Monday, June 18, 2012

Survivor Roorkee: A freshman's guide to life at IIT-R

Nearly a fortnight ago, I wrote a post regarding Applied Mathematics at IIT Roorkee. The post received a fairly good response, so I decided to type in a post to help the prospective IITians at Roorkee.


Roorkee, is yet another town in Uttarakhand. But again, not many towns can boast of an IIT. In case, you mistake Uttarakhand for a perennially frozen cold province in North India, then please allow me to disillusion you. Roorkee is not hilly, it is not cold (not throughout the year). The climate here is Temperate as we call it. Very hot in the summers followed by again a very humid monsoon and extremely cold winters in January and the 1st half of February. 

Tip: No need to pack warm clothes for the Fall semester, though. Packing umbrellas and/or rain-coats would be a far better choice!

Circumscribing the IIT at Roorkee are the Civil Lines, where every possibly necessary commodity of use and more is easily available. Also, the canteen for the Rajendra Bhawan (the hostel for the freshers) supplies mattresses, buckets, mugs and hangers etc., at the beginning of a new session.

Tip: Since, everything is available in the Civil lines and at the Rajendra Bhawan, you need not travel carrying your bedding along with you!


Once you end up with the registration process at the Convocation Hall, I'll advise opening an a/c at either of the SBI or the PNB branches inside the campus, preferably SBI. It would actually be a matter of 15-20 mins, because both the banks usually setup their stalls just outside the Convocation Hall in the lawns. There is a small shop cum PCO/FAX within the Cautley Bhawan. The shop will take care of daily amenities and mobile recharges, if you are lazy enough to walk to the civil lines. 

What about bicycles? Should we buy one? I bought a bicycle back in 2010 and I prefer walking now. I would advise against buying one. Why? Do you want your bicycle turning into a public commuter? Or, do you want to bear the extra load of a batchmate? Plus, a bicycle has maintenance issues.

Still want a bicycle?

Tip: If you want to save on the bicycle costs, you can always wait for the unclaimed bicycles being sold off at the hostels. They are priced as low as Rs. 200-400 against the Rs. 3000+ bicycles outside!


The mess at Rajendra Bhawan, is a little rigid with the customs to be followed there. One has to dress up properly to be permitted inside. Where 'properly' means NO shorts/capris/3-4ths and definitely NO slippers. However, this rigidity lasts for a very short period of time, i.e., till the Council Elections. Also, during this pre-election time, restrictions are set on the entry and exit of the hostellers. Which, are dissolved once the elections are done away with. In case, you do not like the mess food, you can always order a home delivery from the Dominos outlet just outside the campus.
The telephone no. being +911332275424

Other good food outlets include Prakash, Center Point, Sagar, 36 Chowrangee Lane, Olive and TinTin.

Tip: If you want to eat food other than that from the mess, and save on it, try the Govind Bhawan or the Ravindra Bhawan canteens. Comparably good food, at reasonable rates!


NCC guarantees returns.

With, the end of the 1st week, you'd be asked to opt for either of the 3: NSO, NSS or the NCC as a proficiency. NCC is lot more physical and tiresome, the cadets are required to stay for 10-12 days camp in the winter break, but it ain't bad. If you aim at being a hotshot IAS officer, the 'B' and the 'C' certificates help a bit. Plus, if you are already an 'A' certificate holder from the school, do join NCC. With NCC as a proficiency, you are guaranteed with a good grade. NSS, is not at all generous with the grades, mind you! You will have to earn your grades, unless you have good contacts in the core team. To get into the NSO, you need to qualify at the trials. In case you are already a sportsperson, NSO would be an ideal proficiency.

Tip: In case you don't want NCC, nor the NSS and do not play any sport, simply go for the hockey trials and you'll be selected just for showing up!


Lastly, the books. There are 2-3 good book stores in the civil lines, I prefer the Indra Book Depot. They sell both second hand and new books. The newer ones at a 20-30% discount and the 2nd hand at half the rates. The shops at civil lines remain closed on Wednesdays, except for the book stores. The Mahatama Gandhi Central Library at IIT-R, is HUGE and has a good collection of books. The library also runs a TBLS, the text book loan scheme, whereby you can loan 3 text books from the library after paying Rs. 200 and issuing a TBLS card from the library.

Wishing you a good stay at IIT-R.


  1. but, u was not able to this gold only

  2. How good is the climate for people with Asthma , Sinus problems?