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Tuesday , November 20 , 2012
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Guest who shared & cheered

IICP students perform at the institute’s 38th anniversary celebrations on Sunday. (Arnab Mondal)

She participated in an impromptu quiz, shared her zodiac sign and had words of praise and encouragement for the children. They, in turn, filled her heart with love. Bengal’s first lady Padmini Narayanan’s visit to the Indian Institute of Cerebral Palsy (IICP) on Sunday turned out to be a special day for all.

Narayanan was at IICP to inaugurate The Elements: Air, Water, Fire and Earth, a multimedia presentation put up by the students and teachers of the institute to commemorate its 38th anniversary.

She took a tour of the exhibition and interacted with the students. “What is your zodiac sign?” Narayanan asked Rahul, a student who welcomed her to the life-skill training unit and explained the display on zodiac signs grouped according to temperament based on the four basic elements.

Rahul promptly responded that he was a Sagittarian since his birthday was on December 8 and went on to list the traits of Sagittarians. Narayanan shared that her granddaughter, born on December 6, is a Sagittarian as well. Asked by an IICP official about her zodiac sign, she said it was Aquarius.

At the vocational training unit, trainees Biswajit Majumdar and Abhijit Sen asked Narayanan what was common among Jog, Angel, Niagara and Victoria. “Falls,” came the quick reply, much to the delight of the quizmasters.

Narayanan was no less impressed. “I am so overwhelmed by what I have seen. It gives me great pleasure to be here. I am so glad that I decided to come. A lot of effort, a lot of passion and a lot of everything go into this kind of work. I feel humbled that I am not doing so much and feel very happy when I see others doing it. Today I am overwhelmed and my heart is filled with love,” said the first lady, who was gifted a stole from the block-printing unit of IICP. Safila Rehman also gave a live demonstration on block printing.

Students of Ankur, the advocacy group of adults with disability, presented a short skit called Aamra Shobai Raja that called for an inclusive world with no discrimination and equal rights for everyone.

“For the last 38 years, we have been working towards an inclusive community, where everybody has the right to equal opportunity and rehabilitation,” said Subhra Chatterjee, deputy director, IICP.

From the use of the elements in various occupations and the discovery of fire by prehistoric men to the use and sources of water along with the need for its conservation, the various terrains of earth and soil conservation were depicted at the exhibition. The use of air was explained with the help of mythological characters Pawan Dev and Hanuman and a Chinese folk tale.