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IIT-IIM Alumni Association organizes 4th Annual Q8OQ-2017
December 3, 2017, 4:33 pm

The Alumni Association of India’s Premium Institutions, IITs & IIMs, organized its spectacular annual open quiz program Q8OQ-2017 for the fourth year on 24 November at the Cambridge School’s Auditorium in Mangaf. The event was organized in association with Indian Business and Professional Council (IBPC), Kuwait and in partnership with Kuwait & Gulf Link Holding Company (KGL).

With every passing year, IIT-IIM Alumni Association’s open quiz has become very popular among the quiz enthusiasts and the general public alike. The uniqueness of this event is, it is open to all irrespective of age, nationality, qualification, gender or profession and the entry is free to everyone. The quiz was conducted by the very renowned quizmaster Giri Balasubramanium from India, popularly known across the world as ‘Pickbrain’.

The event proceedings began with Bhushan Joshi, the General Secretary of the IIT-IIM Alumni Association, Kuwait, welcoming all the dignitaries, members of IIT-IIM alumni & IBPC, the contestants and the spectators. It was followed by a moment on safety. Then he gave a brief on the format and salient features of the competition as well as the program.

The Format of the contest was at three levels – Written Prelims, Semi-finals and Grand Finale. However, the contest itself began several months ago, with each school conducting their intra school qualifying tests, and the committee of IITIIM alumni selecting their best teams for the event day prelims. More than 500 teams from various schools participated in these qualifying tests. Open teams, of course, joined directly into the written prelims, unlike the school kids. Every team consisted of three contestants. Initially, all the teams went through a qualifying round of tough 25 common questions. Top two finishing teams in the written prelims automatically went into the finals. Next best twelve teams were put through another qualification semi-final round divided into two groups of six each. Two teams each, from the two Semi-finals joined the finals, thus making a Grand Finale among six teams.

Once the written test was completed, while the answer papers were being corrected, the audience consisting of dignitaries, contestants, members of IIT-IIM Alumni association, Indian Business and Professional Council, Kuwait, school children and families were kept busy with the highly talented and much acclaimed local quizzer and the Alumni Core member Kalai Sevlan, who conducted an equally engrossing and challenging multiple rounds of quizzing, open to all the audience. This has kept the audience interested, as there were many fabulous spot prizes. Many knowledgeable and enthusiastic avid quizzers in the audience got several valuable prizes. 

The semi-finals and main grand finale event began after the felicitations of the honorable guests and co-hosts. Peeyush Jain, the President of the IIT-IIM Alumni Association welcomed the Star Quiz master, Mr.Giri, the Pickbrain and thanked all the dignitaries and guests who graced the occasion making it a grand success and all those who wholeheartedly supported the association. as well as the associate partners IBPC, who stood by us in organizing this event Indian Business and Professional Council, Kuwait was well represented by the large presence of their members led by the current Chairman, Mr. Bhasin, and Vice Chairman, Anant Kapadia. He also thanked the Chief Guest of the event Eman Ali, of Kuwait Boursa Company.

The guest of honor was the Charge de Affairs, Indian Embassy, Raj Gopal Singh. Other dignitaries from the Indian Embassy were also present encouraging everyone on behalf of the Embassy. The Chief Guest of the evening was Eman Ali (Executive Director – Strategic Transformation and CEO Office at Boursa Kuwait Company), who enhanced the event by her gracious presence. The President introduced her by listing her various academic and business accomplishments to the audience.

Boursa Kuwait CEO endorsed the Q8 Open Quiz 2017 event as their CSR portfolio activity and as an educative initiative. Boursa Kuwait’s participation reflects its commitments to supporting educational initiatives conveying the importance of this function in elevating the overall performance metrics of communities in the Kuwaiti market. The show is supported by Indian Business & Professional Council, with a directive to promote economic co-operation between Kuwait and India, and to provide a platform for interaction between Kuwaitis, Indians and other foreign residents.

The IBPC Chairman Mr. Bhasin (co-host) was felicitated. Mr. Bhasin fondly recalled association of IBPC with IITIIM Alumni Association and assured of their continued support in all the activities that will enhance the capabilities of the young minds and benefit the society. He recalled the various activities their association is conducting including inviting highly acclaimed prominent persons from India for enlightenment talks from a wide range of fields.

The IIT-IIM Association also felicitated, the affectionate and very popular Vice Chairman-IBPC, Kuwait, Anant Kapadia, who continues to be a great motivator and an ardent supporter in all the association’s proceedings, be it music or any other literary event.

The IIT-IIM Alumni Association President Peeyush Jain along with Raj Gopal Singh, Charge de Affairs, The Indian Embassy felicitated the quizmaster Giri Balasubramaniam – Pickbrain.

Mahesh Krishnan, CFO of KGL Holding and our event partners, spoke on behalf of his organization presenting a detailed account of the fantastic service they are doing as a Corporate Social Responsibility across the globe in his speech. The presentation included the various activities of the KGL as a global firm. He reiterated his company’s commitment to CSR activities and their continuous support to such events. He showed his pleasure in being a part of this event that also contributes to the society.

The Quizmaster for the event was Giri Balasubramanyam, popularly known as Pickbrain. He is a world-renowned leading quizmaster, seen every weekend on several Indian television channels hosting quiz shows. He has presented close to 2000 shows across 92 destinations in India, Singapore, Sri-Lanka, Japan, Kuwait, Middle East, UK and USA.

Mr. Giri is known for his distinctive techno-savvy style of quizzing, sense of humour coupled with great flair and approachable easy nature, which has earned him several accolades. Tata Crucible Business Quiz for Colleges & Corporates, TCS IT WIZ quiz for Schools, Reserve Bank of  India IQ quiz, Times of  Oman Quiz are some of the most popular shows hosted by Giri. He began his career as a media sales executive in 1992. In the year 2000, he quit a division of Walt Disney India Pvt. Ltd to pursue his passion for quizzing as a profession. Now, he heads Greycaps India Pvt. Ltd, India's largest onstage quiz Company, headquartered in Bangalore.

He is also a very popular author and creator of several knowledge-based books and architect of designing educational programs for schools across India. A popular speaker, educator, motivator and youth mentor who is regularly invited to deliver Keynotes or as a guest of honor at various educational institutions.

He received several prestigious awards and he holds seven Limca records for quizzing. He is an alumnus of the iconic elite Harvard University. He holds a Master’s degree in the Gandhian Philosophy.

The inaugural 2014, as well as the subsequent 2015 and 2016 events, were also resounding successes with more than 100 teams (3 members a side) from different nationalities participating for the Crown. Following last year’s success which marked the participation of more than 30 international schools and more than 1500 audience attendances during the finals, this year’s 4th edition continued to embark on a grand success path.

A Quiz contest questions and determines a person’s ability to quickly present the correct answer from ones’ repository of knowledge matched equally by unlimited imagination and zest.  This year the program has reached new scales of the test, crossing the high bar set last year with the enthusiastic participation over 100 quiz aficionados from all walks of life, sizes, ages, gender, nationalities including few tiny tots.

The quizmaster too was an exception, with his distinctive style of high-quality quizzing, great sense of humor, impromptu quick wit and affable personality. The quiz participants and the avid enthusiastic audience were enthralled with a great range of interesting questions posed. With unique format aided by efficient electronic gadgets and software systems, the event was conducted in a flawlessly smooth seamless fashion.

The IIT IIM Alumni Association in Kuwait is an association of alumni of the premier Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs). Registered as a professional association with the Embassy of India in Kuwait, the association functions under the auspices of the Honourable Ambassador of India to Kuwait as its Patron. The Association represents a vast blend of talent and experience from very senior executives to the high energy of youngsters who have just embarked on their professional journeys.

The quiz was of very high quality, with a great range of cryptic questions drawn from different fields of arts, science, sports, politics, fiction etc. from medieval to modern ages, and needless to say, the competition was very stiff.  Pickbrain in between kept the audience attentive to his very interesting and fascinating audience questions, as many prizes were open to them as well.

The top team from DPS, under the team name; 'Quizzers of Oz’, represented by brilliant kids, Rohita Mahesh, Rishav Vyas and Jos Roy, were simply superb who topped both the prelims and finals with cool calmness combined with a star performance. They were the well-deserved true winners in every sense of competence metrics. The School Kids proved that the practice and the current form is of paramount importance, to take up the field, not just to rest on their past pedigree and laurels - a lesson well taught to their senior fellow competitors bestowed with advantages such as age, experience, higher qualifications, vast professionals competence etc.

They were closely followed by their fellow schoolmates Aditya Ashok, Anand Krishna Kumar and Jaidev Shriram competing under their School name DPS. In the third place, were the worthy trio of Harish Babu, Yash Alva and Nevin Salu, operating under a very funky name ‘Winner Winner Chicken Dinner from Gulf Indian School’.  These brave hearts challenged everyone risking their position all the time eventually finished Second Runner-up, in the process denying DPS what would have been a day of clean sweep as the next best School team was also won by  the DPS under the name of ‘Les Quizerables’ represented by Sharath Menon, Aaron John Thomas and Rohan Saji John. The best title name prize went to the Team from GIS, consisting of Sanjay Mathew, Barath Kumar and Fahad Ahmad, thus sharing the five prizes in the ratio of 3:2 with DPS.

Therefore, these two Schools from the South of Kuwait in Ahmadi Governorate made a clean sweep of all the prizes, leaving rest of the Governorates and Senior Quizzers Teams high and dry. This year, the quality and the value of prizes was raised to attract the best of the talent among the competing teams. The Principals of DPS and GIS, Anju Dheman and Shyamala Diwakaran, respectively, were made to feel proud by the achievements of their wards.

The program ended with a vote of thanks proposed by General Secretary of the Association Bhushan Joshi. He thanked the associate partners IBPC, the event partners KGL, the quizmaster Pickbrain, Chief Guest, Guest of Honour, other Dignitaries', all the quizzers, Sponsors, Principals, teachers, parents, volunteers and all concerned who have contributed in making the evening an enjoyable and extremely invigorating quizzing experience. He welcomed all to be a part of this event in coming years too. Vote of thanks was followed by the prize distribution.

The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and The Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) are globally renowned premier Indian institutions of higher education in the fields of Engineering Technology and Management, respectively. The association can be reached at or the official website

It is the aim of IIT-IIM Alumni association to promote the knowledge quest, high-quality competitive spirit and expose the residents of Kuwait especially the young students to take a path of knowledge seeking and in the process improve themselves and the society around them. With this noble high aim, the Association conducts this Annual Quiz Event, which is its signature event. 

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