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‘Ragam' gets an ethnic taste

Staff Reporters
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NIT-C cultural festival enters third day

Wonder food : A scene from the ethnic food festival at the Ragam cultural festival at NIT-C in Kozhikode on Friday.— Photo: by special arrangement
Wonder food : A scene from the ethnic food festival at the Ragam cultural festival at NIT-C in Kozhikode on Friday.— Photo: by special arrangement

: The annual cultural festival of the National Institute of Technology Calicut (NITC) entered its third day on Friday, attracting hundreds of students from different colleges in south India.

The day began with an onstage replica of the Rosebowl's talking point, which saw a group of youngsters discussing some of the most relevant and contemporary issues in society.

Treat with a difference

N. Vellan, tribal chieftain from the Nellarachal Kuruma colony in Wayanad district, was virtually in wonderland while serving his ethnic cuisines to the new generation gourmands on campus. It was the first time that Vellan and his team enjoyed the beauty of a big campus like NIT-C. “The students really surprised us with their love for the ethnic dishes and the way we prepared the items for them,” said Vellan in an exhilarated mood. The 59-year-old amusingly looked at the budding engineers, who came up with lots of enthusiasm and patiently sat on a tiny bench to savour a different taste that he lovingly served them.

Vellan stepped into the campus on Thursday with a task to tickle the taste buds of youngsters with around 48 ethnic cuisines. His wife, Gouri, and daughter, Shyamala, too had accompanied him to make the show a hit among the students. The couple prepared around 20 varieties of ethnic food items on Thursday and Friday.

‘Mulayaripayasam,' ‘Chama Payasam' and ‘Kalluputtu' were some of the items served by the tribespeople. A five-member student team from the NIT-C also came to support the tribespeople ply their trade.

All delicacies, except Mulayari Payasam, were served at Rs.6 at the ethnic food court. “We charged Rs.12 for the Mulayaripayasam as the raw materials for its preparation are rare and costly,” Vellan said.

The tribal chieftain said his team would serve a novel item, pumpkin payasam' on the campus on Saturday. “We will serve it to students at just Rs.10,” he said.

Vellan and his team put up their outlets following the guidance of the Kerala Institute for Research, Training and Development of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (KIRTADS). S. Bindu, who coordinated the programme for KIRTADS, said the initiative was part of making the tribespeople confident of their work with maximum professionalism. “Now they wear gloves, head caps and mask to assure maximum cleanliness in the working ambiance,” she said.

Day of entertainment

The running event titled ‘Paithrkam', which included an exhibition of photographs and documents related to the history of the NITC, staging of traditional art forms such as Ottanthullal, Daff Mutt and Kolkali, besides a food festival dishing out traditional food varieties of tribesmen was a big draw.

Couples had their day of fun, participating in a salsa workshop conducted on the campus as part of the festival.

Competitions in tableau, overacting, movie spoof, and ad-zap were the other attractions of the day besides competitions in Extempore, Jam, Mock Press and debates.

The day's entertainment was capped by a stunning performance by singer Sunidhi Chauhan at the open auditorium.

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