Besides the government and voluntary organisations, college students have also tried to pitch in several ways to make a difference to the victims of flood ravaged Uttarakhand. To raise funds they organised 'Pukaar' -- a five-day painting exhibition at New Delhi’s Dilli Haat.
The event attracted large numbers and while some lent their paintings, others bought them, thanks to their affordable price tags which ranged between Rs. 500 to Rs. 5000.
To add to the fund raising, the students also set up street musical performances, live portraits, sale of homemade chocolates, each student trying to make the best use of his or her talent.
The event was an initiative by students, most of whom are members of Artists At Work (AAW) Productions, a digital art organisation launched a month ago by Rahul Maheshwari, a student of Delhi University. “My passion for designing and videography made me realise that there is a need for a platform which can propel students to learn and excel in digital art. Pukaar wouldn't have been possible without this platform", said Rahul.
He also added “Choosing social media has proved to be a great decision for reaching out to the maximum number of people and making them aware about Pukaar in such a short time. As a result we have been able to gather a large amount to help the Uttrakhand victims.”
Though a brick and mortar event, students kept emphasising that it was the power of social media that made people turn up at the event in hundreds.
Sakshi Fotedar, a student associated with 'Pukaar' said, “Social and digital media has been of a great help in organising 'Pukaar'. We not only succeeded in generating awareness about our initiative but were also able to attract a zillion people to the event."
While another member, Shambhavi Bajaj felt that the familiarity of the youth with digital media turned out to be a great advantage. We marketed the initiative well through social networking sites and the result is for everyone to see."
Despite the scorching heat and day long tedious work, these students not only managed to gather a substantial amount for the Uttarakhand flood victims, but also made it an astounding success.
Besides being able to contribute to a national calamity, the event has helped to make students realise that their strength lies in numbers and that they are capable of changing several things around them if they come together, said an onlooker and participant.