Cultural exchange has always been an integral part of our democratic nation. By definition, it is an exchange of students, artists, athletes etc., between two countries to promote mutual understanding. NITR had the privileged opportunity of hosting a cultural exchange program with Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Singapore this year. But has this premiere Indian institute lived up to the saying “athithi devo bhava” (The guest is equivalent to God)?
The Cultural Evening
The program kicked off at 7:30pm with greetings in four different languages. Dignitaries from both institutes addressed the audience and spoke of developing friendly relations.
The cultural bonanza commenced with Cinematics’s popular video “Happy NITR” followed by a group dance wherein 35-40 dancers grooved to western music in perfect coordination. The dramatic solo dance by NITR student Pawan Kalyan was succeeded by a Bharatnatyam performance on “Breathless”. After another Singaporean group dance stint, Cinematics was back with their short film “Wonder Woman”. Students of Ngee Ann Polytechnic sung two of their favorite patriotic songs “Our Flag” and “We are one Singapore”. To match up to their melodies, NITR students presented the popular song “Tum hi ho”. Tabla performance by Krishna Sharath was followed by a stupendous, well-choreographed and energetic ramp walk by the Singaporeans and a peppy solo dance. The evening concluded with a speech by the delegates followed by students grooving to numbers like “Balam Pichkari” and “Get Low”.
Students Take on the exchange program
Students of Ngee Ann Polytechnic told MM that the student exchange program was helpful in understanding the culture and ethnicity of India, which cannot be taught and has to be experienced. The students mentioned that they had a lot of fun playing holi and making rangolis. They felt that they could have interacted more with NITians. They also suggested that an outing with the student community to help them interact better.
It was a bit inconvenient for them to get accustomed to the hot climate and NITR being a huge campus, a lot of walking was required. As they are not used to spicy delicacies, it took some time to get used to it.
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