Friday, August 14, 2020

Success Story 6 - RISHABH DEVNATH

Success Story 6 - Rishabh Devnath

Rishabh Devnath

(Founder & Director - Toshan Creations)

“Whatever you do, do it well. Do it so well that when people see you do it, they will want to come back and see you do it again and they will want to bring others and show them how well you do what you do.” -Walt Disney

A very deep-rooted thought from a person who changed the dynamics of the movie industry and broke stereotypes. An Event that changed Movie History for many more years to come. A pure work of self-belief wherein a common Man rose from shambles and etched his name in the Movie business. Towing on the same thought without breaking the thought process, we are attempting to bring to you an eventful story of a common who is the most sought for, A name to be reckoned for and a Brand that is slowly emerging in the world of Event Management business. It’s our honour and privilege to present to you the story of a Common Man who marked his presence with a difference and has risen high with his Uncommon work. We at Ek New Life take great pride in bringing this small inspirational story of Dev (Rishabh Devnath).

Rishabh is from Delhi and is the eldest of the two children and was born to a Middle-class Family, where his father was working for a leading Hindi daily named, Amar Ujala Press and his mother was a homemaker. Currently his father is retired from service and is into stocks and share trading. His Younger brother is pursuing Final Year program of Pharm D and is awaiting to complete his internship and start with his professional journey. His father was in Nepal for a professional assignment and during that time, His mother single handedly shouldered the responsibility of raising 2 kids. 

Dev was a bundle of talent from childhood and one could clearly notice the creative bend in him from a very young age. It was during this time, that His Mother was his biggest support system and she even spotted the raw and multifaceted talent of a performer in Dev. She used to encourage him to participate in various performing arts and his debut program was his show at the Kalakriti School of Art & Culture (KSAC) where he performed in Juniors category. He never realized that Music was a natural talent to him, and he was gifted with that Talent as a blessing. Back in school, He had a Music teacher called Mr. Mondal. His Music teacher one day walked into class and asked all the students to step forward and sing the National Anthem. All the students came forward and performed the rendition of National Anthem. But as soon as Dev started his performance, His Music Teacher’s eye lit up and he asked him if he does know any other song. Dev immediately sang a song from the movie Main Hoon Na. The class applauded him, and the Music teacher asked Dev to get his mother for the PTM. Now this left Dev all perplexed, cos he was wondering what mistake he did, that his Mother has been summoned for the PTM. He hesitantly called his mother and they both went to meet the Music Teacher. Mr. Mondal was all praise for Dev’s voice and praised the way he sang the song. 

He wanted to check how many students could render the National Anthem as it is with the correct pronunciations considering that our National Anthem is in Bangla. The Music Teacher was spell bound with Dev’s rendition and was very impressed with the way he sang, and he also liked his voice quality. He requested Dev’s mother if she can allow him to stay back after school for 1 hr. so that Dev can be trained in singing and music. 

This was a tricky and worrisome thing for Dev’s mother. With his Father being in Nepal and the school being so far, it’s quite difficult for his mother to come to pick Dev from school after the Music class and there was no one else who could pick Dev from school as well. So very reluctantly, his Mother declined the Music teacher’s request. However, she knew it for good that Dev was interested in Music and if this talent is nurtured well, he would go places. Above all of that, she didn’t want to disappoint Dev. So, she spoke to the van driver and made some arrangements to be picked up post his Music class every day. Thus, started his sojourn journey of Music. And this training was not just limited to singing, Dev started picking up a liking for musical instruments like Tabla, Manjeera and Congo. This training helped him hone his skills and he slowly started attending shows, performances and started winning awards. 

Post shifting to Chandigarh, he joined Dikshant International school, where he completed grades from 6th -8th. It was here that he picked up the finer nuances of Theatre and Music. And this led to his journey of participation on stage there onwards. He was participating in a play wherein he was playing the character of GUIDE portrayed by the yesteryear legendary actor Devanand. To his good luck the Chief Guest of the function was renowned Bollywood Director Mr. Anurag Kashyap. He was the childhood friend of Dev’s school principal and was invited to be the Guest of Honour. Post the performance, all the kids who had performed very well were asked to meet Anurag Kashyap. And Dev was touched by the inspiring words of Anurag Kashyap. He pointed out Dev’s talent and his spontaneity along with dialogue delivery. These inspiring words worked like Magic on Dev and enthused in him a new wave of confidence and self-belief. Dev does admit that he wasn’t great in studies but excelled in all forms of performing arts and was known to be a star performer in his school times. Luckily all this attention and applause never went to his head and he managed to keep his head on his shoulder. However, he did evidently notice that this new-found recognition was creating a lot of jealousy and animosity amongst his peers who felt that Dev is being given a lot of preferential Treatment.

Sometime into his job, his father had an opportunity to come back to India and he too felt that He should be spending more time with his family especially with his growing up sons. He had 3 options of Work place to choose from, Bihar, Allahabad and Chandigarh. His father chose Chandigarh. Dev was then enrolled into SD Public School located in Sector 32, Chandigarh and Dev continued his performing streak here as well. SD School and College was known to be an institution wherein, the prime focus was given on Core Academics and Sports. It was an institution that was a dream for every aspiring commerce student and budding sportsperson. Probably, that’s one reason as to why it earned the befitting title of the ‘College of Toppers’, Toppers in Academics & Sports in the entire Northern India belt. It was known more for organizing inter-school Basketball competition and Interstate Boxing competitions. Dev took a liking for dancing and he picked up various dance forms, but he was extremely good in Popping, something he had to put in the back-burner for some time in the past. Popping dance is a style of dance that started in the late 1960's and 70's. This dance style is characterized by sudden tensing and releasing of the muscles ("hitting") to  the rhythm of beats in music. Along with Dancing, he nurtured his love for painting. He became keenly interested in painting and the vivid, varied colors cast a beautiful spell on his mind, and he was able to translate his thoughts beautifully etched with perfect colors from his palate. Dev participated in numerous competitions and even secured an All India Rank in Seniors category for a painting competition conducted by Camel colors. This gave him a lot of recognition amongst students and teachers. 

He was a live wire and was busy organizing events in school and he was in charge of the Annual Sports meet wherein 25 schools come from various locations of the Northern Region to his school to participate in various sports activities spanning over 4 days. All these 4 days, It was Dev’s responsibility to ensure that everything falls into place and everything pans out smoothly. During these events, there used to be constant demand for his solo Dance or Group dance performance. It was only post the dance performances of Dev that SD School started to be known as a fierce competitor in Dance programs among the Chandigarh school circle. His fan following and recognition was growing by leaps and bounds. Along with these events, Dev was also responsible of organizing and executing  of inter-school Basketball competition and Interstate Boxing competitions along with the opening and closing ceremonies of these events as well.

Along with being a performer, Dev was a keen prankster who has probably done the weirdest pranks in school. Be it, Turning the blades of the Fan, Covering the Eye of CCTV camera with a sock, Bursting crackers on the Terrace and causing commotion in school and throwing Benches from his first-floor classroom. You name it and he has done it. He for sure feels way to awkward discussing about that today, cos when he looks back now, he still can’t figure the reason as to what transpired him to even do something as foolish as this. 

On one side he was encouraged by Teachers like Pooja Mam, who used to teach him Maths to follow his dreams and never shy from failures and keep practicing his moves until he gets it right and on the other hand, there were teachers like his Accounts teacher who was against him whiling away his time dancing and teaching other students to dance. Although he was a junior, he used to end up choreographing dance moves for senior students as well. So just before one month of his Annual day, Dev used to be pertinently out of class post the Lunch break. His Accounts teacher used to stop him in the hallway and corridor and always tried to reason with him to focus on studies and not waste his time with dance and performances. But Dev didn’t pay any heed to her and he did what he felt like. And the worst happened when he didn’t clear his Pre-Board in accounts paper. He had to reattempt Accounts paper 9 times and finally he cleared it. His Accounts teacher was against giving him the Final Exam Hall ticket as well. It took a lot of persuasion from his Mother and the Teacher gave the Hall ticket just one day before his exams. Dev can’t forget the emotional trauma that he had to undergo and the dilemma he was facing about giving the exams till date. His only remorse being that, the teachers should have been a bit more considerate with him as this episode left him emotionally and mentally drained. 

He finally gave the exams and cleared it with a good percentile. And this is where his first struggle starts. Post the exam clearance, he didn’t have any clue as to what career to choose and which stream should he opt for? Dev looks up to his father a lot and trusts his father for that Key advise when he feels lost and disillusioned. His father spoke to him and asked him to do a quick thinking about what he wants to do in life. The BEST thing about his father was that, he didn’t force his thought on Dev, but allowed him to explore options and come back to him with an Answer to his question about Career Choice and Goals in life.

Dev resorted to GOOGLE for getting answers to his questions. This was almost like searching Needle in a haystack. With absolutely no idea what to search for? Dev was lost. He suddenly remembered one of his friends speaking about events and his intrinsic quality about organizing events. That’s how his first search started and that’s how he was clear with the concept of Events and what are the different types of events. Slowly, he understood what Event Management is and he started exploring colleges that offer courses in Event Management. His search lead him to NAEMD (National Academy of Event Management and Development) based out of Mumbai, Pune, Ahmedabad , Jaipur and Delhi. He also  searched for other institutes, however they were offering him either a 1-year diploma or a PG Diploma program. But NAEMD was the only institute that was offering a 3-year BBA Degree course in Event Management. Dev was anyways planning to do a Degree course and here he was being offered a 3-year Degree course in Event Management. So, he jumped at the opportunity and spoke to his father about the same. They didn’t want Dev to go to Mumbai and Pune and the only option was Jaipur. So, he along with his father visited the campus in Jaipur and they underwent a counselling session for almost 1.5 hrs individually.  

Post the counselling, He was put off with the onward look of the Campus and infrastructure. It didn’t meet my expectations of a well-established campus. And this put me in a bigger jeopardy. I was confused if this degree will be valid and will my decision to pick this career option wont backfire. And once again, during his crisis’s moments, His Father came up to him and suggested that its nothing wrong in giving it a TRY and if he doesn’t feel that this course is helping him, he can very well discontinue it. It just goes to speak volumes about his father, who never pressurized Dev to complete the course, but ended up giving him a backup plan to think if this course backfires. Dev was convinced and they paid the fees and came back to Chandigarh.

He left Chandigarh on 26th July 2014, he left Chandigarh to pursue his BBA degree course. The best thing about NAEMD was that only 40% of the course was limited to Theory and the rest 60% was completely focused on Practical On JOB Training. The entire Theory part was completed within a months’ time and the rest of the time was spent on job training. Dev liked everything about the course, but he always felt that they weren’t equipped with the right tools and knowledge to hit the production so soon. Moreover, they were never sent as Freshers or 1st year or 2nd year students. So, when they are working on an event, they will be asked to do something which a 3rd year student will be knowing, and this lack of knowledge and exposure used to prove costly and Dev used to end up getting reprimanded in public for no mistake of his. He still feels that Every student being sent out for a Practical assignment should be prepared thoroughly to handle difficult situations. And this was one reason as to why many students dropped out of the course mid-way. The academic year started with 77 students and this slowly dwindled down to 63 students. This was Dev’s initial hiccup, and this was just the beginning. He also noticed that there are lots of partiality done and there was an evident partial lobby existing amongst students and management as well. And that’s when Dev decided to grab the bull by the horns. He had no option but try to fit in or fall out. Dev decided to do what he is best at. He chose to speak up and allowed himself to be heard out. Dev was asked to attend this interview in Business formals. The interviews had their OWN sweet struggles and that made Dev all the more nervous. During his interviews, a set of earlier candidates were called in one by one, but when Dev’s turn came up, he was called in along with 4 other candidates. Dev knew that this is his make or break moment and he patiently waited for his chance. When his turn came to speak, Dev exhibited his multi-tasking abilities and ability to handle complex situations using his skills. Everyone was surprised with the way this young boy spoke and that caught the attention of the panelists as well. 

He had bit the bullet now and Dev had started attending interviews for various event companies. It was a grueling time for Dev as he was competing against a lot of batchmates to get onto that one prized first break. It took a lot of time and patience for him to get his first break. The Rann Utsav is one mega event that is organized in Gujarat. The White Rann, near the Great Rann of Kutch was written off as lifeless stretch of land, the Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Limited (TCGL) took the initiative of introducing ‘White Rann Experience’ to the world in 2005. What began as a three-day festival progressively evolved into a 100-day celebration at Dhordo, a village near Rann of Kutch where a whole new tent city has been created, replete with temporary infrastructure built and rebuilt every year. 

This Mega event of Rann Utsav is the brainchild of Ahmedabad based company, Lallooji & Sons (LJS). Lallooji & Sons (LJS)is a 360° turnkey solutions event management company. They have the unique distinction of conceptualizing, visualizing, and executing The Rann Utsav from scratch with seamless implementation and excellent infrastructure.

This entire event has its own challenges of Climate, dealing with labourers of different cultures, interacting with people of a different language to name a few. These challenges were not unknown to his batchmates. Fortune favors the Brave and that’s what Dev did. He took up this challenge and opted for being part of the team that will be working on the Rann Utsav. He knew it very well that there are loads of Fears and Apprehensions attached to this project, but Fear is not good for great and that’s what helped Dev to be motivated and pick up on this challenge.

The first hurdle of selection was all done, but now starts the real challenge. The Rann of Kutch is nothing but desert, it doesn’t have any Hotel or resorts out there. The Tent City is a temporary set up and it might look like an ordinary tent from the outside, but one step into the tent and you will realize that its nothing less than a 5-star experience. The toughest challenge was to create this structure and the second challenge was the weather and atmosphere. The Scorching heat, Humidity in the air and heavy breeze used to make it next to impossible to work. The entire Tent city was divided into zones starting from A – F and every Zone had a specific number of tents. Dev learnt the biggest lesson of his life here, i.e. Working against adversity and still completing the task. For the initial 22 days, Dev had to resort to defecating in the open using a water mug just like olden times. Sun Burns and scalds and tight deadlines were becoming a regular norm for Dev. They had to report at 6:30 AM, Finish Breakfast by 7 AM and start work immediately. They used to work nonstop from 7 Am to 3 AM in the morning and would hardly sleep for 3 hrs. With this relentless hard work, they were able to complete erecting the tents in a record time of 16 days. But this humungous effort also taught some valuable lessons to Dev. He learnt to co-ordinate and work with labourers and get the tasks done from them. It also sharpened his production values and that was a key learning from this assignment. In spite of all these hardships he has some funny anecdotes to share from the Rann Utsav. It was 3 in the morning and one Guest comes over to Dev and requests for Lukewarm milk for his baby. It was 3 Am and the Pantry had already closed, and they were in Rann of Kutch which is absolutely cut off from the outside world. Dev says that it was hilarious as well as quite a task to comfort that guest that getting luke warm at that point of the hour was just impossible. One more learning for Dev, to be patient and drive his point through the guest with politeness.

Going to Rann Utsav cost Dev 2 massive weddings and other events. The 3 months that Dev spent there was equivalent to other students doing 7-8 events in Jaipur and Delhi. Until now, Dev had done Rajasthan Film Festival Awards, Jaipur Cycle marathon and Rann Utsav.

Dev just had 3 events to his credit, whereas there were others who were boasting about working on prestigious events. But then Dev wasn’t remorseful cos he knew it very well that what he achieved from the Rann experience is unmatchable.

To his good luck, Dev was called out for the Biyani wedding which had a budget of 59 crore INR. Post this wedding, one more opportunity came knocking. Just 9 days after the Biyani Wedding, NAEMD had shortlisted 170 candidates for the BIG FAT Wedding. Out of the 170 students, the final 16 were selected and Dev featured in the final 16. Within hours, Dev was sitting in Udaipur to attend this maximum Gala wedding of Hinduja’s with a budget of 15 Million US$. There was a selfish intent for accepting this Udaipur assignment. Being a Movie buff, Dev always wanted to visit Udaipur after seeing the Hindi movie, ‘Yeh Jawani hain Deewani’

This event was scheduled from 26th Jan – 31st Jan 2015 and was being planned and executed under the flagship of WedNiksha. WEDNIKSHA comes from the stable of WIZCRAFT- A premier Event management company who has the credit of hosting Filmfare, IIFA, GIMA, Common Wealth Games, Theatrical productions like Zangoora etc. WEDNISKHA is a part of Wizcraft and is an end to end solution for Weddings. Star performers like Jennifer Lopez was invited for this wedding. 

It took some time for Dev to allow the magnanimous wedding feeling to sink in. This was an event that was covered by media all throughout and the entire city of Udaipur and star hotels like , Taj Lake palace, Chunda Palace, Taj Fateh Prakash Palace, Oberoi Udai Vilas, were booked in Full for the next 7 days. The money spent and splurged didn’t have any limits. It was extravaganza at the maximum. Dev learnt a lot of things about Production and Décor which are his key forte. The best thing about Dev was that he didn’t stop learning at any point of time. Creativity & innovation is to events, what the heart & soul is to the living. He kept learning and working hard. These events required a lot of his time and creativity and Dev didn’t hesitate to give his best. This event saw his people spending money on issues that might sound very trivial to us. The entire Runway of Udaipur Airport was exclusively booked for the guests, cos this runway was close to the Exit lounge and the Guests don’t have to walk for a long time. 

Lady Luck smiled on Dev once again and he was selected to be part of another bigger wedding venture with an estimated budget of 400 Crore INR within a period of 1.5 years. This mega event was coordinated, conceptualized and executed by an Israeli based company called Sky Productions. This was held in Jag mandir island of Udaipur. This was an imaginative wedding that pushed the creative bar. It catered to over 2000+ guests over 5 days. It was conceptualized on the Mid-summer Night’s Dream theme with Carousel roundabout, Central stage built with a giant music box in which live musicians performed and from which the couple greeted their guests, 7.5-meter chandelier, World food from the kitchens from Asia and India and Exquisite food from Mirazur. It’s a restaurant in Menton, France rated with three stars by the Michelin Guide. There were Invitation letters sent out with inbuilt Microchip and every attendee could be tracked and only authorized guests were allowed into the wedding venue. If any Guest forgets the invitation letter, he can’t be allowed inside.  Such was the grandeur of this wedding that it won the Silver Metal in the Group-D of Experiential Celebrations -WOW Awards Asia

This assignment was successfully done, and he came back to his institute and he could vividly sense that there was a growing feeling of discontent amongst his peers who thought that the best of best events is being assigned to Dev. But sadly no one realized that the sole purpose of Event Management is to create a client who creates other clients. However, no one realized the sweat and blood that Dev gave into finishing off these assignments. DID Season-5 was coming to Jaipur for auditions. The moment this news came up, he could suddenly see 250 applicants for this. The requirement was just of 40 people for DID Season 5 event in Jaipur. Dev was selected for this and this opened up a pandora box of reality shows for him. 

He has done every reality show that we can name off, Dance Plus, India’s got Talent, Master chef, Saa re ga ma pa etc.... During this time, he was always on the move. He used to travel frantically between Jaipur, Udaipur, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Delhi on a everyday basis. He was virtually living his life out of a suitcase. He used to travel from Chandigarh to Jaipur. He used to catch an evening train to Jodhpur and then work there and travel back to Udaipur and from there to Jaisalmer and then reach back to Jaipur. So, he was always on the move and the run was in rotation. He used to work extensively and hardly slept for few hours. The long grueling work hours took a toll on his health and he became thinner by the day. He reached to a body weight of 45kg which was dangerous for his health He didn’t go home for over 9 months and he finally went home for Diwali for 7 days. And then post Diwali he was back to square one working hard. He covered 98 events in a matter of 3 years and all through this, he worked with a simple belief that, What you need, is an Event, to remember for a lifetime!!!

One good thing leads to another and I was asked to go along with a batch of 16 students from NAEMD to assist in a wedding preparation that had Amrita Bhanji at the helm of all the preparations. This one event helped Dev establish a professional rapport with Amrita Bhanji’s team. The per day stipend was around 400-500 Rs INR, However, Dev was paid 800 Rs INR in par with her team members for this event. She used to do hospitality services for many companies. Dev’s good work and astute dedication made him to be reckoned for and he was a part of all the major assignments carried out by Amrita Bhanji in and around Jaipur.  In a place called Kukas, there are top resorts of Jaipur where destination wedding happens. In this place, there are 2 hotels called Fairmont Jaipur and Le Meridian Resort and Spa Jaipur. There were 750 guest Pax and these hampers had to go three times in a day. And Dev and his friend managed to deliver the hampers successfully to all the guest rooms in no time. Amrita was very happy with their work and effort and paid them 2500 rupees INR per day stipend. Post the completion of the 9-day work, Dev and his friend were called and handed over a cheque of the per day Stipend amount X 9 days of work and that was amounting to a huge sum.  Such was the impression of Dev, that Whenever Amritha used to come to Jaipur, she always contacted Dev to help her with the Event Management work.

He finished his education in 2017 and was sitting back at home. That’s when he gets called out to reach Jaipur for a Mega wedding where he was assigned the task of Décor for a budget of 1.5 crore INR. Until that time, Dev had worked for the event in totality, but here he was being offered work for focusing just on Décor. This was the first time that Dev was handling an independent project, and this tested Dev’s creativity and perfection wherein he decorated the Entrance and Flowers and Floral arrangement.

Post this event, Dev came back to Chandigarh and was almost sitting idle. He didn’t want to go to Delhi and Mumbai to work for Peanuts and zero job satisfaction. Dev didn’t want to be the run of the mill kind of employee. He felt he needs to give wings to his creativity and do and learn the best. He tried reactivating all his contacts and network, but suddenly there was pin drop silence on the work front and this buzzing silence was killing Dev from within. 

At this juncture, he met his school friend, Uddeshya who guided him towards digital marketing. Dev took up this course and while learning, he learnt how to create website and other facets of Digital marketing. Over a period of time, Dev did realize that Digital Marketing can be explored more if he had his OWN Brand. Alternatively, the kids who used to work with him always nudged Dev to venture into his OWN Business venture and build a Brand out of his name. 

Thus, the idea of TOSHAN, germinated from an idea and became a full-fledged business venture. The name and the Logo were suggested by his father. TOSHAN means satisfaction in Sanskrit. The logo has a shree Yantra in it and the T and C they signify the stems of the  Lotus. The company was formally registered in December 2018. They have completed around 24 events under the flagship of Toshan creations. 

However, there was this one anguish deep down in his heart, He always wanted to take up work of Roadies. And this dream got fulfilled when he received a call from Roadies team if he was willing to be part of the Roadies Auditions. The only glitch was that he was supposed to be travelling with the crew all over India. Dev readily agreed to this offer and became a proud member of Team Roadies. He made a request to the Roadies management, if he can get the complete contract for Roadies Auditions in Chandigarh. The Roadies team gave it a good thought and understood that Dev was a seasoned player of conducting events and granted him this order as well. This was the time wherein he needed a Branded event to be a part of his clientele. 

The journey is known by the miles covered and the only proof of an eventful journey would be the milestones crossed at each point. Similarly, Dev’s journey has been eventful, and he has covered many a milestone in his short stint in this industry. In totality, in the last 6 years Dev has single handedly managed and executed over 250+ Events till date and over 50+ reality shows pan India. He has been the dream merchant and fulfilled the dreams of many a bride and groom in successfully organizing 80+ Destination weddings pan Indian till date. He has been instrumental in doing 2 Auditions for Roadies in Chandigarh.

Dev personally believes that he prefers Destination Wedding. It’s a big misconception that Destination wedding is costly. However, Destination weddings are easier cos so many things get customized and we can keep control over things, and all this is possible cos the guest list will be limited. We have the entire Hotel at our disposal, and everything is as per our Choice 

Dev always believed that If he has reached to these levels of success, then it’s possible for anyone and everyone to reach here as well. He clearly remembers that his Mother wasn’t appreciative of this career option and she wanted him to do bachelor’s in commerce. However, there was a phone call from NAEMD who conveyed the key message that Dev is doing very good and excelling in this field of Events Management. 

He understands today that there are many people in India who don’t know anything about this course, and they are highly confused about courses to choose as a career. And this confusion leads nowhere. 

Dev strongly believes that Success isn’t easy. He has heard a famous adage, One has to fulfill his needs with his hard-earned money and fulfill their wishes with the hard-earned money of parents. However, Dev believes that he will consider himself successful when he spends his hard-earned money to fulfill his needs and wishes. He believes in saving money and not flaunting the same. He is very meticulous in his savings and believes in investing money in Real estate and Stocks trading. He believes that Youngsters of today have to become more responsible and spend money carefully. He is moved by the callous nature of youth and people who zoom in cars and end up burning the fuel only to show off and flaunt their prowess and power. 

He looks up to his father and is immensely influenced by his Father's way of approach towards Life and its values. Dev is like a sponge who learns by observing people, hence he can pinpoint any one single person as his Role model. He believes in Goodness and values this goodness and wants to learn and imbibe good values from all the people he meets every single day. He quotes an incident wherein he had gone to an event which had Sushant Singh Rajput in attendance. Dev and his 2 friends wanted to take a pic with Sushant Singh. But his Bouncers weren’t allowing anyone near him. Sushant noticed this and he came over and spoke to the girls and obliged for a selfie. Dev clicked it and hence he had to miss out from the pic. Dev walked along with Sushant and opened the car door for him. Susanth told Dev that it wasn’t required, but Dev insisted and the moment he sat in the car, Sushant Thanked Dev for his kind gesture. 

He fondly remembers one more incident during his college days, where his life was on a strict rationed budget. He used to get around 6-7k rupees INR every month and most of the times, he used to fall short of money by end of the month. At that point of time, he used to be barely managing able to make ends meet. In that scenario there was this Savory seller who used to sell paani puri’ for a living. He used to offer Paani Puri on  credit to Dev and his friend Sidhanth. The credit started soaring high and it reached 250 Rupees INR. But, in spite of this, the vendor never asked for the money nor did he stop serving paani puri to Dev and his friend. What amazed Dev was the selfless intent of the vendor? He was a normal vendor and this amount would have meant a lot to him. However, he never wanted us to be on an empty stomach and made sure that he kept us tummy full all the time. The stipend money that Dev used to earn with these events used to reach his hand mostly after 5-6 months of the event completion. The moment Dev got his stipend money, he made it sure that he first clears the dues of the paani puri vendor. On the same lines, there was a Laundry vendor who used to launder Dev’s clothes and never kept a count of the clothes being laundered. It was Dev who had to once remind him about his dues and even then, the Laundry vendor didn’t agree that Dev owed him any money. Dev had to reiterate and remind him about the dues and only then did the vendor accept the money. The interesting fact about these 2 people were their simplicity and their immense trust in their clients. 

They could have resisted giving anything on credit, but their goodness paved way for them and No one would ever cheat a Good Man and especially that person who has fed you and ensured that you might get up Hungry, but you shouldn’t sleep Hungry for the night. Truly, this was a lesson that he learnt, Goodness is something that is directly proportional to What Goes Around, Comes Around!!!!! 

Dev believes in karma a lot. There was a college in Chandigarh called MCM DAV College in Sector-36. It’s an All Girls college. They have an Annual fest called Meraki it was their 3rd edition of Meraki. One of Dev’s friends named Shwetha Sharada who was part of Dance Deewane and other dance shows was invited to be a part of Meraki. The organizers also asked Dev to send his portfolio as well. Within 2 days, Dev got a call from the fest organizers that they want him to come over as a Chief Guest. Dev couldn’t believe his ears. He was anticipating being called as a judge for a dance event. But here, he was being invited as a Chief Guest. The day before the show, the invite was uploaded, and it became a rage. Dev remembers it very well that on the day of the program, As he entered the auditorium, he was stopped by the Guards. The Fest volunteer rushed and stopped the bouncer and told him that Dev was indeed the Chief Guest. He recalls till date that volunteers of Meraki Fest took such good care of him and fed him so well that even his Mother comes second to the kind of hospitality that Meraki volunteers offered. It’s ironic that the same college which was out of reach for him, he attended the same college’s Annual fest as a Chief Guest.

The reason for this post was not to speak just about Dev’s work and his accomplishments. Dev strongly feels that Event Management as a course is not known to many. There is a need to create awareness about this and everyone should know the nitty grit ties of this course. When he started the course, not many were aware of the course and its career prospects. Hence this attempt is to show young aspirants that this Course for Event Management will help them get some practical experience and also to highlight the core mantra that there is no substitute for hard work. The world is becoming easy now and there are better institutes with good facilities and exposure. One of the institutes is Wizcraft MIME and they offer world class facilities in India. He wants young aspirants to understand the real world of Event management and not get disillusioned with the glitz and glamour of this world. This is a demanding job and involves one to be on the Run always. Learning and Evolving is a key attribute of Event management. Excellence is always noticed and aptly rewarded as well. 

“I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.” - Maya Angelou 

Simply put, over time you will learn more things and inevitably start doing a better job. So, don’t fret if your first event had a million little things go wrong, it gets better! It’s a learning process, so keep at it. The only way to attract more customers each year is to establish a reputation for excellence. Never rest on your laurels – always seek to be the best. 

Dev clearly remembers that during the Indian Idol Auditions, he was facing a dearth of volunteers and he knew it well that in the month of May, Colleges will be having exams and he approached his school. He had the good fortune of meeting the same Accounts teacher who procrastinated the handing over of Dev’s hall ticket. Years had passed by and Dev wasn’t the same Dev that he used to be. Dev introduced himself to her and it didn’t take an eye blink for her to recollect Dev. Dev pointed to her politely that Years ago, he had a dream and was following his passion. Somehow, she felt that Studies alone could have made him to a successful person. But today, Dev has redefined success and ensured that he carves a ROADMAP to those youngsters who have a dream but have been asked to quash their dreams and look at the opposite direction. Yes, the Young mind will have loads of dreams and that could possibly lead into confusion. But then it’s the same confusion that causes ripples in a stagnant water and keeps the water alive. This confusion causes restlessness and keeps asking questions. And these same questions will be the answer to the so-called definition of Success. Success is not defined or attained by clarity, it’s the seed of confusion that causes restlessness amongst many and that’s where we have had the inventions from an Electric Bulb to a Drone today. He strongly believes that Cribbing, Grumbling is not a solution to any problem. However, Questioning and rationalizing is the only definite way to success and live successfully. 

“A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer.” – Bruce Lee

A dreamer is one who can find his way only by moonlight and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world. It’s not a crime to be different, We might have a name cos that’s an identity bestowed on us by our parents, but what we do to make that identity into a personality is all that matters. Dev strongly believes in working really hard and making a mark for himself that one day, his signature will quietly turn into an Autograph.

Here’s Wishing Dev a Bright future and all the very best in all his future endeavors. 

You can follow Dev's social media handles and his website using the following details:

Personal Profile

Business Profile:

Toshan Creations Website:

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Interviewed By Sonu Singh
Written  By Soumyashree Bangera
Idea Reference: YouTube - TEDx and Personal Experiences