You’re a fresh high school graduate with aspirations and doubts about what your future holds.
You had just taken your Board exams, tons of entrances, and looked at different universities.
Maybe a Fauji uncle told you that AIL is a good option, and you hope to get through.
After you find out you got in, you get packing and say your goodbyes.
You’re finally here, but what now?
Every institution has its own traditions, and AIL is not an exception.
We’ve had our fair share of events, but it’s time we open the gates and let new people in.
It’s time you find out the real AIL, now that we’re finally heading back.
After two long years, AIL will finally (hopefully) be fully offline, much like it used to be.
And with it will come the Formal Intro, Escorts and the much-awaited Freshers. You might’ve seen pictures of these events floating around, but they’re much more than the stills left behind. Let this article be your guide to understanding the basics of some of the most vital experiences of life at AIL.
Coming to the first and foremost, the ‘Formal’ Intro, is anything but. It’s merely a sample of our college life, with all the seniors and teachers waiting for you to come forward and express yourself without any misgivings.
The only twist is that you’ll be painted in black and blue, quite literally. It is the perfect time to explore creative ways in which shoe polish, lipsticks, hair oil etc is put to use. Formal intro brings everyone’s inner MUA alive. Well this is only the beginning as later you get a once in a lifetime opportunity to go on stage and properly introduce yourself to everyone.
Yes, on stage.
We had heard about the formal intro from all our seniors, the funky dancing, the taglines, and all that jazz, just the usual college stuff but what we didn’t realise at the time was that this college was anything but normal. So, with lipstick and kajal smeared all over our faces, screaming and howling like the hooligans that we looked like, the girls of the batch of 2024 walked tall into the auditorium. It was in that moment that all our inhibitions and the fear of embarrassment had quite officially left the premises. And boy, did we dance. At one point, the cheering and the applause from the audience were so deafening that we could barely hear our thoughts. I mean, what could be worse than going on stage in front of all your professors and seniors with oil-clad hair and one leg of our pants folded up to our knees and dancing in utter disregard of who’s watching, right?
Not really, to me it felt like the first whiff of freedom, but there was also the sheer solidarity and sisterhood that we all felt in the girls’ hostel that evening. From mistaking our batchmates as seniors sometimes to yet some more tiresome dancing in the hostel quad, we felt at home. After all, it was official. We were a part of the most exclusive sorority in town
Of course, I’m not going to give away every detail at this point, but know this, by the time you get on that platform, your fears will be washed away by the excitement in the air and you will be left wishing for more. This Roadies-esque event is an essential element of being in a college where everybody knows everybody, and where nobody feels nervous to approach a senior. Be it for help, for friendship or even just to greet them.
Formal introduction is a great icebreaker; especially with seniors who go all the way to make you feel comfortable and allow you to express your interests and thoughts about the college in a thoroughly fun space! I recall one formal introduction in particular with a senior in my first year of college. They asked me about my hobbies; something pretty basic but with such sheer interest and ended on a note that if I ever require any help in the course of these five years, I shouldn’t hesitate before reaching out to them. In retrospect, that was definitely reassuring at the time and continues to be!
Which reminds me, do brush up on your Ma’ams and Sirs, because you do not want to mess up that first impression on your soon to be support systems throughout the next five years and even further.
Of course, after the thumping exhilaration of the formal introduction comes to an end, you have Escorts to look forward to. The Escorts event is partly a way to find seniors you can connect with, and partly a way for seniors to find entertaining ways to mess with you.
To follow the tradition, you are to ask a senior to be your Escort to the event. Now, it’s not as simple as that. To make sure your proposal is received well, you may be asked to preface it with something extra. Maybe a song for the special lady, or a poem for the lucky man.
And there are far too many cheesy pick-up lines to choose from.
To quote few batchmates of mine,
I’m not a photographer, but I can picture you and I together.
Flip a coin sir, it it’s heads then You’ll go with me and if it’s tails then I’m going with you.
(Very cringey but acceptable nonetheless).
Now this is all good, but if you’ve grown up watching MTV shows or Karan Johar movies, you’re at least vaguely aware of the Freshers event.
Freshers and formal intro are just another fun tradition of AIL. Unfortunately, the batch of 2025 never got a chance to attend freshers in its ‘authentic’ form. However our seniors were thoughtful enough to organise a virtual ice-breaking session for us. Which gave us a chance to interact with seniors and get to know them better. During our virtual formal introduction, I was given the character of circuit from Munna Bhai MBBS, which was pretty fun to do. I even won the best entertainer of the evening haha. But at the end of the day, it is one of the most fun memories I can recall of our first-year online law school.
This is the biggest event for all the newbies in college. Now, you may plan on dancing the night away, but there’s a tiny condition put on for all the lady freshers in attendance, showing up in sarees. It doesn’t matter if you beg, borrow or steal it, the sarees, ties and suits tradition is an important coming-of-age moment for every young adult away from home.
Having the realisation that your new roommate will have to wrap you up like a burrito from scratch, to unceremoniously scratching yourself with so-called ‘safety’ pins in places you didn’t know existed, a saree will awaken your inner Madhubala (but let me stress upon the fact that the pressure of not tripping on the steps with those flares was real).
For boys of course, this is the time they become gentlemen. Suited up from top to bottom, they also get their moment to shine as each and every boy embodies the spirit of a freshly pipped young man, ready to take on the world.
A part of the quintessential college experience entails the newly acquired notion of independence, anxiety about job prospects, a healthy amount of unhealthy competition with your peers, and a fresher’s party. All of these become magnified when you’re a student at AIL. The batch of 2024 had an unnervingly short-lived experience of the true college life and it’s safe to say that we made the most of it.
AIL has a notorious image for churning out some of the most hardworking people in the industry. The reason behind that could range from people having to work 10x harder than their peers at NLUs to the tight-knit community inside the hostel walls. Anyhow, coming back to the party of the year (!!!!!), the AIL fresher’s party is surely one to remember (or not). We all got dolled up and assembled in the MPH for an evening of fun and games and many many pictures. This was then followed by the ‘DJ Night’ in the basement for an hour or two.
Writing all this makes me nostalgic about my own experiences. Being from the last batch to have observed these traditions, I hope that as budding seniors, we are also able to give you the experience of a lifetime. These traditions gave me the boost I needed to make sure that no matter what, I always knew that I have the option of reaching out to my seniors and batch mates. We may not have thousands on campus, but we do have them in different parts of the country, and the world. Our network is extensive and the traditions are what keeps this bond alive.
Now that we’re all going back to a home away from home, I hope to create new memories with our growing family. Let’s take these traditions forward, and add some more of our own.
This post was written by Manya, IIIrd Year.