The Earth Movers
The Government deputed Prof. M. Muthukrishnudu from Government Engineering College, Kakinada as the Special Officer to set the college up. Shree.K.V.N.Appa Rao (Mathematics Lecturer) and Shree. Venkatanarasaiah (Physics Lecturer), also from Kakinada Engineering College were deputed to assist him. The College office was set up in a single room in the Subedari premises. Shree. C. Ramakrisnaiah, Lecturer in English was the first staff member from outside the core 3-man group, deputed from the Arts College in Cudappah. He arrived in Warangal by train in the evening.
Warangal did not have any lodging facilities worth the name. A Good Samaritan fixed him up in a room as a paying guest for the night. His ride in a cycle rickshaw, the next day took him to the wilderness between the Government Arts College and Kazipet. A stranger travelling in the opposite direction suggested that he seek guidance from the Subedari. He found the other three members of the founding group in a single room in the Subedari. Staff was deputed from the other colleges in Andhra Pradesh. The first RECW was thus established in the academic year 1959/60. A truck and a ‘Willys’ Jeep Station Wagon were the first vehicles to be bought for the college. Apparently, the Willys vehicle was purchased from the allocation for the library (regularised later by the Board of Governors).
Pandu, the cleaner on the truck was a friendly young lad from a village nearby. Whenever, he spotted us walking, he would hail the truck to a stop. He did ask for his pound of flesh at times. He would borrow the bicycle for a late night show. In the bargain, he would clean the bicycle and oil it too. He was a smart cookie. Next time round, we could hardly refuse to lend him the bicycle!
Nostalgia – The First Expedition – Dreams Provide A Glow In Our Eyes
A youngster in his late teens got off the train at Kazipet Railway Station, in the middle of the night, in September 1959. He was covered with steam locomotive-generated soot from head to toe. He was tired after a long journey in ‘ an unreserved compartment and hungry after the paltry, unappetizing meals served at wayside stations, enroute. He stepped out into unfamiliar territory. His luggage comprised a trunk with his belongings, a bedroll, a mosquito net, a bucket, a mug, a foldable cot (‘camp cot’ as it was known those days) and a bicycle.
Outside, in the dimly lit street, he negotiated a ride to the Regional Engineering College (RECW) hostel, in a cycle rickshaw after strapping his luggage on to it. Neither he nor the rickshaw driver was sure of the exact location. The Nakkalagutta Water Tank was the landmark that they headed to. After some searching in the darkness and after a bumpy mud-road ride, he reached the open window in a small tenement in the LIGH colony in Nakkalagutta, with an ‘Office’ board hanging out of it. The deep, full throated, reassuring voice of Shree. K. V. N. Appa Rao greeted him, much to his great relief. 250 students found their way to Regional Engineering College, Warangal, in much a similar fashion, in September 1959.
The first REC had become a reality.
To be continued…
This article is the second in a series of many, compiled by RECW’s 1964 batch for the Coffee Table Book, published in 2014. We thank Mr. S. Sampath Iyengar and his team (Batch of 1964) for giving us permission to share this with the NITW community. We also thank Professor CSRK Prasad for helping us make this happen.