Walking Back in Time: B.S. Abdur Rahman University, Chennai

This institution is where Masood was trained to become the brilliant engineer that he is today.  He doesn’t tell everyone, but I’m proud of him so I am going to talk about his past.  Masood’s father passed away when he was a senior in high school, and given the financial constraints at that time, it seemed impossible for him to pursue his dream of becoming an engineer.

When he queued up outside the dean’s office to get admission that day, he learned that several students paid enormous amount of donations to get into the engineering program.  He felt disheartened for he was seeking enrollment based solely on merits.  But he still walked into the room, which was full of senior faculty members and officials who were interviewing students, and did his best in answering their questions.  And by the grace of Allah, he got accepted!  Not only that, he completed his engineering degree on scholarship.

B.S. Abdur Rahman University was then known as the B.S. Abdur Rahman Crescent Engineering College.  It is located in the outskirts of Chennai city, so far it seemed to me that I thought we were riding on forever to get there!  But once we finally arrived, I felt a wave of relief from the terribly hot and crowded city of Chennai. This university contains lush green trees and I felt like walking in a garden.

Once we entered the building and walked along the hallways that Masood had spent three years in, I noticed that he drifted away from me.  My husband – at that very moment – was years away, back to the time when he was single, skinny and was dreaming of becoming a successful engineer.  I stood back and watched him recall his years as a student.  I loved watching him.  When he did return from his past, he held my hand and smiled, “I can’t believe I’m back here.  With my wife.”

It was a Sunday so there weren’t many people around.  We walked around a bit, with Masood telling me stories about his friends and professors.  We spent some time under the huge tree where he and his friends once spent most of their afternoons.  Finally he took me to the canteen, where he had eaten a thousand meals before, and had mango juice.

It was the perfect afternoon for me.  Alhumdulillah.

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25 Responses to Walking Back in Time: B.S. Abdur Rahman University, Chennai

  1. 'liya says:

    “I loved watching him. When he did return from his past, he held my hand and smiled, “I can’t believe I’m back here. With my wife.”” This part sent tingles down my spine – how sweet, what a sweet post! You guys are a very sweet couple 😀

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  3. Nisa AK says:

    That must have been very nostalgic for your husband! i can totally understand how he must have felt going back there and that too with u by his side! priceless moment for u guys! mashaAllah

  4. Mezba says:

    Lovely pictures, and post… as usual!

    • nadia says:

      Thank you, Mezba. It wasn’t easy taking these pictures because it was noon and the sun was too bright. I had trouble setting the camera’s exposure, so the pictures looked washed out.

  5. Aww…that’s sweet. It’s always makes my day to read something sweet like that!

  6. Lance says:

    Extremely well written piece. I loved it.
    I am an engineering student myself here in India and i am glad that Masood bhai is a very successfull engineer.

    I hope this blog post somewhat breaks the MYTH that Muslims have no opportunities in India. Masood bhai did NOT pay any bribe and also got SCHOLARSHIP!!!
    That proves it.

  7. Sumera says:

    Its always lovely seeing and visiting places which your spouse spent their time as a youth in – you feel loved when they share it with you lol

    • nadia says:

      It is, Sumera! I’ve heard funny stories about Masood’s engineering days, and I was so excited to visit the place where it all happened 🙂

  8. adeelkunwar says:

    very nice post!
    it has taken me to my college canteen for a while 🙂

  9. Hajar Alwi says:

    Aww~ this is so sweet of you to write such a touching post on your husband. I love how you’re able to walk down the memory lane with him. As if you have known him all his lifetime. 🙂

    • nadia says:

      Hajar, I’ve been hearing a lot of funny stories from Masood since we got married, and most of them revolved around the time when he was in this university. I actually insisted that we visit this place during our summer break in India. It was definitely fun walking down the memory lane with him 🙂

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  11. masood says:

    I am touched again and no wonder I just came back again from those memories during reading this post. It’s all Allah’s grace and blessings which made my way easy and smooth, Alhumdulillah.

    • nadia says:

      It is Allah’s blessing indeed, for given the situation that time, Ammi tells me that she was worried you guys would not have the chance to get higher education.

  12. Well I really loved the LOVE you show here. Masood is a lucky man.God bless both of you and keep that love burning for ever.

  13. hfm says:

    This is so sweet& nostalgic, I think being sentimental about education is something we lack in the West, it’s seen more as a burden than a luxury& privilege. I feel terrible that I can’t imagine taking my spouse to my university& feeling pride, it’s great knowing that your husband does.

    • nadia says:

      That is sad, hfm. Because the time spent, friends made, hardships faced, and confidence built in the institution where we spend all those years while trying earn a degree should mean so much for every one.

  14. Sivasubramanian M says:

    Nice to read about your experience in this wonderful place. I’ve just completed my 4-year engineering course from the same place, just months have passed and I’m already missing it. And that “huge tree where he and his friends once spent most of their afternoons” which you referred to was the banyan adjacent to the canteen. And guess what, even after decades this is still the most favorite hangout spot for students every afternoon – the legacy continues. Your post would look complete with a photo of that legendary banyan, if you had shot a snap of it.

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