Borrowed from SAMPADA old editions – for the 10th Anniversary Special Issue – Interviews section. This one is of Bannappa, Batch of 1963 Mech.
N S Bannappa is from 1963 Mechanical batch. He has worked in BOSCH as Methods/Machine Building Chief, in DELPHI as Production Engg Chief and many other companies in very high positions. He was a “Star Player” during his college days and we thank him for sharing the memories with us.
Team Sampada: What inspired you to get into the engineering field ?
Bannappa: Since my school days, I had a dream about becoming an Engineer. I am from rural background, my native being – Malnad – had heard about Engineers and dreamt of pursuing it as higher education. Though, being from modest background and without any support, I was good in sports even during my school days. Ours was the first PUC batch (earlier it was Intermediate batch after 10th) and I made it to University College of Engineering (then UCE) through merit. It was a dream come true for me!
Team Sampada: What are the memories about your participation in sports and college days?
Bannappa:I was very certain of joining Mechanical Engineering branch though there was lot of demand for Civil. I am not sure why though J I could pursue Engineering, irrespective of my family background, only because of free hostel and free college education. My situation was I could continue education only if I could get free accommodation and food facilities. I went to few of the hostel authorities and requested them to provide me the accommodation free of cost, based on my merit. They were very supportive and encouraged me because it was very rare achievement in those days (As a matter of fact, I stood first in PUC for my Taluk). I used to spend 12 Rs per month during those days (that too from Scholarship). I used to take part in athletics, kabaddi, volleyball and even wrestling. Though I may not look like one today, but in those days I was enthusiastic about all sport activities. But I could not completely dedicate towards sports, since my studies would get affected and in turn all the facilities that I had received due to merit alone would be lost.
I was also a good singer, mainly folk songs. I remember that once a Russian student delegation visited our college and a small gathering was organized in front of the library. My friends forced me to sing and I received lot of appreciation. This motivated me to represent college in various singing competitions as well.
Team Sampada: How was the competition and encouragement in sports in those days?
Bannappa: There was lot of encouragement from the college side. Prof. B R Narayan Iyengar, who himself was a Tennis Champion, was very supportive of students involved in sports. I admired and respected him a lot. Even to this day, I cherish the moments during which he took classes and his lessons. I guess Shantappa and Korumbayya were the Physical Educaton Trainers during then. I represented the college in Sprints (100 and 200m races) and won many medals (I have few of them safely with me even now). I was also a player of Kho-Kho. But my major focus was Kabaddi (even now few of my friends call me Kabaddi Bannappa)
I became the Kabaddi captain during my first year itself and continued for the next 4 years as well. In 1962, we won the Inter-Collegiate BMS Kabaddi Championship. We displayed the Trophy in the Quadrangle and I guess it is still preserved in college. In the same year, UP Kabaddi team visited here for an Exhibition match (which consisted many Indian National Team players) and I was selected to represent Karnataka State Kabaddi Team. In 1963, I was part of Mysore University Kabaddi Team to play in Inter University Kabaddi Tournament organized at Jabalpur.
Some of the other players were Sriram (from 63 batch) and his younger brother Ramanuja (64-65 batch) who played basketball well. Syed Khadri from our batch was University Champion in Tennis. I enjoyed every moment of college days and relish them even now. I could not focus much on sports after college since I joined HMT and had to take care of my family.
– Bannappa, 1963 Mech (From Sampada-75)