It was the year 1994. By divine providence, a bunch of us from all over India made our way to Karunya Institute of Technology. On that day, we were warmly greeted by the grandeur of the Siruvani mountain ranges and its many waterfalls. Nestled at the foothills was our Alma mater, which we fondly call our ‘home away from home.’

I vividly remember the first meet-and-greet with our professors and college authorities. The love and affection shared was very reassuring. Slowly, our fears and apprehensions gave way to joy and hope. We started enjoying our classes as eminent professors delivered lectures. Having come from a Tamil-medium background, the support I received was phenomenal. This support was extended to our study hours with the SRA’s overseeing our progress.

Hostel life was super fun. All of us classmates, seniors, juniors, and resident staff members formed one big family. Learning each other’s mother tongue and culture gave us a very rich experience. As I hail from the border district of Kanyakumari, I could also converse fluently in Malayalam, and my circle of friends grew quickly. The extracurricular activities gave us ample opportunities to excel in sports and arts. It was a proud moment for our batch to represent the college in intercollegiate sports and cultural competitions and win many laurels. We entered the campus as minions, but at the end of four years, we graduated as mighty Spartans.

Twenty-five years have passed since we graduated!! God’s divine plan has taken us all across the world. All of us are well placed in life and are contributing effectively in our professional roles. When the thought of the silver jubilee reunion started to float around, great joy and excitement flooded our hearts. Memories from our ‘coming-of-age’ years were sweet to reminisce. Whispers in our batch’s WhatsApp group slowly became a strong voice. It was time for the Spartans of the batch of ’98 to visit our beloved college, KIT. A quick consensus on the day of the visit was reached, and travel and stay plans were charted out. To state that our batch has some of the best organizing brains is an understatement. Committees were formed to oversee various aspects of the reunion. In the end, I would say that it was brilliantly executed to perfection.

On the 8th of July 2023, it was D-day. One hundred and twenty of us congregated at Challenger Residency, Coimbatore, from all over the world. I can proudly say that out of them, many were NRI’s who had specifically flown in to attend the reunion. Three busloads full of us Spartans started our journey to our beloved college, Karunya. For most of my batch mates, this was their first-ever visit since graduating in 1998. The journey through the winding roads to Karunya Nagar filled us with nostalgic moments. We let out a shout of joy as we crossed familiar hangout places like Alandurai and Iruttupallam. The Karunya we graduated from was an engineering college. Now it has grown to become a NAAC A++ accredited Deemed to be University with a student strength of over ten thousand.

It is said that everything grows old, but the child in us stays young. We alighted from our buses to breathe the very air we had inhaled for four years. The ‘Kalyana band’ members were ready to play their tunes. With singing and dancing, we, the mighty Spartans of ’98, started to march towards Karunya from the Evangeline Matriculation School. We were warmly welcomed by the university management as we made our way to the meeting venue. Prof. Dr. Daphy Inbaseker, Sr. Professor of Mathematics, who is also the head of Alumni Affairs, had made spectacular arrangements for the meetup.

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98 reunion 3
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98 reunion 6

We are ever so grateful to our beloved Chancellor Dr. Paul Dhinakaran for gracing the occasion despite his busy schedule. We are also grateful to Prof. Dr. Prince Arulraj, Vice-Chancellor, and Prof. Dr. Elijah Blessing, Registrar of the university for gracing the occasion and making it a memorable one. We had the privilege of hosting some of the retired teachers who had tutored us. We are very thankful that Prof. Dr. John Kennedy, Dr. T V Christy, Prof. Joslin Vijaya, Prof. Dr. Michel N Kumar, Prof. Dr. Jacqueline Moni, and Prof. Dr. Mercy Shanthi could come and be part of the celebrations.

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As our batch mate Mr. Neil Koshy welcomed the august gathering, we entered a solemn moment of thanksgiving for the four years well spent here on the campus. The days spent in the campus were well presented, and with a grateful heart, we thanked our beloved founders and teachers for shaping and making us the persons that we are today. We dearly missed our beloved uncle Dr. D. G. S. Dhinakaran.

Our beloved Annan, Chancellor Dr. Paul Dhinakaran, delivered an inspiring and encouraging message. He was so happy to meet us all. He really liked the coordinated dress code for the occasion. It was wonderful to hear our Professor of Civil Engineering, Vice-Chancellor Dr. Prince Arulraj, talk about his teaching days with us. Dr. Elijah Blessing, Registrar, spoke about the various ways in which the alumni can contribute to the student community on the campus.

It was time now to honor our beloved teachers, both retired and currently working in the University. Many of our batch mates took turns to hand over the mementos.

Meeting all of our teachers was a thrill. We are the fruit of their labor. Following this, we went on a college tour, visiting the classrooms and labs where we had spent our time learning. Our dear ‘canteen man’ Chandaran anna had opened a store exclusively for us on that day. We relished the favorite sweets and snacks of the ’90s kids, ranging from kamarakat, coco mittai, Chandran’s famous tea cake, murukku, bajji, bonda, etc. Seeing the ‘saadivayal bus’ again brought tears to our eyes. We were back in college!!!

We are grateful to the college management and the Department of Alumni Affairs for hosting us a grand lunch. Guys, it was the famous Karunya mess biriyani and mutton gravy. That, my friends, completed the Karunya experience.

We, as a batch, are thrilled to see our beloved college grow leaps and bounds. Today, so many students are getting world-class education and are blessed. With all our hearts, we say, ‘Long live our Alma Mater. May you increase more and more!!'”

written by
Prof. Dr. Jasmin, batch of ‘98  & Sam Lishi, team – TML.


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