Update, February 2005: There is now an "official" Spring Fest page.
Spring Fest is held every year on the weekend closest to Republic day, 26th January. It is a three day long inter-college social and cultural festival. Colleges are invited from all over the country and a large number of people arrive in Kharagpur for this enjoyable event.
Organization: Spring Fest is organised by the Technology Students Gymkhana. For its smooth running, a bunch of committees are set up which are headed by a steering committee. The various committees are involved in diverse issues such as reception, transportation, food, accomodation, decoration and then finally the committees involved with the events themselves. The events include dramatics, western and eastern music (solo/group, instrumental/vocal), Just A Minute, Perpendiculars, professional performances, dramatics & literary events etc.
The SF Arena: Spring fest is held in the area between and including Netaji auditorium, the OAT, the institute side gate and the Department of Architecture. A large number of food stalls are set up by enterprising youngsters and some professional caterers. Food for the participants is provided free of cost in the OAT canteen. The control tent sits somewhere near the OAT and this is the place where the organisational structure of the reception, transportation and inventory committees is centered.
Open Air Theatre (Thanks: Venkat Chalasani)
EventsPanel discussion: The first day of the festival usually features a panel discussion with prominent personalities from different parts of India. The topic of discussion is usually a current "hot" topic of interest. The different personalities to have graced the occasion include N. Ram, Ronnie Screwala and the indefatigable Russi Mody to name a few. This event is held in the OAT.
Photograph taken from behind the panel on the stage (Thanks: Sanjeev Gupta)
Eastern professional programme: Usually, there is a professional performance in eastern music or dance on the second day of the festival. The institute has seen many professional artists including Jagjit and Chitra Singh, Zakir Hussain and Allah Rakha, Anup Jalota, Hari Prasad Chaurasia to name a few. These performances are usually attended by a large number of people from the city. This event is held in the OAT.
Photograph of the stage showing the institute tower in the background (Thanks: Sanjeev Gupta)
Perpendiculars: Perpendiculars are fun events for the general populace requiring no special talents and designed for general fun. They include such fun events as advertisement contests, the ever popular "Made for each other" contest which features some of the love birds at the festival, dumb charades, the bizarre smoking contest to name a few.
Dramatics/Literary events: The dramatics and literary events are usually held in three languages - english, hindi and bengali. The events include competitions in the categories of plays, choreography, debates, elocution etc.
Western and eastern solo/instumental: These events are held in quiet corners of the institute and one has to be really interested to go look for them. The audience is treated to a delightful mix of acoustic and vocal music. As compared to the Wildfire competition, these events lack the glamour but they bring out some of the best talent at the festival.
JAM: Another very popular event is the Just A Minute (JAM) competition. This is an event where a person's speaking and creative skills are tested. Every "round" lasts one minute of speaking time in which the participants are given a topic to banter on. The idea is to interrupt a speaker whenever he/she makes a grammatical, syntactical or usage error. It can also be done if the speaker seems to borrow someone else's idea or an old idea within a round. Every time a justifiable interruption is made, the interrupter gets a point and gets the microphone. For any wrong interruptions, a point is deducted and the interruptee is allowed to continue. The person with the maximum number of points at the end of the session wins.
Behind the OAT (Thanks: Kundan Sen)
Wildfire: Wildfire is the inter-college western music competition and is held on the last night of the festival. The prelims are held on the first and second day of the festival. In the prelims, the groups have to perform three songs of their choice followed by the judges' choice (taken from a list given by the participants). The final six groups perform for around fifty minutes each (including setup time) on the final night of the festival. This is a great occasion and the experience is awesome!