Manifesto Reviews 2015-16: Bipin Babu, Sports’ Affairs Secretary


This is the third article in our Manifesto Review series, where we review the tenures of IITM’s Executive Wing (consisting of 10 posts) as well as that of the SAC Speaker, for the year 2015-16. In this review we evaluate the manifesto promises of Bipin Babu, IITM’s Sports Secretary for the year 2015-16.

Note: The Manifesto Reviews team at T5E has made every effort to review the Executive Council in an unbiased manner and stay true to the facts, but it is possible that we may have made inadvertent errors. We request our readers to point out errors if any so that we may correct them immediately. Finally, we value your feedback! You can reach us at [email protected].

Vital Statistics

Manifesto Points Number Percentage
Completed 14 36.84
Ongoing 2 5.26
Incomplete 17 44.73
Difficult to place 5 13.36
Total 38 100

The same color scheme is used in the review below.

The Institute Sports Secretary acts as the students’ representative for all sports related matters. The primary duties of the post include handling all issues regarding the sports environment and scene on campus, which include but are not limited to the selection of coaches, aiding the selection of the Institute teams and organising inter-collegiate and inter-hostel matches. The Sports Secretary also acts as a link between the students and the Institute Sports Advisor, Prof. K. P. Sudheer. Moreover, the responsibility of maintaining the institute’s sports infrastructure and inventory of equipment lies with the sports secretary. Last but not the least, the authority to make amendments to the Schroter rule book and carry out the selections of the Institute captains and club captains is an important responsibility bestowed upon him.

Bipin Babu was elected unopposed to the post of Institute Sports Secretary for the academic year 2015-16. He has been involved in sports and Inter-IIT Sports Meet, as a part of the athletics team,  right from his first year, and served as Godavari Hostel’s Sports Secretary for the academic year 2014-15 before deciding to contest for the institute-wide post.

Bipin has managed an overall success rate of 36.84% with respect to the points on his manifesto, while an additional 5.26% of the points are likely to be brought to completion during his tenure. Three of his manifesto points couldn’t be completed due to miscommunication with the authorities whereas two of them couldn’t be completed due to the cancellation of the Inter IIT Sports Meet. We will be elaborating on these aspects later. The highlights of Bipin’s tenure include introducing Women’s Schroeter, which was a big hit; screening important football and cricket matches at CLT, layering of the basketball court and the installation of the synthetic track at the athletics stadium. His biggest regret, though (no surprises here) was the cancellation of the Inter IIT Sports Meet 2015 that was set to take place here, at IIT Madras.

Bipin Babu at the 56th Institute Day; fifth from the right (sitting)
Bipin Babu at the 56th Institute Day; fifth from the right (sitting)

We now take you through a brief overview and examination of Bipin’s manifesto:

Infrastructural Advancements

  • Construction of toilets in the space between the football and hockey grounds.

Status: Not Done

There was no water connection earlier but with the new plan for maintaining grass on the football ground, a new water supply system will be in place, making construction of toilets easier in the coming academic year. The move would have been completed in this academic year after the relaying of the ground, but owing to the rains the relaying process could never get completed, leaving the ground in a deteriorated state. This delayed the installation of the water supply system.

  • Placing a water cooler and keeping a well-equipped first aid kit in the space between the football and hockey grounds.

Status: Done.

Both these provisions were arranged for and have been place since the start of the academic year.

  • Renovation of badminton court floor in SAC and proper gumming of the same at regular intervals to increase the grip.

Status: Done.

The badminton court floor was renovated and gumming was carried out three times over the course of Bipin’s tenure.

  • Construction of multi-throwing rings and also install a hammer throw cage for improving the safety standards.

Status: Done.

The nets help to constrain the hammer in the arc of throwing by blocking throws that angle outside of the arc. The setup is installed at the time of events and kept inside the athletics stadium at other times to prevent any damage that it might incur.

  • Temporary nets behind goal posts in the Institute football field for football shooting practice.

Status: Not Done.

An initiative that was scheduled to be completed after the renovation of the ground, it couldn’t move forward with the rains hindering the completion of the renovation. The plan hasn’t been executed yet since the setting up of shooting nets will upset the topsoil and it can be done without diminishing the quality of the field around the goalpost only after grass has been grown on the relayed surface.

  • Construction of new practice wall for the practice of volley ball.

Status: Not Done

The wall will be constructed at the spot of the electric substation, due to be demolished, near the volleyball court. The construction is scheduled to get completed in the first few weeks of the odd semester, tentatively by the end of August.

  • Proposal for an Artificial Climbing Wall with proper safety equipments for Adventure enthusiasts.

Status: Not Done

Gaining approval was an issue on the grounds of safety as the authorities did not want to take any risk even with the use of safety equipments.

  • Setting up LED monitor in front of Himalaya, to display important updates regarding Sports.

An initiative that was partially completed as a tiny LCD monitor that was already installed at Himalaya was occasionally used to display sports updates.

New Initiatives

  • Formation of a committee of alumni members as part of SOC (Sports Organizing Committee), to garner funds for Inter IIT related issues.

Status: Done.

The sponsorship team was able to contact numerous alumni to generate funds for the Inter IIT Sports Meet. The committee was merged with the organizing team to enhance manpower. Videography of publicity stunts and publicizing through social media was also used to get in contact with the alumni.

  • Introducing “Wall of Fame” near the sports complex, where we can put up photos preserving the memories of the glorifying victories of our students.

Status: Partially Done.

The photo collage assembled by the design team is ready and the permission has been granted by the team. The Wall of Fame will be up by the start of the odd semester.

  • A wholesale and retail Sports store inside the Institute.

Status: Not Done.

The idea was run down since the retailers that were contacted didn’t think of it as a profitable venture for them.

  • Centralized Sports jersey purchase System.

Contacts of sports vendors were shared with the sports secretaries of the hostel but no consolidated effort to contact a common vendor was taken up by the existent hostel sports secretaries.

  • Introduction of the handball game by providing movable handball goal posts in Sangam.

Status: Not Done.

With the allocation of Sangam in the evening to Krishna, owing to the hostel’s quadrangle reparations, the introduction of handball couldn’t be carried out effectively.

  • Facilitating the online reservation and booking of all grounds.

Status: Not Done.

Since Sangam was the only ground available for booking, it was difficult to implement the online reservation system given that Sangam has been allocated to Krishna. With the quadrangle reparations in Krishna hostel reaching its completion, the online system will be easier to implement in the following secretary’s tenure. The institute hockey ground was in use for both semesters for the purpose of inter-collegiate tournaments, whereas the football ground was used for institute practice in the odd semester and its deteriorated condition made it unfit to play on the ground in the even semester, a case so serious that the Football Schroeter was on the verge of being called off.

  • Two new pool tables on the top floor of Sports complex.

Status: Not Done.

The proposal was not sanctioned at first and no further attempt to push forth the idea was made.

  • Introduce an intra-institute challenge-and-play ranking ladder for Chess.

Status: Done.

A list of the Institute’s Top 8 is maintained by the Institute Chess Captain. The 100+ participants that registered were split into four groups. Points were awarded for every victory and the top 2 of each group constituted the Institute Top 8.

A round of the Intra-institute chess challenge under way
A round of the Intra-institute chess challenge under way
  • Proposal for the Screening of important EPL and Champions League Matches.

Status: Done.

The proposal was directly passed by the Dean without much hesitation. A total of 3 matches were telecast, including the adrenaline filled India vs Pakistan World Cup face-off.

Institute Events and Sports Culture

  • Introduction of swimming cards on a monthly basis.

Status: Not Done.

This system won’t be in place from the next semester since it decreases the income generated by the issue of cards, especially during the vacations. This makes the maintenance of the pool a difficult task.

  • Comprehensive revamp of the Sports Organizing Committee to improve planning and organizational abilities

Status: Done.

The revamp to the committee came in the form of the Inter IIT Organizing Committee, that took over the role of the Sports Organizing Committee for the academic year 2015-16. The success was visible during the Inter IIT Aquatics Meet, that was claimed by most athletes to be the most well-organised Meet on and off the arena.

  • Introducing Institute Footer league to improve the overall participation and culture of the institute.

Status: Not Done.

Scheduling of an Institute Footer League became less likely due to densely packed sports calendar of the odd and even semester, with Inter IIT practices in the odd semester and the Schroeter and Dean’s Trophy in the even semester, along with the year wide spread of the intra hostel leagues of numerous hostels.

  • Introducing workshops for skating and pool beginners.

Status: Not Done.

Abyssmal NSO participation for skating along with the failure to arrange for the pool tables resulted in the dropping of this initiative.

  • Complete gym instructor will be recruited and will be available in the gym all the time.

Status: Partially Done.

The gym instructor was changed twice by the gymkhana owing to unsatisfactory work. However, the current gym instructor will be available in the gym next semester onwards.

  • Instituting Athletics Talent Hunt: Institute players will go to each hostel for conducting events within the hostel to discover talented athletes (mainly for throw events).

Status: Not Done.

With the athletics team being busy with their preparations, a move towards this initiative wasn’t taken at all during the odd semester. Since it was primarily for the Inter IIT, it wasn’t carried out in the even semester.

  • Revising the Schroeter rule book with the rules regarding the girls matches included in it and also other small changes.

Status: Done.

Changes were made to the rule book owing to the advent of the Women’s Schroeter. Notably, the allocation of day scholars to the hostel for the Schroeter was one of the highlights in terms of rule amendments. Football, in previous editions, was the full length field sport even for the girls, but it was shifted to Sangam this year.

  • Increasing the number of EMLs by eminent sports personas, in association with EML team.

Status: Not Done.

A host of sports related personalities including famous sportspersons such as Deepika Pallikal and Dhanraj Pillai had been roped in as part of the Inter IIT lecture series, which couldn’t take place owing to the washing out of the Main Meet.

  • Monthly meeting of Sports Secretaries where the attendance will be made mandatory to an extent and failing which will result the hostel being disallowed to participate in some events.

Status: Not Done.

The expected frequency of the meetings could never be met. There were no meetings in the odd semester owing to Inter IIT preparation, whereas the even semester saw a total of four meetings being held, with no punishment being levied against the absentees. The attendance for all meetings was above 75%.

  • Recognition for Institute players as well as Schroeter winners in various sports with use of Social media as well as publicity team.

Institute players did not receive much social media coverage, however, social media coverage was extended to many sports such as volleyball, weightlifting and badminton among others. This is the facebook page for the sports’ updates.

  • Introducing Publicity, Newsletter and Media team under the newly structured SOC team which can be effectively used to publicize the sports activities and encourage talents to come forward.

Status: Done.

This initiative was with respect to the Inter IIT Sports Meet and the newsletter title, ‘Re:Play’, was printed by for the Aquatics Meet after Day 1 and Day 3.

Videos on the Inter IIT Meet highlights and a call to the institute to be a part of the contingent and the organising team were made by the Inter IIT Design Team and IITM TV.  The videos can be found here and here. While this is where you can find a copy of the newsletter.

PG and Freshie Participation

  • Proper orientation regarding sports activities for PG students during the institute Orientation sessions.

Status: Done.

The sports orientation for PG freshers and UG freshers was carried out together in the second week of the odd semester. It definitely went a long way in guiding students, as was highlighted by the performance of Krishna, Brahmaputra and Mahanadhi.

Brahmaputra, the surprise of the Schroeter, owing to the effective sports guidance provided to PG students
Brahmaputra, the surprise of the Schroeter, owing to the effective sports guidance provided to PG students
  • Freshers to be allotted to different Sports secretaries and be given fundaes on various Sports activities prior to NSO selections especially in Hockey and Weightlifting.

Status: Not Done.

Couldn’t be carried out as it would reduce the number of participating hostels in the Schroeter and would dilute the competition in the Schroeter, given how well the freshie hostels performed this year.

Inter IIT 2015, IIT Madras

  • Organization: Forming a multi-tier Inter IIT organizing team for handling the whole meet.

Status: Done.

A structured student organization was established for the purpose of conducting the Inter IIT Sports Meet 2015. The Inter IIT Organizing team was a 244-member strong team. The Organising team was headed by the Sports Secretary and two organizing heads. The Core Team consisted of 12 members and the rest comprised of coordinators. The ground staff also played a vital part in maintaining the quality of the playing fields.

  • Information: Distribute pamphlet with campus maps and local information guide.

Status: Done.

All of the 10 visiting contingents were provided with an institute map along with a local information guide for each member of the contingent.

  • For Updates: Setting up electronic screens at various venues to update scores and results.

Status: Done.

Both the functional electronic screens were used at the pool to display the score of water polo matches. The electronic board was installed for the purpose of displaying the score.

  • Introduction of Kho-Kho and Women’s football in INTER IIT as non-competitive event.

Status: Not Done.

  • Carnival Zone at SAC active during the nights for the relaxation of Inter IIT players.

The zone was planned to be established during the Main Meet, with an Inter IIT Informals team in place. However, this couldn’t be carried out owing to the cancellation of the main meet.

  • Ensuring smooth work between PTI’s and captains.

Status: Done.

Constant interaction between captains and PTI’s with regards to infrastructural and contingent needs enabled the running of a smooth system.

  • Summer camp during July for Inter IIT participants.

Status: Not Done.

An idea not taken forward as not every member of the eventual team would be a part of the summer camp.

  • Certificates for all those who attend the Inter IIT Mini camp.

Certificates couldn’t be distributed to the athletes since the Inter IIT Mini Camp was called off owing to the rains.

Bipin at the '51st Inter IIT Sports' Meet' Board Meeting
Bipin at the ’51st Inter IIT Sports’ Meet’ Board Meeting

Overall, working through a tenure with more ups and downs than usual, Bipin amassed a success rate of 39.28% against a 44.73% failure rate in terms of completing manifesto points. He introduced the day scholar allocation system and conducted the intra-institute chess competition successfully, but a few points of great value such as the Athletics Talent Hunt, which would have helped the contingent immensely, and the EML series by sportspersons are the things that many had looked forward to but didn’t take off. Bipin passed on the baton to Sethu Madhavan on Institute Day. We wish him the best of luck.

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