also serve as a refresher, such as milkshakes. When you do need to order in, pick healthier options as opposed to fast foods. For exercise, try to include movement in the little day-to-day tasks. Walk around on your study break instead of sitting in bed. Take the stairs instead of elevators wherever possible (the metro station maybe?). Discover a safe road/park near you and go for the occasional walk while on the phone with family or friends.

There are innumerable little ways you could create a better lifestyle for yourself. Making conscious choices regarding nutrition and exercise will take care of you both physically and mentally, improving academic performance and overall quality of life. Pave the way for a balanced and fulfilling college experience that sets you up for success in the long run. Cheers to doing better!

Featured Image Source: Pinterest

Read also: Health and Wellness Guide for Busy College Students

Arshiya Pathania

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A strong ballad that reminds you of the quintessential essence of Music, Harry Style’s Sign of the Times echoes our struggle for equality and keeps our hopes alive for the young must conquer. 

There’s a special thing about Music and lyric – it’s eternal presence; the ever long availability and it’s the ability to feed in artificial and human memory makes it a significant instrument to strike the chords of change that are hard to achieve otherwise. These crisp, short, hard-hitting words in sumptuous symphonies or in an amalgamation of rock and roll deploy a certain kind of adrenaline rush. Coupled with the popular stars who have an increasing base and reach, the theme of political and social relevance often finds a place in their approach and outset that promulgates important messages. 

From Beatles to Beyonce, music together with other performance arts has been an important tool to achieve social objectives, from racism to mental health and in dealing with events like elections and gun violence in the states. ‘Every revolution has a sound,’ the echoes of the modern struggle for equality is well observed in many songs but for many specific reasons I choose Harry Styles debut solo single ‘Sign of the Times.’

A subtle and splendid number from the ex One Directioner, was a surprise to many that harkens back to David Bowie transcending the 70s to modern geopolitical context, ‘Sign of the Times’ takes somewhat an eschatological end born out of the political suffering. 

The lyrics of the song are just like the untangling of the complexity of an extreme simpleton, basic words, strong sentences, construct hard phrases that leave ambiguous interpretations. The song is about the pangs of a dying woman who is being separated from her child after childbirth, she has five minutes for being all the moral and didactic to her child who needs to ‘conquer the world’ as the reality approaches, but is that it? In an interview with Rolling Stone, Styles talks about the ‘Fundamentals’ that inspire him for this piece, things like Equality, Human Rights. Styles compels us to think about these basic things that are often sought to be an obligation on the part of the authority are due essentials on the part of every single being. 

In a further exchange with the New York Times, Styles takes on the political upheaval and catastrophes ensuing the show of political superiority in the world, he talks how the outside chaos in the world can’t be segregated from his song. He says, “We’re in a difficult time, and I think we’ve been in many difficult times before.” Further quotes, “But we happen to be in a time where things happening around the world are absolutely impossible to ignore … It’s very much me looking at that. It’s a time when it’s very easy to feel incredibly sad about a lot of things.”

The current situation appropriately explains the lyrics and the feelings that a significant amount of population carries in times of distress, the sense of freedom, the idea of hope to calm the human emotions that are inevitable in a crisis as such. Sceptical about it? Remember the lines. 

“Just stop your crying It’s a sign of the times We gotta get away from here We gotta get away from here Just stop your crying It’ll be alright They told me that the end is near We gotta get away from here”


Image Credits: spin

Faizan Salik

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The pop music industry is booming with new music, new artists, and new releases. But the one thing that has remained constant is the deep-rooted sexism. 

Hardly any of us would be ignorant about the general consensus of the world on male pop groups or singers. Every conversation about BTS, One Direction, Justin Bieber, Shawn Mendes elicits the same scorn filled reaction from self-proclaimed music critics and experts- a passing trend, shallow music, etc. “They’re only famous because they’re pretty” is a popular belief, and it becomes important to acknowledge the not so subtle sexist undertones that lace this common misconception. 

A common feature of these singers and groups is their predominantly larger female fanbase. It is this demographic that automatically reduces their music to something that only ‘thirteen-year-old teenage fangirls’ listen to. And even if it is just thirteen-year-old teenage girls listening to it, why is it that it becomes a bad thing? One could say that every neighbourhood rapper in the past 12 years has had the same sad flow beaten to death over and over again, and yet with a fanbase that is predominantly male-centric, it becomes a thing of critic and is labelled ‘cool’. 

Anything that women and girls love is deemed hysterical, even though men and boys might have the same level of passion for an artist without being considered ‘frenzied’ or ‘mad’. Fans of artists like Eminem haven’t truly been sneered at for decorating their spaces with his merch, which unfortunately does not hold true for pop artists like BTS and Taylor Swift.

The biggest example of this has to be the global sensation Beatles. The band’s rise to popularity in the 1960s came to be termed as Beatlemania. The band was known for its ‘screaming female fans’ and was even dismissed early on as a fad. The fans, who were termed hysterical and their expression, which was termed as a mania probably says more than enough. Yet, almost seven decades down, they’ve only gotten bigger; The band that paved the way for fangirling is now termed a classic.  

The sexism in the industry becomes apparent when these artists are called homophobic and sexist slurs when their hard work and talent is reduced to nothing, when their sense of self-expression is labelled ‘girly’ because that makes them ‘less than’. And it isn’t just the artists who suffer too. As a male, liking these artists or groups makes the fans social pariahs as well. They are ridiculed and shamed for liking something ‘girly’. 

But that’s the notion that’s been established by the toxic masculinity perpetuated by society-  that men and soft emotions cannot coexist. That artists that rap and rock it out over dark, intense concepts are applauded in the same musical space where soft, peppy love songs are given a cold shoulder. 

 “I feel like the toxic notion that men are supposed to be rough and into ‘dark’ music is the reason why a lot of men only listen to rock/rap. Everyone somewhat enjoys pop music which is why it is pop. But revealing themselves as fans of easy, uplifting pop music does not align with their entire aura of being tough,” said a twenty-year-old male fan.

Sexism is not just limited to genres and artists though. The catchy songs hitting the charts reek of objectification, misogyny and in cases, even violence. Songs by popular artists like The Weeknd, David Guetta, Jason Durelo, have multiple lyrics objectifying women and calling them names. Eminem is known for producing music that talks about bashing gays and raping women, and well, he’s remained a favourite. Because, honestly, hardly any of us care about the lyrics when ‘the beat slaps’.

Evidently, in the industry, this sexism is perpetuated and sustained by the very industry itself- the artists and the fans alike. 

Feature Image Credits: Scopio

Satviki Sanjay

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Shreya Juyal

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Meet the band, When Chai Met Toast , that embodies happiness and performs it in their music.

Kartik: The band name is a very creative fusion of Indian roots meeting western elements, so what kind of musicians or bands from India and abroad influence your music?
Ashwin: Actually, a lot of them! I mean, there is a lot of inspiration from English folk, but we are experimenting with a lot of other stuff as well, which includes English and European folk.
Achyuth: Not really folk, more like pop.
Ashwin: We do not want to really define ourselves into a category or genre, as such.
Achyuth: Some of the artists that we have been listening include The 1975, Coldplay; Coldplay is an all-time favourite.
Ashwin: There is Sufjan Stevens as well. There is a bunch of artists we listen to, and are inspired by.


Kartik:What qualifies as good music for you?
Achyuth: Anything that sounds good, I guess.
Ashwin: Very difficult question!
Achyuth: Anything that is true, actually. Anything that comes from the people, whatever genre it is. Something that comes from within.
Ashwin: I will be very honest. More than what qualifies as good music to me, what my ears hear as good music is what I like. For instance, you cannot really ‘name’ good music or music that you like. You are not very fond of something at one point, and other times you love something. You cannot really classify or clarify what good music is, and we have not really given it a thought, so I think there is no generic or specific category of good music.
Achyuth: For me, it is anything that has some soul to it, in whatever way. It can be any artist, but as long as there is passion, there is good music.


Kartik: Your songs are multilingual. Notably, the transitions in the languages are very smooth in the songs, which make the composition very cohesive. How do you think the audience reacts to this aspect of your music?
Achyuth: First of all, we are glad you think so!
Ashwin: We have heard positive reviews till now, thankfully. Nobody has as yet, thrown anything negative at us. We try not to force the elements into a song just because the song has to carry out something which is multilingual or some meaning that has to be conveyed. We try to keep whatever we write as what it is.
Achyuth: The fact that we all speak multiple languages helps. So, we are not really restricting ourselves. If we want to convey something through a song in Tamil, we have the freedom to do that, because Ashwin knows how to speak Tamil. It gives us many options, as a band.


Kartik:I was just listening to your latest song, “Nee aara”, and I loved it! This is your first Malayalam single, please tell your listeners about the song and what it means.
Achyuth: Thank you very much! It starts off with self-introspection, and then it moves into the ideas of new beginnings, in various metaphorical forms.
Ashwin: In one sentence, it is like understanding your mistakes and then trying to rectify them, and finding what is wrong with you. It’s about finding the new you, to some extent.


Kartik: Do you guys have any just-the-band or personal rituals to do before performing on stage?
Ashwin: We definitely pump each other up!
Achyuth: There is like a band-huddle before the performance.


Kartik: How many shows have you done in the last one year? Which show has been the best in terms of audience and the derivative artistic gratification?
Achyuth: Around 80-90 shows. All of them were great shows.
Ashwin: As for the latter part of the question, I think both of us might have differing answers, let’s see.
Achyuth: Weekender Pune 2018 was a great one.
Ashwin: Oh, then it is the same. We played our 70s set for the second time at Weekender Pune.
Achyuth: We were still learning our parts for that, but we managed to do well, I guess.
Ashwin: Narayan on violin, Prashant on bass, along with trumpets, we had a proper ball of a time. It was great to see five thousand people in front of you, while Joe Satriani was playing on the other stage. The sound was amazing, thanks to Yogi for mixing that day, Guru did an amazing job with lights as well. It was a crazy good day for us, altogether.


Kartik: Can you describe what do you feel when you’re performing on stage and a massive crowd jams to your songs along with you?
Achyuth: I think that’s what we live for.
Ashwin: Yes, we dance with them. And live the moment, that’s it.


Kartik: So how would you describe this feeling in one word?
Ashwin: D-E-D, DED, a very millennial term. (laughs)


Kartik: What are your views on failures and/or criticism? And what do you think stays with the audience, the artist or the art?
Achyuth: The art definitely.
Ashwin: I think both. Like when the artist feels the art is when the people feel the art.


Image Credits: Adithya Khanna for DU Beat
Image Credits: Adithya Khanna for DU Beat


Kartik: All the band members have had professional training in Indian classical music. In times of rap and hip-hop, and pop rock, where do you think Indian Classical music is leading to?
Ashwin: It’s leading to world music, buddy. Bands like Agam, and Shadow and Light and so many other independent artists are working on Carnatic and Hindustani music. There are a lot of jazz singers who are blending Carnatic music with jazz. Carnatic music is in a completely different scale altogether than what we think is Indie.
Achyuth: There is immense potential in the genre. It’s already massive.
Ashwin: Totally, I mean a Carnatic music show in Singapore selling more than 2500 tickets that is the substance of the genre.


Kartik: In a lot of your music videos, there is a running metaphor of creative and artistic blockade, and coming out of it. One of these videos that has stayed with me is that of the song “Believe“. What are your views on creative expression and its ability to transgress social obligations or expectations?
Ashwin: That’s too tough for me, man! (laughs)
I have been doing music for ten years now (professionally), and I have been learning from almost twenty years. It is definitely a very difficult task coming from a state like Kerala, to build up something what we are trying to do. There is always this hurdle, always this blockade that hits you, and you don’t know what you have to do. You have to find out the right door to move across. It’s not like you sign with a label and you are there. It gets very difficult when you are independent, when you are doing everything by yourself. Within the band, all of us have certain roles, and it becomes this division of creative people, coming together and doing so much together. Everybody’s struggle to get out there speaks for freedom of creativity. We have also come from different social backgrounds. My father worked in a bank, and later retired as an architect. So, we have to tackle all that when we are doing something like curating music on a full-time basis.
Even though our parents and families support us in whatever ways they can, there’s always this element of social obligation that comes to the fore.
Achyuth: Our listeners also relate to it. (the struggle)
Ashwin: At the end of the day, whatever you are doing, you need to be happy with it.


Kartik: Which conveniently brings me to my next question. When Chai Met Toast identifies itself with ‘The Happy Project’, it focuses on creating music that makes the listener happy. How do you think it impacts your credibility and influence as a band in a Rockstar-world obsessed with romanticising sadness?
Ashwin: Funny, funny part! (laughs)
See once you are broken, hope for one day that you will be happy. Life is all about it, is it not? I mean if there are songwriters who are writing about this state of being broken, we are trying to get out of it.
Achyuth: I think you can call our music being on the ‘positive’ line. We are looking at the brighter side, even when we are talking about a break-up, for instance.
Ashwin: There are a lot of other factors that get into you in the form of anxiety and depression, now that is entirely different. There is another thing. Generally, in music, we do not wish to depend on emotions too much, right? Every emotion has its own set of feelings that it gives out. But think of this: somebody for instance, thought that she would die of cancer, but having worked hard, she comes out of it. She has definitely channelised her positivity in that fight. She discovered herself, and fought it back. So, it’s always greener on the other side, we just have to look at the green from our side, and just go for it.


Image Credits: Saubhagya Saxena or DU Beat
Image Credits: Saubhagya Saxena or DU Beat

Kartik: In an interview you talked about a school in Kashmir (Haji Public School) wherein your song “Firefly” is now sung by the students in assembly. What was your reaction to this discovery and how great of an achievement do you think it is for you?
Achyuth: I think, things like these make what we do, all the more worthwhile. I cannot give it a word, for sure, but the spontaneous reaction to the news was: immensely gratifying. To see our art reaching out and being accepted and loved by people who are like miles away. There have been multiple schools across the country like Patna and Kerala, where students have sung our songs. This is another part that makes our music meaningful. There are no age barriers, our listeners’ ages range from six-year-olds to seventy-year-olds.

Kartik: Please tell us about your upcoming album, tours, and shows.
Ashwin: We are working on the album. Pre-production is going on, song-writing is going on. We are trying to figure out when we are going to release it. We are also trying out different things, and experimenting with new elements and instruments.
Achyuth: We do not know, as yet, when exactly it will be ready, but it is definitely on the cards.
Ashwin: One thing that we know for sure is that we are all very stoked and looking forward to the fun that the process is going to be.
Achyuth: As for the shows, we will be playing at three shows in North India this month. We have not played in North India in a while. We have performances in Delhi, Chandigarh, and Jaipur. Tours are still being planned out.


Kartik: How do you like performing in the North Indian states?
Ashwin: There is no barrier such as North Indian states. We love performing everywhere. People accept our music, they come and dance, they have a happy time, we have a happy time. Everybody has their own share of happiness, and we just enjoy that whole ground of people singing and dancing. There is no differentiation as such.
Achyuth: For us, we are equally happy when we are playing in any part of the country. Anybody who loves music is loved by us.


Kartik: Now that you have a huge following as a band, where do you see yourself in another five years?
Achyuth: Hopefully playing outside India as well, I don’t know.
Ashwin: To be honest, would love to win a Grammy, but that might be too much to ask for. We would love to play at international festivals, that would be great.
Achyuth: Yes, spreading our vibe, now that we have reached many people in the country, and making difference in whatsoever way we can in the larger community.


Kartik: Will we be seeing you anytime soon in some University of Delhi fest?
Achyuth: You should be telling us! (laughs)
Kartik: We would love to have you!
Ashwin: Oh, we would love to play there, as well! It is very mutual.


Feature Image Credits: When Chai Met Toast via Facebook

Kartik Chauhan
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A year in this space has made me question my personal notions- what kind of diversity do we have? And is the presence of diversity the same as accepting it- those who bring it to the University of Delhi (DU)- with open arms? Read a take on the culture of shaming in a space meant for diversity.

For a University situated in the Capital of a nation that sells itself to globalisation with the tagline ‘Unity in Diversity’, cultural, economic, and social diversity is always a good self-promotional point. However, if you have been in DU for even a semester, the rose-tinted lenses wear off soon enough. We may have students from all over the country and beyond, but our academic and cultural spaces have not learnt the rhetoric of respecting the history that comes with different family and socio-economic backgrounds.

An average day in an English literature classroom in a  college considered ‘intellectual’- like Lady Shri Ram College- involves professors coming in class, throwing names of critics (mostly foreigners, usually white), and expecting students to have read them. An academic space is meant to challenge you, and to inform you about things you were formerly ignorant of. But the sighs of disappointment, ‘how do you call yourself educated’, and steely eyes filled with judgement when one is unaware of what the professor is speaking of; all are methods of shaming that do more damage than the promised ‘good’. 

It is unfairly ignorant to only speak of professors and classrooms as the harbingers of this attitude, since our own friend circles play a significant role in this process. We, as young-adults stepping outside the comfort of our homes, seek a sense of self-worth and validation from our friends. When belittled for listening to a certain kind of music, or for not having watched or read a movie or book considered ‘high art’, it is inevitable to lose faith in our intellectual capabilities. To be told that you need to have done specific, mostly privileged, and expensive things in order to fit in, is not only elitist, but also a form of childish bullying that all of us have been subjected to.

Most of us have not grown up with our fathers playing vinyl records of Bob Dylan or The Beatles to us as kids. The tag of a Grammar Nazi (wrong on every level), that we wear as a badge of honour will never encourage somebody to learn better English, but will be a reminder of the inefficiencies in their background. It says something about their history, over which they did not have active control, but it defines you as a person- an elitist who does not wish to be kinder and more empathetic.

To recognise that there are conditionings different than your own is a significant aspect of mental maturity that DU colleges fail to instil in us. Challenging us academically or giving us a plethora of resources to learn from is the thing one seeks, but DU’s rather popular culture of shaming us into learning is psychologically flawed, and ethically problematic in a time when we are learning and unlearning the caste, class, and cultural privileges and meritocracy. It is true that DU is not the only place where the culture of shaming is prominent and propagated, but when I think of DU, I think of diversity. To have diversity comes with the need to accept it, and I know our classrooms can change for the better. Arundhati Roy said, “To love. To be loved… To try and understand… And never, never to forget.” (If you have not read her, it’s okay. Take this as my recommendation, if you were looking for one?) I hope, DU does not forget its role and duty to diversity- intellectual and of all kinds- and understands that we are all learning, and we can do with a little kindness.

Anushree Joshi 

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After the declaration of results, several rounds of admissions to follow in the supernumerary seats of the ECA category.

On Monday, 15th July, the University of Delhi (DU) announced the schedule as well as detailed guidelines for aspirants seeking admission to its colleges under the Extra-Curricular Activities (ECA) quota.

The University conducted the Preliminary rounds of trial for fourteen categories of the ECA quota from 25th June 2019 to 5th July 2019. The results of shortlisted students to appear for the Final round of trials was released on 6th July 2019 and the Finals were conducted from 9th July 2019 to 14th July 2019.

Schedule for Registration and UG Admission via ECA quota Image Credit: Delhi University
Schedule for Registration and UG Admission via ECA quota Image Credit: Delhi University

According to the recent information uploaded on the DU website, the result or the merit list prepared after the Finals, will be notified on 17th July, 2019 at 5 pm. After which, there will be several rounds of registration and admissions for candidates whose names figure in ECA Merit Lists – four rounds have been scheduled so far. Aspirants should note that each college will conduct its registration process separately, and that there is no centralisation of this process. Therefore, they will have to apply separately to each of the colleges they are seeking admission to, during each of the registration and admission rounds.

The first round of registration is scheduled from 18th July 2019 to 20th July 2019, and the colleges will release their first notification of admitted candidates on 22nd July 2019 by 10 am. The candidates who secure admission in each of the rounds of admission, are required to pay their fees on the DU portal by 3 pm on the next day of taking admission.

There are 1,050 seats up for grabs under the fourteen categories according to the DU’s Bulletin of Information for candidates seeking admissions to Undergraduate programmes. The varsity has also specified that a maximum of five percent of the total seats in a college have to be put up for admission under this category.

Lastly, the aspirants seeking admission under ECA must keep in mind that they are required to carry all relevant documents in hard copy for the admissions procedure, and will also have to sign a bond on a non-judicial stamp paper, committing to take part in that ECA activities of the college, throughout their stay in college.

Feature Image Credit: Rishabh Chauhan for DU Beat

Bhavya Pandey

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University of Delhi (DU) extended a day’s relaxation in case of any delay incurred while arriving at the venue in time for the extra-curricular activities (ECA) trials for outstation students who have their trials scheduled on 25th and 26th June.

Outstation students witnessed a sigh of relief as University of Delhi (DU) declared relaxation in case of delay incurred while reaching the venue in time for the extra-curricular activities (ECA) trials. A day’s relaxation shall be extended by the varsity to the outstation students.

The ECA trials- a two level process– have commenced today,  kick-starting with Indian Classical Music (Vocal),  Dance, and Debate. The trials will be continuing till 5th  July, the results of which will be announced on 6th July on the official website of the University. This would be followed by the final round of selection, thereby giving the selected students a gateway to Univerity of Delhi.

The spatio-temporal glitches which are evident during the admission season turn out to be the major cause of stress for many outstation applicants. Hence, the flexibility in such a case emerges as a bliss. However, the relaxation is only extended for students having their trial slots on 25th and 26th June 2019.

“The relaxation is a welcoming step, as the schedule put forth by the University of Delhi has undergone frequent changes and delays. These delays and changes have posed as problems, given that the arrangements for transportation are difficult to be settled on a short notice,” says Shreya M., an outstation applicant from Odisha.

As reported by the Asian Age, an official of the University said, “The applicants who are unable to reach on given dates are instructed to reach venue at the earliest date, which is preferably on June 27 and contact the registration desk of the relevant category. The relaxation option is not available for those candidates whose trials are scheduled for any other dates for a category or for those categories for which trials are scheduled for a single day”.

The official site of the University of Delhi has also laid emphasis on the fact that the condition is selectively applicable for those who reside outside the National Capital Region (NCR), having their respective trials scheduled on 25th and 26th June.


Feature Image Credits: DUB Archives


Priyanshi Banerjee

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Music is for the soul; it is the oldest language of feeling and passion that transcends barriers like language, religion, region, etc. It unites people from all walks of life. It beguiles the senses, sets your mind free from the innate practicalities of life and creates a little space of escape where you can let the music empower, inspire and relax your mind.

For generations, people have used this medium to not only express themselves, but also to reach out to millions of other people. From the elusive folk music passed down from generations, to the emerging underground hip-hop music—it is dynamic and constantly evolving.

The recent trend of remixing old classic songs has garnered a lot of criticism for being lazy, showcasing lack of imagination, and being an easy alternative to earning quick money rather than by producing original music. However, India is not short of music or ideas. This diverse country has countless genres, instruments, and musicians with their unique music style still holding the power to enthrall the senses.

In a candid conversation, Sayani Rakshit, a member of Sangeetika, the Indian music society of Kamala Nehru College elaborates on classical music. She considers classical music to be permutations and combinations of ragas. These ragas are based on fixed set of seven notes which are combined in various ways to create countless melodies and compositions.

She further says, “Classical music is the deepest form of music that exists. There is no end to it, it has countless ragas. You have the most amount of scope here for creativity. For example, if am singing a composition, a bandish, I cannot tamper with the boundaries—but within the boundaries set by the raga, there is a lot of scope for creativity.”

Sayani mentions,“Beauty of classical music is in its routine. Ragas are sung at a particular time of the day. This is done because the notes have certain moods associated with them, which when sung at the right time are more impactful.”

She also adds, “I used to hate classical music when I first started out, but with a lot of practice and understanding, I am now an admirer of classical music. You need to understand the music in its various nuances and subtleties to appreciate it fully. This is why it is not very popular, because a person needs to understand various intricacies involved with this music to truly appreciate it.”

The underground hip-hop scene is rife with music that is politically and socially impactful. It is inspired and imaginative, hitting their audience with clean precision. Mcfreezak, a Delhi-based artist who is part of the Khirkee collective considers commercial hip-hop to be scripted. It feels artificial, highly constructed and fake, which loses the appeal of everything that real hip-hop aspires to be. Since it is not real, it is not able to connect with the real masses. Whereas their rap is grounded with the people and connects with their issues.

Mahima Dayal, famously known as Bawari Basanti, is a Hindustani classical and folk singer with a debut album “Underwater”. In a conversation with her, she shares her thoughts on folk music and considers it to be all about story telling and sharing wisdom. It’s one of the few art forms that cannot be taught, but is gained through osmosis.

She elaborates, “When I listen to manganihars, I can feel the sand falling through my fingers. Similarly, listening to bhangra and gidda music instantly puts an ecstatic smile on my face. This happens because folk music is a rustic reflection of our society and listening to it makes us feel more real. There is no pretence in the sound.”

Murshidabadi Project collaborates with musicians from all across the globe and specialises in simple yet peaceful Sufi music. He says, “Sufism talks about love and knowing the self to meet the divine. Its music is ideally raw and doesn’t require much accompaniment.”

According to him, Sufism is relevant in the present socio-political situation as it talks about love, peace and harmony. However, the mainstream audience is not in touch with it, as they do not have any choice as to the content that they choose to consume. The internet and television is so overpowered by the filmy music, that other genres do not get a platform.

As various classical genres of music struggle to gain ground in the contemporary demand trends of the music industry, a certain shift in the tastes and preferences of the audiences also can be easily observed in the subcontinent. Independent pop-rock band The Local Train or Indie artist Prateek Kuhad’s rise to fame is a testament to the previously mentioned shift in consumption. As new genres are on the rise, the idea of striking a balance between the contemporary and classical demands acknowledgement in the music industry.

Feature Image Credits: Vaibhav Tekchandani for DU Beat

Antriksha Pathania
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Fests seem to be a significant part of the whole college experience. And these fests are incomplete without a thrilling concert on stage. From sports fields to tour buses, several independent, signed, and Bollywood artists have toured the various colleges of India for their fests.

Here we count down five significant artists who are a popular sight at many a college concert. The following musicians and singers are featured in here in no particular order, just on the basis of genres and the space they have among the college-going youth. Many college fests take place over the course of two or three nights. The usual pattern is a rock band or a DJ making people jump for the early days, while playback singers from the film industry take over the final days.

  1. Electronic Dance Music (EDM)

Gurgaon-born DJ Zaeden is a popular pick of the new age electronic music producers. Zaeden has struck a chord with the youth, having performed at many colleges of University of Delhi (DU) and other technological institutes. Zaeden’s set usually features his originals like ‘Never Let You Go’, along with dance covers of Coldplay and Maroon 5 songs.

But if you want to hear remixes of mainstream film music, then DJ Chetas and NYK to a lesser extent could be your choice. Chetas’ rise is remarkable as his work might seem pretty mediocre in the face of new-age DJs like Ritviz and Mojo Jojo. Still, Chetas knows how to market himself. His career took off with making themed mashups of Bollywood songs that were featured on the 9X TV network; soon his mashups and remixes found their way in the fest circuit increasing his brand name.

Still, the most original music producer in this scene is Nucleya. With hardly any remixes, he cuts straight to the chase whipping out his classic trance tracks like ‘Bass Rani’ and ‘Laung Gavacha’. Sometimes, if colleges have enough funds, they can even call up foreign DJs to add to the star value. For instance, Quintino in his Indian tour leg even managed to perform his sets at IIT Kanpur and BITS Goa last year. In Delhi’s Sri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC) it was rumoured that this year, the mask-wearing DJ Marshmello or Alan Walker (another DJ who likes covering his face) would headline their fest. But these were just rumours, as in the end, it was DJ Chetas who performed.

  1. Acoustic/ Rock

When it comes to light acoustic vibes, Prateek Kuhad is the top pick. Featuring a three-piece band, he smoothly sings and plays his guitar while the audiences just swoon. A critically acclaimed songwriter, his track list has both English and Hindi tunes, usually with slow instruments and themes of love and life. With most of his followers being millennials, it’s only apt for the ‘Cold Mess’ singer to be a sensation at college fests.

But when it comes to rock, there’s an even bigger force to be reckoned with—a band called The Local Train. The rock band is a recent phenomenon that started out with their first record ‘Aalas ka Ped’, an instant hit amongst a modest fanbase. Two albums old, they are touring all over the country performing in nearly every Hard Rock Café, and nearly every college fest. Churning out songs in a mix of Hindi and Urdu, their tracks like ‘Khudi’ and ‘Aaoge Tum Kabhi’ deal with various themes like following your dreams and waiting for a lover; stuff which appeals to the dreamy college kid. It’s safe to say that The Local Train is not so ‘local’ anymore!

  1. Film music

This is where the fest gets fully mainstream. Bollywood artists usually have many singles from film’s soundtracks, which make for popular music content for the fest audiences. Duos like Vishal-Shekhar and Saleem-Sulaiman are big hits in this regard.

Then there are popular Punjabi artists too in fest line-ups, like Diljit Dosanjh and Guru Randhawa. They sing originals as well as songs featured in films. While the background musicians manage the performance, and the singers’ bravado gets the crowds jumping, some do not consider them as true performers. A case in point is Diljit’s concert at Rendezvous (the annual fest of IIT Delhi), where many fans noted how the singer was lip-syncing for most of his songs.

Then there are a few other artists who manage to perform a varied set of both film and independent content. Farhan Akhtar assisted by his band Farhan Live! starts off his fest shows with songs from his popular films, Rock On and Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara; adding in ballads from albums of his own. Assamese Bollywood singer Papon (who recently performed at Hindu College on top of a Red Bull tour bus) also manages to play a few non-film tunes. Amit Trivedi has also sung his MTV Coke Studio songs for many a college fest. On a side note, Amit Trivedi’s concerts are truly a team effort. He not only introduces all his background singers and musicians to the audience but sometimes gives them the stage to perform their exclusive pieces.

Featured Image Credits: Aakarsh Gupta for DU Beat

Shaurya Singh Thapa

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Here is a recap of Day 1 at Tempest 2019, the annual cultural festival of Miranda House.

Tempest 2019- the Annual Cultural Fest of Miranda House- University of Delhi kick-started on 14th February 2019. There were a plethora of events scheduled by the college but most of them got delayed due to unfavourable weather conditions. Nevertheless, the events ran smoothly and the first day of Tempest turned out to be a fulfilling and vibrant experience for the attendees.

The Annual Rachita Das Gupta Quiz was organized by the Quiz Society of Miranda House. They conducted three quizzes on Day 1. The Open General Quiz saw participation of 30 teams with 2 members in each team. Mukund and Dhruv bagged the first position, while Rorik and Rohan came second, and Basab and Amlan stood third. Eco Biz Filler witnessed Kirti and Pragati win the competition. In the Open India Quiz, Ashish and Abhishek Paliwal came first while the duos of Jayant and Amlan, and Ankur and Kartik Puri stood second and third, respectively.

Vaatavaran, the Eco Club of Miranda House organised Enviro Quiz, a short-film-based quiz. It saw participation from 20 teams from across different colleges. The first prize was awarded to Poornima and Yash, while Karishma and Garima, and Pragati and Niharika bagged the second and third prizes, respectively.

E-Cell, Miranda House, organised three Inter-College events at Tempest 2019. Combination- an event related to geographical locations of companies, saw participation of 20 teams with two students in each team. Addictive- a marketing competition of pitching products in the style of Bollywood, was won by Ashok, while Pinku came second. Boss Hunt- a Treasure Hunt had 35 teams compete, where Aditya Sah came first, while Neeruganti Purnima came second.

11 Dance Societies from across different colleges, which qualified the online preliminaries, performed at Burlesque, the Western Dance Competition, organised by Tanz, the Western Dance Society of Miranda House. The event was judged by Mrs. Sameeksha and Mr. Nitin Theo Kerketta. Enliven (Western dance society of Gargi) won the competition, while Crunk (Western dance society of Sri Aurobindo) came second.

The next event was the Hindi Debating Competition where the students battled their wits on the topic- “Sadan ke math mein loktantra maatr ek saashan pranali nahi, jeevan mulyo ka srot hai (In the opinion of the House, democracy is not only a regime conduct, but it is the source of life values).” It was judged internally by teachers- Mrs. Kusuma Krishna Subha and Mrs. Meeta Kumari. Smriti from Lady Shri Ram College was awarded the title of Best Speaker in favour of the motion while Happy from Ramjas College was awarded as Best Speaker in opposition.

Amid the melody of raag Darbari and Yaman, Sangam- the Indian Classical Music Competition- organised by Geetanjali, the Indian Music Society of Miranda House saw various performances that had the audiences captivated. With 14 participants in the Duet Singing Competition and 13 teams representing their colleges in the Choir Singing Competition, the event was a huge success. The Duet Singing Competition concluded with SGTB Khalsa College’s Sukriti and Saksham bagging the second prize, with the winner’s title being claimed by Hansraj College’s Pranava and Ram.

Adwitiya, the Fine Arts’ Society, in a stunning display of powerful art, transformed SAC to an exquisite art gallery. From portraits to abstract brushstrokes, all the artwork presented had a story to tell. An art-piece labeled ‘Nirvana’ captured the modern world in a representative manner. A symbolic display promised and delivered aesthetic pleasure.

The day concluded with the performance by PARASHARA- a popular Delhi-based progressive band, with an idea conceived and brought to action in the mountains. The audiences swiveled to the beats as they played their melodies, revolving around the realities of life, with an interesting modern touch to it. This wraps up the Day 1 of the fest and all the festivities stuck true to the theme of the fest: “Future of Fun”.

Image credits: Mahi Panchal for DU Beat


Sakshi Arora

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Shaurya Thapa

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Kartik Chauhan

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Shivani Dadhwal

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