Monday, October 26, 2009


Diwali - The festival which is revered as the most sacred as well as the most fun-filled one in India. The festival signifies the beginning of a prosperous year, the victory of good over evil, the spreading of light to disperse the darkness in our lives and who can forget the delicious food and delicacies prepared by our moms.
Before nostalgia sets in, let me tell you guys about the Diwali Puja which took place on campus.

This year GISO hosted the Diwali puja along with ISA to bring together all Indian students and celebrate Diwali, thanks to the kindness & generosity of Dr.Durga Agarwal who came forward with the idea of a Diwali puja. Equally enthusiastic was Dr.Suresh Khator who, along with President Renu Khator ensured that the event was one of the finest in recent times.

Legend says that the Goddess of wealth Lakshmi visits Earth on Diwali and brings prosperity to her worshipers. So people clean their houses and adorn it with flowers, lights and rangoli. A traditionally decorated hall greeted the guests and adding to the festive spirit was the wide array of colors displayed in the Indian ethnic clothes worn by the students. The beautiful Rangoli at the entrance captured everybody's attention thanks to the efforts of the girls who made it. The function started with the Lakshmi puja. The sacred hymns and chants lent a peaceful, holy ambiance which rekindled the feeling of being in a temple. It transports you to a different world where you get spiritual peace.

As guests started pouring in, there was a profusion of joyful greetings. The curiosity and interest which the foreigners showed in the puja amazed me. They were eager to know about each of the rituals performed during the puja. They were all ears to hear the stories and legends associated with Diwali which we were happy to share. A delicious Indian lunch which followed the puja offered a perfect respite to the cravings for Indian food.

This Diwali gave me the satisfaction of celebrating it in the authentic Indian style (with only the firecrackers missing, i guess). I hope the others had the same feel- good factor lingering in them. Wish you all a very Happy Diwali!!

P.S. Our excited web administrator could not contain his joy and uploaded the photos and videos of the event the very next day. Check them out at our website's gallery.

Friday, October 9, 2009


Parichay – the time of the year when fun, frolic & masti was high in the air and everybody had a rocking time. This year, Parichay attained a new height with the event going Housefull. The tickets were completely sold out before the event and we were overwhelmed by the response of the crowd. Thanks a million for your support!!!

The show started with the best moves of Shantanu & Shreyasee. They are the dance legends at UH and no show can be complete without them. Okay, it was a show for the freshers, so stealing away the limelight from the legends, the freshers jumped onto the stage and danced to foot tapping numbers. Boy, I must say we have got a very talented & energetic bunch of new students who gave spectacular performances on stage.

Remember the song “Dil hai chota sa” from the movie Roja?? It always makes me nostalgic of my childhood and it was made more beautiful by Deepthi who sang the song in an amazing mix of Hindi, Telugu and Tamil. It was soulful and captured the true essence of India - the diverse culture. Rohan and Shaunak also captivated the audience with their songs and got the audience singing to their tunes.

The real fun was the games round. Tribal Queen game was where the audience had to choose one person from their table and dress him up with newspaper and other decorations. The winner was the Statue of Uday who was dressed up with a crown on his head and even a torch in his hand. The other game was Longest Chain where the team had to make a chain with whatever was available with them. (I could even see a pair of socks in the The group from Houston Bridges made a chain which went half way around the hall and they bagged the prize!

The Mr & Miss Parichay contest was all about being smart and witty on stage where the participants had to introduce themselves in a hatke way & were asked naughty questions by the judges – Shilpa, Raashi and Vijay. And we got some really smart and hilarious answers. Rohan & Katha were crowned the Mr & Miss Parichay for their cool attitude and talents.

And Oh! Who could forget the Mismatch contest which was held at the beginning of the show? The people who turned up at the contest were extremely creative. A shoe on one foot, a heeled sandal on the other, a necktie around the head, a colorful beach shirt coupled with formal boots, it was fashion at its mismatched best.

Adding to the fun were the anchors – Saumitra, Fabian, Spoorthi and Madhura who were taking a dig at the “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus” phrase. Finally there was the Jam session when people let their hair down and danced to the best of Bollywood songs. Had a gala time dancing with the enthusiastic crowd. It was a refreshing change to party hard in the middle of a semester. And to cherish this memorable time, we took lots of pictures. Check them out at the photo gallery of our website!!