This weekend when you walk into the SIES College, you will be greeted by a large Shivaji statue and two Maratha soldiers blowing into their tutaris or Maharashtrian bugles.
This is the gateway to a unique three-day exhibition inaugurated by the Sion-based college on Thursday evening, to celebrate the colleges’ golden jubilee, which coincides with the formation of the state.
The exhibition, open to the public from January 22 to 24, is themed on the rich heritage and history of Maharashtra.
“When SIES was inaugurated in 1960, the state’s first chief minister, Y.B. Chavan, called it a “gift” from the South Indian community to the new-born Maharashtra,” said Principal Harsh Mehta.
Fifty years later, the departments of the college have collaborated with the state to showcase every aspect of Maharashtrian life — from literature and tourism to commerce and sports.
To enrich the exhibition, which the college has been working on for six months, the state archives department has provided more than 400 exclusive photographs and posters about the state.
The literature segment, for instance, contains scanned copies of the original handwritten works of the Maharashtrian saints Tukaram and Dyaneshwar.
“Today, many Maharashtrians themselves don’t know much about their state, so we wanted to give an educational and academic dimension to the event,” said vice-principal Gayathri Narayan.
On Friday, the exhibition will be accompanied with a daylong seminar commemorating the Maharashtrian-South Indian interaction that has contributed significantly to the state.
Some of the papers to be presented by scholars include ‘Forgotten Maratha migrants to the South’ and ‘Influence of Tamil culture and people on Maharashtra’.