The money and the mar­ket­ing

Ma­jor Di­wali bashes are tick­eted, but ‘just to break even’ with the costs in­volved in or­gan­is­ing the event

Hindustan Times (Delhi) - HT Education - - Front Page - Ra­hat Bano

Di­wali bashes are ma­jor events on the cul­tural cal­en­dars of a num­ber of prom­i­nent uni­ver­si­ties in the US and UK. Some are tick­eted, oth­ers are not.

At Cam­bridge, ticket prices are £9 for its Hindu Cul­tural So­ci­ety mem­bers and £12 for non-mem­bers. “We do charge a ticket price, but it is only to cover the cost of the din­ner, hall hire and other over­heads. Our so­ci­ety doesn’t aim to make a profit and the money from the tick­ets goes to cover puja costs,” says Nikhila Ravi, pres­i­dent, Cam­bridge Hindu Cul­tural So­ci­ety.

Mem­bers paid £6 and non- mem­bers £8 to at­tend Di­wali in the Quad 2011, or­gan­ised by LSES So­ci­ety for the Pro­mo­tion of In­dian Cul­ture and Ethos and King’s In­dia So­ci­ety, on Oc­to­ber 25.

Though Univer­sity of Penn­syl­va­nia’s In­dian As­so­ci­a­tion, Ran­goli, had been charg­ing a min­i­mal fee “just to break even with the costs in­volved in or­gan­is­ing the event, this year it’s be­ing waived,” says its pres­i­dent Rishabh Ra­jiv.

The Univer­sity of Wis­con­sin-madi­son’s show gets fi­nan­cial sup­port from var­i­ous or­gan­i­sa­tions on cam­pus. Fund­ing for this year’s event came from the As­so­ci­ated Stu­dents of Madi­son, the Mul­ti­cul­tural Coun­cil (MCC) and the Wis­con­sin Ex­pe­ri­ence Grant and co-spon­sor­ship from the Depart­ment of Eco­nomics plus sup­port from com­mu­nity donors. “The show and fire­works are free ev­ery year. This time, the food is free but lim­ited to 350 Uw-madi­son stu­dents, staff and fac­ulty,” says Mu­fad­dal S Soni, pres­i­dent, IGSA, Uw-madi­son.

Stu­dents put out fly­ers and cre­ate Face­book pages to pub­li­cise the pro­gramme. The FB post on LSE SPICE’S and King’s Di­wali in the Quad 2011 en­ticed peo­ple with a fash­ion show in as­so­ci­a­tion with an In­dian con­tem­po­rary de­signer wear re­tailer, In­dian food, cour­tesy Moo­lis and Raja’s Ban­quet­ing, and pro­fes­sional photography on site.

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