Abid Tharavattath started his career as a computer programmer at Wayanad Government Engineering College, but he was determined to revolutionise the National Service Scheme (NSS) for students. Now, five years later, Abid is the NSS Programme officer at Kozhikode Government Engineering College and has been instrumental in guiding his NSS unit to win 23 awards including a national award for the best unit and one personal award — best programme officer from the President of India.
“I always wanted to be part of the NSS unit of Wayanad Government Engineering College. But it failed to take off. So I started an IT club at the college. The idea was to impart computer knowledge to 20 people from each ward in the Panchayat. Two years after the club was formed I was transferred to Government Engineering College, Kozhikode,” says Abid.
In his five years here, he formed a strong and efficient NSS unit with 113 volunteers. “The students here are extremely dedicated and hardworking. Usually we only find units with 100 volunteers,” he says.
His strategy was to make good use of the time given to them and bring about maximum productivity. The most successful project introduced under his guidance is ‘Akshara Deepam’, to increase the reading habit among school and college students. “Our NSS unit will be providing books to libraries in rural areas as part of the project,” he says.
The services of Abid’s unit were recognised locally, as well as at the state and national level. Abid is also in charge of the college Red Ribbon Club and the Bhoomitra Sena, the environmental protection club which won the state level award for the Best Bhoomitra Sena in February this year.