There’s a beautiful red building in Mangalore’s bustling city center, Hampankatte. Stone arches and green wooden windows seem to hang on to the grace of a bygone era. Around the heritage structure, the city slowly moves towards its millennial aspirations. The institute’s origins can be traced back to 1824 when a group of German Missionaries introduced English language education in coastal Karnataka. Over time, the institution grew and changed names. Now it is simply called the University College.
I spent a Saturday afternoon here, sketching in a shaded corner. With no classes going on, the campus was deserted. A handful of students lounged around the campus. Two teachers had turned up to oversee an NCC camp. I chatted with one of them, an English lecturer, who took me on a tour of the interiors. She held a small part in the popular Telugu movie, Arjun Reddy, where I first noticed this pretty building. We stopped in the recently-renovated Academy Hall where Tagore had given a talk almost a century ago.