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Marathon mission

india Updated: Mar 19, 2009 18:05 IST
Prema K
Prema K
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

While on the one hand, we hear of an increase in crime rate among youth, on the other hand we come across the youth of our country assuming responsibilities.

We’re already familiar with iVote, a student organisation formed last year, which encourages students to vote.

Then last Sunday morning, I came across a bunch of kids running a race. A little further on, I saw a couple of teenagers, wearing yellow T-shirts with ‘ICT Marathon’ sprawled across in bright green.

On asking around, I learnt that it was a mini marathon organised by students of ICT (Institute of Chemical Technology, formerly UDCT), in association with NGOs like Akanksha, CRY, Sunday Friends and Rahul Bose’s The Foundation.

So chilled-out
The event had been coordinated by four ICTians; Vineet Jain, Tushar Ranjan, Kaveesh Nandwana and Sneha Chide.

Now, ICT is one the premier institutes of the country that draws top-rankers. So this did sound interesting. The foursome appears to be quite a chilled-out gang but admit to having been a bundle of nerves before the event.

Tushar laughs, “We were very tense, especially the day before the event. We would snap at anyone who even came to talk to us. We wanted the entire thing to go off smoothly.”

Learning experience
Vineet adds, “But it was a great feeling at the end, except for the fact that the girls cribbed a bit because Rahul Bose didn’t turn up at the last moment.”

The event involved a month of hectic preparation — drawing up proposals, chasing sponsors and getting police permission, besides organising volunteers to visit prominent places like Worli sea face, parks, coffee shops, schools and colleges, in a bid to get people to run the marathon.

And they managed to rope in 500 participants in the age group of three to 75. Phew! That sure sounds like a lot of work.
“Yeah, but it was a great learning experience,” Kaveesh states. The foursome is unaffected by the fact that this meant missing out on lectures and studies taking a backseat.

Future leaders
Vineet laughs, “We don’t study throughout the year. We can cope with last minute studies. But what we learn while organising events is something we would never learn in a classroom or from textbooks. All this is worth scoring a few lesser marks.”

Tushar adds, “This will groom us into becoming future organisers and leaders and will hold us in good stead when we apply for jobs. A few years from now, we’ll be working and have other responsibilities as well. So we want to make the most of these four years.”

Even the more serious and quiet Sneha nods in agreement and says. “Besides shaping our personalities, these are memories which we will carry with us for life.”