Orientation Program

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Orientation Program (or OP) is a process in IIT Kharagpur through which sophomore students of IIT Kharagpur are inducted into senior halls (Azad, LLR, MS, Nehru, Patel, RK, RP) and introduced to the culture of KGP. It can be compared to the practice of Ragging at other Indian colleges. Although the activities performed by third year students on second year students are mellowed down versions of the prevailing practices in other local Indian colleges, they are still considered humiliating, and come under the definition of ragging, as defined by the Government of India:[1]

History[edit]

OP is known to be a practice that has been around since the 80s. It is often fondly recounted by several alumni on their trips back to IIT Kharagpur. It is commonly acknowledged that over the years, the activities that have been a part of OP have been either watered down to less humiliating tasks.

In January 2017, Sundar Pichai, then-CEO of Google, Inc referred to a vague prank that was performed on him by his friends:[2]

He was ragged and was even hit by “CG Change,” where his room was turned upside down despite being locked from outside. CG stands for centre of gravity.

This was widely viewed as a hugely understated account of what actually happened, to keep it politically correct, fun and yet be truthful about his experiences in college.

Logistics[edit]

  • OP happens in the starting months of the Fall semester, generally carries on till October
  • OP happens in the common rooms of the halls
  • The main affected set of people are the second year students who have just entered the senior hall (or have stayed a dormant one year there already, in some cases)
  • The main set of people who are conducting this are 3rd year students, and they are led by the General Secretaries. There are 4 G.Secs: Social and Cultural, Sports and Games, Technology, and Maintenance.
  • There are three different places where the OP might happen: (a) Common Room (b) Dining Mess (c) Wing
  • Wing OP is considered to be the scariest, and is generally the venue for the creepiest and most humiliating of activities.
  • Common Room OP is about instilling respect in all the second year students for their seniors in the hall
  • Mess OP is about humiliating students in front of their other batch mates, and hence fostering a false sense of comradery among them. (See Institutionalized Oppression and Internalized Oppression)

References[edit]