Sunday, 30 June 2013

Revisiting C.I.E. after Nineteen Years

The Main entrance to the main building  has remained the same
Yesterday while I was passing Morris Nagar close to the Delhi University, it was on an impulse that I decided to visit The Central Institute of Education after what could be a gap of more than nineteen years! C.I.E. had been my Alma Mater for two years from nineteen ninety -two till nineteen ninety- four; years when I did my Bachelor or Education followed by my Masters in Education. Those were fantastic years which passed away with a fairy-tale like sense of reality. There were days when we had cultural programs days when we had lecture, and then during B.Ed. we had practice teaching. An important part of the B.Ed. program was the training that we took up as  the SUPW component. I took up wood-work! While doing M.Ed. however we didn’t have practice teaching because one of the focuses in M.Ed. was the research paper which took all our efforts, poring through the books for sources and interesting topics, and pursuing our research guides for valuable insight! The canteen was a spot on the campus where we could sit together, juniors, seniors, research scholars and all! The names of some of my teachers that comes to mind are: Madam Bharti Baveja, Jaimini Ma’am, Saluja Sir, R.P. Sharma Sir, Janardhan Prasad Sir, and so on!
The wing housing the library
When I crossed through the main gate, I noticed the same old sign titled C.I. E. with the legend- Department of Education, Delhi University. Knowing that it was a Saturday and the vacations were still on, I didn’t expect to see any of my teachers! I parked at the exact spot where I used to park all those years ago, below Bawa Sir’s room and glanced up towards the end of the corridor which once housed MACESE where Deepi and Rawat used to work, and I wondered whether they still did. The same old palm trees swayed in the wind only a little taller than they had been all those years ago! When I entered into the lobby, everything appeared to be as it had been all those years ago. It seemed as if time had stopped still for all those years, and I travelled back in time, the same notice boards, the same auditorium, albeit with the logo of the two oil-lamps missing!
The Corridor leading to the library-you can see the newspaper stands!
My B.Ed. classes used to take place in the conference hall in the right hand corner!
Taking a deep breath, I decided to proceed further. I stepped onto the corridor and was assaulted by that all pervasive smell from the toilets! It seemed as if they had not got over this problem. On the left I saw the Library where my research paper on System’s  Analysis might still exist. There was some noise coming from the library, the floor was being ground. And then I moved on exploring the other wings on the ground floor. Everything was the same! Even the newspaper stands seemed not to have aged a bit! I went to the block where I attended classes as a B.Ed. student. I stood outside the conference hall, door locked, and imagined the voices of excited students discussing Pedagogy or Philosophy with R.P.Sharma Sir, and wondered at that moment where all the others were and what they were doing! After having paused for a few moments before this conference hall which had been my class room for a good one year, I proceeded towards the canteen. Every door was locked. On the way I passed the Chemistry Lab where Jaimini Ma’am use to sit. It was locked! And then I moved on to the field where we used to play Paddle Tennis, and looked at the concrete benches where we used to enjoy a good moment in the winter sun munching on those Pakodas and Yadram’s pile of chapattis. The whole area was deserted since it was the day off, but then it was much better that way since there was no one to disturb my thoughts! When I returned to my home in Gurgaon and everyone asked me why it had taken me so long I told them that I had been to C.I.E. and they were all happy for me!
An attempt to decorate the screen with a mural! This was something new!
The seat of all discourses! This is where we munched on snacks and discussed Pedagogy!
The Paddle-tennis court was just in front of the boys’ common room.

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