You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘REC’ tag.

REC, 1986, Election season. There are not many things I would like to remember from that period of blood, sweat and tears except perhaps the deep bonds of friendship we forged under fire…and my first logo.


Flashback: After the suspension/ police action that happened in our first year, it was rumoured that politicos refused to help sort out the issue because the student-body was apolitical. Anyway, soon after that NSUI and SFI units were formed in REC, and nothing would ever be the same again.


I was in B224 during the period, with Paramu, Jackie and Binod Ramakrishnan. I was a little upset about this whole politics thing, and one evening while Paramu was mugging, I had this – to use a Sangham phrase – sudden brilliant idea, ‘Let us start a movement to fight party politics in campus…Engineering Students Council Against Political Exploitation, ESCAPE for short, the tagline would be ‘Escape with us” and the logo, the letters e-s-c-a-p-e stacked to form a stairway to heaven…’


I don’t remember what exactly Paramu’s response to my idea was, but it was something on the lines of ‘smirk!’ (expression of disgust, said out loud, not a facial expression). But that very evening we were called to Thadian Vinod’s room, and briefed about the launch of…a movement that fights party politics in campus. I told him about Escape, Thadian told me the objective was not to form another party…RIP Escape.


We fought two elections under Thadian, unofficially called Anti-Pols (the world referred to us as Andi Poliyans). By the time we reached the final year, we adopted a less-confrontational name, Non-Pol, and during the election season I created the Non-Pol logo, and not that anybody cared, the logo grid.




Over the years I have had the good fortune to moonlight as a graphic designer and create logos for products, events, awards, etc. Here are my personal favourites…


CD Check Valve. Inspired by the product. Sajeev helped refine the logo. Thanks.





Theme for 2007-08. We had the budget confab in Manali. The logo combines the contours of the hills and a growth graph (The rhyme would work only in Australia)





Logo for silver jubilee stockists. The letters 2 and 5 merge to form a valve icon.




Event logo. Started as a scribble on a napkin…





Face-to-Face. Customer Interface Programme. I was trying to fit the two Fs together and the ‘2’ suddenly popped up and hit me. 


Sadanandan of REC Mess passed away. He apparantely lost his footing while crossing a kaana between hostels, hit his head against a concrete slab and died on the spot. He is survived by his wife and 2 kids.

I understand a fund has been created to help Sadanandan’s family. In case you would like to send in a contribution, the details…

Late Sadanandan Fund
c/o. Prof. Sathidevi, #205 Electronic Block, NIT Calicut 673601
State Bank of India, NIT Calicut (2207), CREC Campus, Chathamangalam, Calicut 673601
Account Number: 30555201351, Control: 3576531 2207 30555201351 05/11/08

RIP Sadanandan.

I met Pauli, my REC classmate, C 303 roommate and L&T colleague, a few months ago. Couple of rounds, and we couldn’t stop talking about the good old days – the fights, police cases, suspensions, lost friends, lost causes…man, college was serious fun.

Paul was our batch’s diarist, and his diary was more famous than Anne Frank’s. He was an early exponent of magic realism and had a dedicated fan following on campus. For a long time Joef and I contemplated stealing the diaries – that was when we were working on ‘Shaft: The Non-Pol Story’ – too bad we didn’t.

I don’t know if Paul has preserved those diaries (new wife and old diaries don’t mix well). Let me talk to Paul – guess I can work out a deal to syndicate his diaries…or let us hit him with the RTI or something.

Now you know why the Non-Pol story was called Shaft…

REC was a pain. The classes, I mean. And most of us attended only just enough classes to qualify for the exams.

In 4th sem, I bunked so many classes in the beginning, that in the second half, I needed to attend all the remaining classes – and then some – to touch the magical 75% mark. To cut a long story short, thanks to my friends in the various clubs, I managed some duty leave and scraped through.

Attended: 66.12%
Duty Leave: 10.11%
Total: 76.23%.

The drama is all there in my attendance record. The early wickets, the asking-rate piling up, the tail-end heroics, the victory…would make a nice movie…

Final Year. D Hostel Loo…

Binu & Sivan

Everybody calls him Patta. Perhaps, like he explained to his mom when she intercepted a letter from me addressed to Patta, because he is a Pattar. He was tall, dark and handsome. OK, tall and dark; two out of three is not bad…(sorry, old REC gag). He used to sleep in a hammock, was a pioneer in electronic eavesdropping, could drum and sing equally well and was a pal.

But it was when we returned to REC as Freedom Fighters that Sivan and I became close. And mauling our Bengali Dada in Kattangal, high on Cherunni’s, is a fond memory from our re-engineering period.

After I moved to Chennai, Patta used to come over once in a way and we always had a good time – death-defying stunts on my bike, noon show in Blue Diamond, night show in Shanti, those were the days… The he married from Chennai, and stopped coming to Chennai.

But we are still in touch, and late in the evening, when I feel sad and lonely – or just plain drunk – it is always Sivan that I call, and at times, vice versa

In the beginning there was ragging. Then suspension and samaram. The college authorities refused to budge and the students decided to storm the DB.

Next scene. Exterior. REC campus. Mid-morning. Students being chased and pummelled by cops. Cut.

We regrouped in our hostels, built barricades, laid traps, locked the gates and waited for the attack…Then the cops left the campus, and the students celebrated by wrecking the workshops and labs (Sometimes, I guess there just aren’t enough rocks. Ask Forrest Gump). When the adrenalin subsided we sneaked out through B Hostel kitchen, scaled the wall, stopped a passing bus and left for Calicut.

Guess Shakeel and Sreeku were with me. Our plan was to take the night train to Cochin. A lot of time to kill, instead of hanging around the railway station – who will chat with Mech guys, anyway? – we decided to go for a movie…After we left, the cops came and rounded up all RECC-ians waiting in the railway station. Earlier, all the guys who stayed back in the hostels had been taken into custody.

We were lucky to escape on that day. But we took many years to exorcise the demons spawned that day…

Once, the night before a 3rd sem exam, when black coffee and cold showers couldn’t keep us awake, Vinu, Pattar and I tried a desperate measure – ‘dry shave’, hoping the cuts and nicks will ward off sleep long enough for us to read our portions. It didn’t work for me – FM became the first paper I ‘skooted’

For Vinu, shaving at 3 am in the dark B hostel loo was definitely a moment of epiphany – he cleaned up his act and never mugged with me again!

I was always in touch with Vinu, except for that brief while when he went back to REC (and you know what happened to him there). Over the years, whenever we jammed, we would talk about Paramu’s whereabouts – he had this habit of disappearing from our batch radar every few years.

Then two years ago, Paramu resurfaced in Chennai. It was like old times, we dropped in at Vinu’s place at midnight, woke up Paul at 2 am, partied till dawn – too bad Kathi was not around…


The more we change…
Civil Suresh, Appappan, Paramu, Babu, Vinu, Outside D-321, 1987


Chicku was my junior in college, and the photo above was snapped in his room on Non-Pol Avenue, during our batch’s final countdown.
(There is a story behind all that brown paper on the walls, do ask me some time)

We shared a passion for quizzing and movies. And during my 8th sem study leave (and Chicku’s 7th), when the whole hostel was in hyper kuth mode, we used to have these never ending movie quizz sessions (Mick Martin & Marsha Porter, Thank you!). Our other common interests included music, books, quizzing, partying and chorichil, and we had had a great time together.

Chicku always used to say RIP, and he was right.


Blog Stats

  • 87,070 hits
May 2020