Mahindra Ecole Centrale College of Engineering, Hyderabad organised Niketh: A traditional housing challenge. The competition invited entries that focused on preserving the wisdom of traditional construction practices, viewing them through lens of science, engineering and technique. A total of 45 entries from across India were received for Niketh and 20 were shortlisted to present their models at the final round.
India has a unique mix of cultures and is also one of the oldest civilisations of the world and the diversity in culture, tradition and geography of India can be seen in traditional housing practices, which are eco-friendly and sustainable. Due to the present era of modernisation, the knowledge of traditional housing practices is on the brink of being lost.
MEC’s Niketh focused on three areas to judge the winning entries: Identifying the traditional Indian housing typology, Understanding the Science, Engineering and Construction Techniques and Building a scaled prototype (1:10, 1:15) of the original house.
The event began with the “I am that Change” video from Mahindra École Centrale. The Event was chaired by Prof. Bishnu P Pal, Dean Academics; Prof. Arya Kumar Bhattacharya, Dean R & D; Dr. Prabhakar Singh, Coordinator Civil Engineering; Dr. Ramachandra Prasad, IIIT-H; & Guest of Honour Mr. Prashant Lingam, Co-Founder of Bamboo House India. The event chair Dr. P. Venkata Dilip Kumar presented the vision and mission of Niketh and co-chair Ms. Prafulla Kalapatapu compered the whole event and officially welcomed the participants for Niketh’18.
In Phase 1 of MEC’s Niketh, a two-page article was submitted for the identified/chosen housing typology. The article explained the reasons for choosing a particular housing technique (typology, region, period of construction, materials, etc.). It also sought to share the entrant’s understanding with factual figures or references added. An expert panel of three evaluated the emailed article. All final teams were invited to build a scaled prototype, which was showcased at Mahindra Ecole Centrale.
The final winning team of Gnanaprakash & Manoj Kumar from SRIT, Anantapur for their “Mud House” received a cash award of Rs. 15,000/-. The two runner up teams of Rajat.T & Rajat .S from Nirma University for House of Jalwali, Satvik and Kishore from MEC for Bamboo house received a cash reward of Rs. 10,000/- each. Certificate of excellence and participation were given to all finalists.