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Memoir: Wonderland IITR

July 9, 2023
- Deepal Tiwari

To fit these four years into a memoir, I am not sure. There is so much to tell – The people, the experiences, and the emotions. While I am still realizing that it is over and gone, here are certain highlights from my time at IITR. No matter what I write, it will not do justice, because it cannot, nothing can. But because of how much I owe this place, it is worth trying.

I have divided the entire journey into 4 parts – DebSoc, UBA, Best of Friends, and the wonderland IIT R. These pretty much sum up what college was all about for me. Pardon me if I got too obvious or detailed in certain places. They were a little too crucial to skip.

DebSoc –

I still remember the time of my recruitment. My faith in the debating experience from school got lower with each passing round as I got closer to knowing that this was a different ballgame altogether. Initially, just being amidst a crowd that seemed too good to be true was awe-inspiring. It wasn’t just the skill you see, but every common interest in the community that I desperately wanted to inculcate into myself bit by bit – from things like the habit of reading nice stuff to the passion for bottomless discussions on almost anything at any time (not to mention that the debating mode had no time out even back then). But then, of course, it wasn’t all highs. Nothing was more devastating than not reaching the final rounds of tournaments after almost five merciless rounds of debating each time. It was long before I started to appreciate the learnings from mere participation and even longer before tournaments became some of the best spent weekends during campus life. Debsoc has contributed a lot to my development throughout these years. It wasn’t limited to the knowledge I gained about university debating, the concepts of feminism, international relations, politics, etc. that I got thorough with or the ability to back up my thoughts with analysis and reasoning in every situation that came my way. Debsoc enabled me to build upon my strengths and push my capabilities toward achieving every small and big milestone. From everyday arguments, and course presentations to internship and eventually naukri, it helped me in every possible way I could be helped as an undergraduate.

Last, but not least, it gave me really good friends – Never knew that the group where skill was the major driving force for me to come to, would become my happy comfort place. Thank you for not only teaching me the art that I am unapologetically proud of but making me a home that I would love to come back to any day (soon, I hope). Anyways, I promise to always be connected to the soil, only if you promise that the tribe that loves babies continues to grow.


Unnat Bharat Abhiyan was the place where I had my first true ice-breaking after coming to college. My first visit to our village Beladi still tops the list of the most amusing times I have had at IITR. I remember an incident from that day when we were thrown out of a house because a survey with a woman had gone wrong. Someone who must not be named mistakenly asked the question about whether she had any children after she had already told us that she wasn’t married. That and every visit that followed, was no less than therapy for me. UBA gave me exposure to the developmental challenges in rural stretches, an opportunity that I never had before becoming a part of it. Every occasion that required me to come out of my comfort zone became a reality checkpoint. All communication skills fell short each time a farmer had to be convinced of adopting better agricultural practices, a conservative rural family had to be motivated to normalize menstruation or a local government body had to be asked for their help in an initiative. Through UBA, I befriended some of the most determined people I have ever come across. Every time a good idea was dropped due to its unfeasibility or an initiative didn’t turn out as planned, there could have been room for the enthusiasm to cease because, after all, any student body can only do enough. But the team (especially some members from my junior years) never fell prey to the despair and gave some extraordinary results with their work in vermicomposting, self-help groups, water filtration, and so much more. I feel grateful to the group for the most supportive seniors I could ever wish for, for letting me be an exception to our otherwise uncompromising punctuality, for my very own “Samarthya”, for some of the most enjoyable trips that I have ever had, and for the bestestest title. From being irritated by even the slight mention of “Raajmaata” to my eyes lighting up every time I heard a new version of it, we came a long way. I feel I kind of have been spoilt by the overwhelming care and effort that this group shows for an individual, especially in the last year. I have seen everything with you. From learning to party like crazy to sitting back and vibing to “humein zinda rehne do ae husnawaalon”. Dher saara pyaar and aashirvaad.

Best of friends

Firstly, the ones that I have earned and who shall stay beyond this journey, with whom these few months or years were not enough, no time can be enough. I can’t wait to find them again – to laugh insanely, argue endlessly, fight passionately, and shed those tears which were concealed in the hope of the goodbyes not being final. I don’t deserve some of you’ll, honestly. I can’t thank you enough for being the most understanding friends, for choosing me every time, for not leaving my side no matter what hardships that caused in your ways, and for never giving up on me and our friendships. Surviving engineering became so much easier with you. I love you all so much. Thank you for existing, for being you, and for everything. Secondly, those incomparable bonds that didn’t last long. Only gratitude and love for the beautiful memories that we share. Even if it can’t be the same and it can’t get all good, souvenirs just can’t be gotten rid of now, can they? Maybe because they are the only expressions left of the unsaid words and the silent farewells.

Wonderland IITR

This place has taught me a lot. It made me realize the importance of balance and prioritization in all sorts of ways. A low cg closed doors no matter how deserving I thought I was and low compassion cost me peace and people. At the same time, it reminded me of my capabilities – From things like planning and executing a fest within a fortnight (Samarthya gave so much Samarthya) or a terrific BTP presentation right after a horrifying nauseous morning (thanks to the overwhelming debsoc farewell) to big picture stuff like an intern, naukri, etc., you made it all possible by instilling the necessary confidence. I will forever be in debt to you for being the platform where I cultivated my strengths and found the right opportunities to play upon them. You taught me to choose the right battles. From trying too hard to cope with almost everyone and everything be it people, groups, or situations to accepting the core me, defining what I want, and finding a few comfort companions. If I am told to go back in time, when my 18-year-old self used to struggle through the mock tests of jee and one of the evergreen sources of motivation used to be that picture of the main building on the wall (I had such a thing for the ”White Building” since time immemorial, I don’t know why), and if I am asked, “Will it all be worth it”. Yes, yes it will be. I can never thank IIT Roorkee enough for making me what I am, whatever I am. 1st year 1st year 1st year1st year1st year