2, 2006, 7:30 PM, Kharagpur, India:
It was a scene that was never experienced in any of the previous
annual events of Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur.
As the countdown came to this day, by early evening, a long
queue of thousands of students of IIT joined by many from other
institutes from across the country awaited the stadium doors to
open. Soon the Tagore Open Air Theater, popularly known as the
TOAT was filled with over six thousand people - all awaiting the
laser magic of Manick Sorcar, first time ever to be experienced
in Kshitij, the annual mega-event of IIT, Kharagpur.
Kshitij 2006, as they called this year's event, was the largest
and it was a joint effort by the students and faculty members
of all technical departments, hosting a galaxy of events aimed
at boosting the technological and managerial skills inherent in
today's youth. It provided a chance for the students to meet and
think over what new can be pursued in the field of technology
Sorcar's laser show was scheduled to start at 7:30 PM. But due
to slight delay in the arrival of a few key guests, and in controlling
the long queue of people entering the stadium, the show was started
at 7:45 PM. A thundering applause and roaring cheers from the
audience welcomed Manick Sorcar as he was introduced by Sanchayan
Chakraborty, the General Secretary of Kshitij 2006. After
a short introductory speech Sorcar started his show "Horizon
"Horizon and Beyond" was an extravaganza of
laser graphics, overhead laser spectacles, which ran for 22 minutes
simultaneously with intelligent lighting coordinated with its
story and background music. It was a techno-flavored history of
India which started from 2500 BC and took the audience to 2006
and beyond. As a part of the history the audience also saw how
IIT, Kharagpur, the first Indian Institute of Technology had its
humble commence over fifty years ago and flourished over the years
to be acclaimed as one of the greatest in the world today. Each
of the milestones, flagged with three-dimensional overhead laser
spectacles and on-screen graphics was warmly cheered by the packed
stadium. The audience enjoyed every scene "as a thrill
of my life", as expressed by one of the spectators later,
"this was an unforgettable experience". After
the show, Manick Sorcar was congratulated on stage and honored
with a plaque on behalf of the students and the faculty, by Professor
Sunando Das Gupta, Co-chairman of Kshitij 2006.
At the guest-dinner following the show, Manick Sorcar was warmly
congratulated by the Guest of Honor 'Padma Vibhushan' Dr.
R. Chidambaram, Principal Scientific Adviser to the Govt. of India
and DAE - Homi Bhabha Professor, "I have seen your father's
magic show many years ago. Now I saw your magic presented through
laser technology - it was simply spectacular", he said.
Professor B. K. Mathur, Head of the Department of Physics &
Meteorology of the I.I.T. greeted Sorcar, "Absolutely
impressive! I am still wondering how you managed the
laser to do those fascinating waves overhead!"; he warmly
invited Manick to visit his laser laboratory. Sorcar was also
congratulated by Professor Jacky Baltes from the University of
Manitoba, Canada, Dr. Farrokh Mistree, professor in Woodruff School
of Mechanical Engineering in Georgia Institute of Technology,
I.I.T. Prof. M. Chakraborty, Dean of Alumni Affairs and the others.
"This was exactly what we were expecting to happen",
said a jubilant Debjit Mandal, one of the Heads of the Core Team,
Kshitij 2006, "this year's festival is the largest. We
wanted the mega-event to start with a mega-show and a mega-response
- and that's exactly what we got. We thank you Mr. Sorcar".
(left) Manick Sorcar receiving honorary plaque
from Prof. Sunando Das Gupta, IIT, Kharagpur. (Right) At the guest
dinner after the show Manick Sorcar with wife Shikha, Dr. R. Chidambaram,
Prof. M. Chakraborty,
and Prof. Jacky Baltes.
More about the event...
Manick Sorcar expresses his gratitude to Dr. R.
Chidambaram, Principal Scientific Adviser to the Govt. of India
and DAE - Homi Bhabha Professor, for the kind letter he wrote
to Sorcar after Kshitij 2006 Techno-Management Festival was over.
Excerpts from that letter:
"... It was a great pleasure to meet you,
partly because you are your father's son and more because you
are you .. to see your patriotic laser animation show and to hear
about your work. You have successfully brought together art and
science in a very original way. I wish you success in your further
endeavours and hope to meet you and see your show again in the