Chandigarh, Sep 11, 2013 (Agency)
It has seen generations having fun and passing out and yet it hardly gives the feeling of being worn out or being old. A 'hot-spot' among students, the Panjab University Students' Centre continues to attract youngsters despite many other alternatives now being available.
Popularly known as 'Stu-C' it has only grown over time and the number of students coming there daily has also continued to swell.
While nearly a dozen small eating outlets around it do brisk business at all times, the Stu-C itself is a circular, three-storeyed building that was built in the late 1960s. With its grey facade, the building stands tall even today.
Housing one of the oldest coffee houses in the city, it is still abuzz with students, staff and other visitors to the campus. It also has a recreation room and offices of the Students' Council and the dean-students welfare (DSW).
"Many might call it a casual hang-out spot, for many it might be a walk down memory lane or for many it might just be a better spot than the city's famous Geri route for girl-watching, but not one student on the PU campus would deny being there at some time or the other," former PU Students' Council chief Rajan Chadha pointed out.
The Stu-C building was designed by Chandigarh's founder-architect Le Corbusier. Over the years, a range of shops have opened up in the complex, providing an ideal place for daily treats at very competitive and student-friendly prices.
"The quality that makes Stu-C popular is the variety of meals, snacks, street food and drinks available at reasonable rates. Ranging from south Indian, Chinese and fast food to north Indian to sandwiches, burgers, shakes and much more, Stu-C has it all," Jaspreet Kaur, a student, told IANS.
Except for a few, most of the items are priced below Rs 40.
"This place has changed over the past years. I remember the coffee house being the heart and soul of the university. We could never find a place to sit in the cafeteria at that time," said retired army officer Captain Rajneesh Talwar, owner of a popular gift and cards shop at Stu-C.
"Earlier this place was more calm and serene. One could come and relax here. But now with the new shops around the building, the place is always crowded," Jayanth Narayanpethkar, chairperson of the School of Communication Studies, told IANS. (..Contd.)