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IIT hostels demystified

From making the most of tiny spaces to indulging in intellectual discussions, here’s what happens in the living quarters of India’s premier institution
Hindustan Times | By Ritanshu Kashyap, Mumbai
UPDATED ON AUG 28, 2012 02:54 PM IST

If you’re an outstation student living on campus, your life begins to grow around your hostel. And it is amazing how one gets accustomed to the confines of a hostel room in no time. One learns to accommodate, stay independently and interact with people from diverse backgrounds. In that sense, I think your hostel characterises, and to a great extent, even defines how you lead your student life. Here’s a sneak peek of life inside the boys’ residential quarters in IIT Bombay, Powai.

1 Rooms: With a maximum capacity of eight seated people and four large pizzas, size has always been a concern. But you learn to live with it and, over time, even make the most of it.

2 People: It’s not the hostel but its inmates who bring life into the daily humdrum of college life. IIT hostels are characterised by the congregation of intellectuals and pseudo-intellectuals who have discussions that run late into the night, their futile attempts at cooking edible snacks, not to mention the pre-exam day panic among students and all that goes into the fascinating prospect of having your friends around you at all times.

3 Freedom: No discussion on hostel life is complete without throwing in terms like ‘freedom’ and ‘independence’. Though lacking in space and privacy, one does get the all the time in the world for the pursuit of happiness here in order to make the most of college time.

4 Mess Food: Avoid. Whenever possible. They serve yellow water on Tuesdays and claim it’s curry. But it’s the perfect place for joyful conversations.

5 Girls: Girls are a rare species on IIT campus. The sex-ratio in the institution is probably the lowest in the whole of India.

Ritanshu Kashyap is a chemical engineering (fourth year) student at IIT-B, Powai.

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