Secretary Review: Cultural Affairs Secretary (Literary) – Supreet Hegde


You’ll find the other manifesto reviews here.

The colour code used in this review works like this:

  • Green – completed already

  • Yellow– partially completed and/or will most likely be completed before end of tenure

  • Red – not completed, or left to future Secretaries

Clubs and LitSoc


1.    Postgraduate participation in cultural activities:

The post graduate participation in cultural activities saw a rise this year. The Cultural club secretaries and the events cores came up with the idea of an inter-department festival (Mishram) rather than an inter-hostel festival for the PG students. The event was partially successful (the music and dance events witnessed a decent turnout, but the others weren’t as popular). Mishram happened in the first week of March (3rd-12th). The events were scheduled specifically around their free time which contributed to the increase in participation.

2.      Getting freshers involved:

The clubs had a joint orientation session, which was quite a success in terms of numbers showing up, but whether this actually increased freshie involvement in lit-soc is debatable. Generally, the clubs witnessed a rise in non-competitive events this year (it should be noted that this wasn’t the case with all clubs, and we mustn’t discount the initiative of individual club conveners when gauging club activity)

‘Freshie Litsoc’ was scrapped as it was not much of a success last year.

3.      Inclusive initiatives by clubs:

The annual magazine consisting of the best writings of institute students in English and other vernacular languages will be released soon, probably by the end of March, says Supreet.



1.    A Club Constitution to concretely define each club’s vision and mission.

The club constitution which will concretely define what each club aims at, will be released by the end of this month.

2.    Integration of cultural activities via the Lit-Soc Web Portal, a professional interface including a rating system, user-friendly forums and a dedicated SMS server.

The Lit-Soc web portal with forums and rating system will be put up by the end of March.  The dedicated SMS server is slightly too expensive to realize and was only used once to send out messages regarding fresher orientation.

3.    Dedicated teams for Sponsorship and Publicity to enable self-sufficiency of clubs.

According to Supreet, the clubs did not require a specific sponsorship team as the budget provided was more than necessary. A sponsorship team was allotted for the quiz club as they had prize money for the events they organized.

4.    Assigning Hostel Club Captains

This falls under the purview of the lit-secs and soc-secs of the respective hostels, so it shouldn’t have been a manifesto point.  Though this could not be realized officially, there existed such systems in some hostels.

Cul Secs
Cul Secs 14-15


1.    Transparency – Establishment of a strong link between the organizing team and the students:

A Townhall meeting was conducted shortly after Saarang where all the grievances and issues related to Saarang were discussed. Not many people turned up for the meeting though. Cash flow statements were released every month.

2.     New initiatives:

The adventure zone this year did feature water zorbing (as opposed to dry zorbing from the year before), but this was neither a success nor a novelty precisely.

3.     Professional Shows:

Stand-up comedy by the Pundits was the sole new professional show during Saarang. Theatre performances could not be scheduled due to slot clashes while opera was hard to realize. The idea of including Western Classical Music was scrapped because the core team was not totally supportive of the idea , says Supreet.

4.    Informals & Adventure Zone:

Nothing new happened in the informals & adventure zone apart from water-zorbing or riflery.

5.    Saarang Late Nights:

According to Supreet, this required a team of dedicated coordinators, the likes of which weren’t available this year. Fortunately, it is not an impossible event in the years to come.

6.    Saarang ThinkFest:

The idea was to have a panel discussion by eminent personalities in the field of Literature and Arts. The issues faced were budget constraints (this was not part of the initial budget prepared) and the ‘crowd factor’.

7.    Organizational Restructure:

The idea was soon found to be quite infeasible.

8.      Saarang Outreach:

The Saarang Half-Ticket was introduced but could not be realized to its full potential as it was conducted during December when the schools had the winter holidays. The talent hunt can be conducted much earlier. The same was the case with Saarang Beacon, which was conducted in association with Radio-Mirchi during December. They were aimed at the college students but had to refocus their attention to malls as the colleges too had vacations during December.



1.    Reaching out to alumni with the help of the IAR Office:

Mardi Gras was conducted as an attempt to reach out to the alumni. The show though was not much of a success because it was not free even for the institute students. The alumni funding received this year was not much though this can be also attributed to the increase in sponsorship received and hence the lesser need for alumni funds. The database compilation is on-going and is being done by the IAR team.

2.    Providing a platform for institute level celebrations with the Hostel Affairs Secretary such as Food festival featuring several exotic ethnic cuisines.

The idea was conveyed to the admin. The cooking club was started to the same effect. The institute wants at least half of the food stalls being put up for the festival to be by the students. So the organization of the festival mainly depends on the interest shown by the students.

3.    Remodeling of Saarang Eunoia as an NSS project with a more structured workforce.

The idea had many issues attached, particularly the fact that NSS and Saarang were two separate entities having two different ideals.







Partially Completed



Not completed



Note: The percentage completion rate is only one of the indicators towards a secretary’s effectiveness. Thus, readers are requested to go through the entire review to understand his tenure better. Also, please keep in mind that the achievements mentioned are those of the Cul Secs, the Saarang team and Sangam together.


Additional achievements:

Cultural Clubs in IITM

1. Budgets allocated for the clubs was increased to 14 lakhs from 5 lakhs. Out of this around 9-10 lakhs will be utilised by the clubs. Most of the events happened on time and postponement if any was only due to pressure from lit-soc council. The schedule was prepared avoiding long weekends and clash of events between clubs with the help of ERP.

2. Sangam, the cultural club committee was formed. The clubs felt important and at par with Saarang. The committee was quite active and had 7 meetings in total. It helped increase interactions between club conveners and plan out collaborative events.



1. This year there was not a single case of deer death due to the parking ban imposed during Saarang. Prakriti too applauded this effort from Saarang’s part.

2. Institute students opinion was taken into account to select the artist for popular night.

3. The rock show reaped a profit for the first time because a band already playing in another part of India was selected. A well-known band with a large fan base in India was chosen rather than going for the usual ‘first time in India’. Ticket sales saw a new high with insti ticket sales itself upping by 50% mainly because of the introduction of the ikollege portal. All the professional shows got sold out. Classical night too saw a full OAT for the first time.

4. Saarang was formalized this year and each and every MoU including FR was signed. Saarang also made a huge profit this year and had an increase in brand value as well.

The club conveners seemed pleased with both the cultural secretaries. The Fine Arts club was more than happy as they went to great lengths to get their ideas (like dust-bin painting) approved by the required authorities. Most of the club events saw either one of the secretaries taking part. This helped increase the enthusiasm in the club conveners as well. The Saarang core team too had the same to say about the cultural secretaries.

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