Onam, the traditional festival of Kerala is celebrated by the students before the start of Onam vacation. The traditional Pulikali, Chenda melam and various folk and modern art forms are the special features.
Onam celebrations were carried out with full festivity in the campus for two days from 27th & 28th, August.
Day one the program commenced with various outdoor games for students. Along with students faculties also participated with full energy in various games to keep the spirit of Onam alive. Evening programs began with Thiruvathirakkali in a natural environment outside the building in the ambience of oil lamps. It is a traditional form of indigenous dance of Kerala which has a lot of relevance during Onam festival. Many teams representing various batches presented their talents competing for best performance. The outgoing interns presented with a 30 member team which performed the dance. It was a treat for the eyes and mind. Later on it was followed with a traditional dinner where tapioca was served as the main dish. Tasty tapiocas were once the staple food of ancient Malayalees. Students gathered after the dinner to do the pre preparations for the major competition Athapookalam. Based on the set rules already published by the program committee they did the outline and basic works with full enthusiasm before going back to bed that night.
The next morning was completely occupied right from 5.30 am to complete the wonderful Athapookalams. After the Pookalam by 9.30 am a traditional procession was carried out by students representing the coming back of old king Mahabali accompanied with Chenda melam (traditional orchestra) later the procession ended up at Amriteshwari hall commencing the official function of Onam celebrations presided over by Br. Sankara Chaitanya, Medical Director, Amrita School of Ayurveda. It was followed by performances of various classical art forms by the teachers and students along with funny competitions associated with Onam celebrations.
Prize distribution to the winners of the competitions conducted in regard with Onam celebrations was also carried out. The program was followed with a delicious traditional lunch that had more than 15 varieties of dishes served in plantain leaves (ona sadya). Afternoon also witnessed various competitions and programmes that ended with Onam holidays. It was a great and memorable event in every ones mind who participated.
A two day arts-and-culture event on the campus is conducted by the students to exploit their inherent special talents. Competitions are held house-wise: Amritamayi, Anandamayi, Chinmayi and Jyothirmayi. Facilitated by the staff, students themselves are trained to organize the various events a part of their life at Amrita.
Amma's birthday finds an international gathering of Her devotees at Amritapuri in the month of September. Students are encouraged to participate in the service activities initiated by the Math during this time. Three days in September are marked as service days for the students of the campus.