With the long-awaited return to AIL, the Bluepencil team wants to try and give a little bit of a reminder of what we’re going back to. Here’s your go-to guide for some of the main Addas of AIL.
As soon as you happen to enter through the gates of our college, you will glance upon an orderly shaped bush; carved in grass with the letters “AIL”. This is a standing symbol of our institute’s identity and is special in its own minuscule yet utterly significant ways. It is one of the very first places where new students arriving in college gloriously stand in front of “AIL ki jhaad” – which it is famously titled as, and get themselves clicked. These pictures and this tradition, in particular, hold a lot of sweet significance – it is a standing reminder to the testament of the college and its students and a piece of beautiful nostalgia that you can always reflect back to in the coming years.
Picture this; you’re downright tired after an exhaustive day and simply wish to unwind. AIL’s cafe should definitely be your go-to diversion. Situated on the same floor as the Research Cell and besides the gym; it is graced by the presence of our beloved Dada who is there to provide you a wide variety of food and a warm ambiance that allows you to sit down, socialize and acclimatize to how a usual day looks like at our college. Batches of students can attest to the fact that the cafe is always a welcomed escapade, especially during exhilarating days or even during exam season. Especially if you’re new to the college; this can be your frequent spot to connect and socialize with tons of people or even your personal tranquil space to come up and read a book or tune in to music while enjoying a delicious munch alongside. The cafe is also a frequent spot of hubs of students streaming sports matches and having a gala time.
Picturesque spots in and around AIL
With Chandigarh skies being as beautiful as they are, you don’t really need to search far and wide to find the prettiest backdrops for taking aesthetic pictures. However, do not miss out on the chance to get really cute pictures in the tiny TOI gazebos or near the AIL bush. The atmosphere in AIL during spring is something else entirely, the pretty flowers and the prettier clouds are camera-ready always be it under the Girls Hostel gate or the back wall near the Basket Ball Court. Be sure to keep an unhealthy amount of random pictures of the college in your galleries for future nostalgia purposes.
Welcome to AIL hostel Mess, where you have food 4 times a day. An unspoken rule about the mess timings at AIL was the division of time between the senior and junior batches to avoid (stampede and looong lines). There are some basic ground rules that all of us are required to follow while going to the mess like ‘decent’ attire, standing in line, letting the seniors go first, and of course, PLEASE TIE YOUR HAIR UP!
To make up for all the trials and tribulations we suffer throughout the week, our cute and kind mess offers us Chole Bhature on Sunday afternoons paired with their version of fruit custard, and let me tell you how much we love lunch on those days. For some of us, that alone is the motivation to wake up early enough if at all. And of course, when we see Vada pao or Samosa on the snack menu, college becomes a little more tolerable and a little more like home.
As you enter the Acad block and walk through the glass door, you will find a lift (walk past that, It’s under maintenance all year round). Behind the lift is this minuscule atrium straight out of ancient Roman setting. The purpose of this striking architecture is no less important. Though used sparingly we were introduced to the same at the time of novices when all the first years were asked to gather there while our moot results were announced by MCS and obviously Dr. Bajirao standing in the ‘middle’ in all his glory like Zelus. The atrium is also used by the 5th years for their last escorts party (and that kids is the circle of life).
Another peculiar and hopefully once in a lifetime use of the atrium was made when the Chairman (you heard it right) had finally come to listen to the demands and complaints of yours truly. The sight from that day is unforgettable, 400 agitated students all in one place when the authorities finally heard us after uncountable days of sitting in the scorching heat and sleeping on mattresses under the limitless sky. That day the chairman took the noble initiative of asking all the students (individually) about their concerns. It took use more than 3 hours to convey our point but that’s what has made the atrium such a special place.
The parking lot is one of the most versatile places in the college. Apart from spacing not more than 4 cars (and the iconic auto) it serves as a fantastic hangout space post dinner. While you can see some people trying to measure the area in terms of steps, others are generally enjoying gossip sessions. Another purposeful use is to get food and other stuff through the gate walls. One could even sit there and just observe people running in chappals with wallets and phones in their hands while a line of delivery guys waited for them at the main gate (oh the stress is real).
The parking lot also played its fair share during the renowned AIL protest. The area had overnight turned into a sea of mattresses with heads to count as far as the sight went. From playing ‘Apna Time Ayega’ on full volume and crying ‘Bahar Aao Baat Karo’ during the day to having free ‘Chai’ and other goodies being sent by the supper supportive alumni at night, those 10 days were some of the toughest for the students as well as the parking lot. In the end, I guess both fared well.
MPH – Thursday activities and brainstorming sessions
These are examples of how AIL takes initiatives (which is cute) but also holds the power to cancel your Afternoon nap on a Thursday by just sending one notice on the batch group. Seasoned experts from different fields are called to be guest speakers with the aim of providing a forum to develop interests in the varied areas of law. Lectures on topics like road safety, IBC, law pertaining to narcotics, right to privacy have been conducted. So, while attending Thursday lectures carry inconspicuous dark-coloured earphones (if you had a long night), a water bottle, and remember that 1st-year students are supposed to be seated in the front rows and 5th years (who are exempted from compulsory attendance) take up the last few rows.
Another facet of keeping up with AIL traditions is the brain storming session. It is nothing like the name suggests. We feel this segment works like a self-care regime, although made to storm your mind to work around and discuss on a prevalent issue(read-boring), it usually serves as an organised conducive nap, and who doesn’t love one? So, on some stagnant afternoons, with some irrelevant lecture in the background, swift Chinese whispers looming in the air, you would find AILIENS basking in the glory of boredom, resting their bodies and mind, living up to the traditions of taking a group power nap.
The basketball court or fondly BBC is one of the nicest places to unwind in the college. Whether you’re a part of the team or not, the BBC accepts and welcomes all. Usually found here are people who are either panting from doing german drills and suicides (the running thing) or chilling on the benches on lazy Sunday afternoons (basically any time of day). We hope you all make fond memories of sitting here till 11 pm and taking in the fresh air between grueling study sessions.
PS: Don’t walk on the court wearing informal footwear as a courtesy towards the team.
Located to the right of the Academic block is this beautiful garden filled with flowers where people stroll or sunbathe on sunny winter mornings. With only two benches around the park, there’s always a silent race during the 15 minutes afternoon break or Sunday mornings to get to the benches first. With pretty shrubs and flowers bordering the garden, you would almost always spot a couple or two around the area. While nobody seems to know for certain why the Mughal gardens are named so, we’re guessing it’s the beauty and romance of the place.
It would be remiss of me to not mention that the Mughal gardens are fittingly the designated place for the hoisting of the flag on Independence Day and unfurling on Republic Day.
Cold fusion to most of us is an emotion, actually multiple emotions. Sunny day? Grab a cold coffee; Feel like snacking? Get some chicken strips; A date to impress? Don’t worry, they’ll at least try to set up a fine dining experience with the crispiest Chicken Seekh Kebab Thick Wrap or a Paneer Crunchy Thick Wrap with Peri Peri Fries that won’t ever disappoint you. Eating alone? Inderjeet bhaiya, although mostly remains quiet but if you annoy him enough, he will try making conversation with you about the inflation in vegetable oil prices. Telling you with experience, there will be days when microwaved Maggi will start to make you feel sick, Cold fusion’s Classic Maggi will always come to your rescue. With all the love that our college students poured out to this fine establishment, they’ve branched out and have inaugurated an Amritsari Kulcha House right next door, which I, being an Ambarsariya, have been spending most of my afternoons in Mohali. A major perk is the 10% discount for AIL students which I hope we all get to avail of soon.
We hope that this trip down memory lane (pleasant or otherwise) makes you all even more excited to finally be back in college. Stay tuned for more on AIL and its quirks.