Thousands of alumni of Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM) gathered at Keraton (Palace) Yogyakarta, on Sunday (15/12), wearing traditional costumes. One of them is Ganjar Pranowo, Chairman of the alumni association, Kagama.
Ganjar said he was happy to take part in the Nitilaku parade to mark the history when academic community of UGM moved from the place in Kraton to the current location in Bulaksumur. Ganjar said the parade was not just for remembering the good deeds by the Keraton that had developed UGM during the initial establishment of UGM but also a place to get together for the alumni from across Indonesia and abroad.
Wearing traditional costumes, according to Ganjar, was to remind the alumni to always sustain the culture. “This culture is the value we stick to, this can also be used to establish social and political relations. Through culture, the interaction will feel more comfortable,” he said.
Although the parade is conducted annually, Ganjar said, there is a new thing in each. This year various new communities participate in it. “There are creese community, dance community, and so on. We will all miss this atmosphere,” he said.
Rector of UGM, Prof. Ir. Panut Mulyono, M.Eng., D.Eng., IPU., ASEAN Eng., appreciated all alumni that came to join the event to remember the good deeds of the Kraton in the development of UGM. “This reminds us that UGM had started from Kraton,” he said.
The Rector asked the alumni to continue giving contributions to the state. “The alumni in their respective positions can give contributions to the state,” he said.
The Nitilaku parade to mark the 70th anniversary of UGM involves thousands of participants who were wearing traditional costumes and make cultural performances. They marched from the north square of Kraton to the Bulaksumur campus through Malioboro, Tugu and Jetis. Along the tracks they can sample free snacks and drinks.