Dhol Baje: Manipal’s Take on Thanksgiving

Does the phrase “Dhol Baje” ring any bells? Do you visualise the grandeur and mirth of Navratri celebrations? But for the students of Manipal and the localities here, it is that and more. After a long hiatus of 3 years, the gala event of Rotaract Club of MAHE, Dhol Baje, was conducted on the evening of the 22nd of November.

It was an evening rife with festive vibes of friends and classmates, uniting for a get-together, breaking a leg to popular Bollywood numbers like “Kabira” and “Mast Magan.” The event commenced by offering prayers to Goddess Durga to banish the darkness lurking in our lives to find prosperity. The event was graced with dignitaries Dr Geetha Maiya, Mr Jay Vittal, and Ms Mahalasa Kini, among many others. The event kicked off by honouring the students of ASARE, a home for children with special needs.

This flagship event of Rotaract MAHE, however, was more than just a fest. The funds collected from the ticket sales shall be donated towards charity, with MAHE donating an amount matching that of the ticket sales. This sum of money is then donated to the service of the underprivileged.

It was a night to remember though, as the crowd let the atmosphere soak in, be it the surreal performances by Chords and Co, Manipal’s largest musical committee with its soulful performances, or the zest and tang of graceful yet frenzied dance by Mafia and Halcyon, the two most prominent dance clubs of Manipal – the event lived up to its hype as the students of Manipal enjoyed themselves to the core. The witty jokes cracked by Shruthi and Shrey of Comedy Club Manipal added some much-needed mirth before DJ Arvind made us move with the beats of popular Bollywood tracks. The final evening event was by Glam and Glitz, with a mesmerising ramp walk. Their theme for the event was colours of the globe, which resonated well with the event as all the students were bedecked in vibrant traditional attire.

What stood out the most in this event was that this was a sign towards a return to almost complete normalcy post-covid. The students of the batches post-covid often wonder if the batches before the pandemic had a great time here. Well, now they get to experience Manipal fully, celebrating their presence in this university they call home. Not only that, the students of Manipal, irrespective of their courses and seniority, made the most of the night in unison it was a phenomenon to behold indeed.

To conclude, Dhol Baje is an event like no other in Manipal, a thanksgiving event of sorts, where students have the time of their lives celebrating the diverse cultures they belong to while catering to the service of the greater good. Indeed, Dhol Baje, 2022 was an event to remember for its uniquity. If you have missed this event, make sure you don’t miss the next edition of Dhol Baje next year!

Written by: Saurav Das for MTTN 

Edited by: Ishita Sharma for MTTN 

Images by: Ria Gulati and Sushant Pulli for MTTN 

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