Bar Dive
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Bar Stewards, Dive Old & Mild No.1 Officers For The Year 2018 - 19
Comrade T.M.Krishna Dev MHL
Comrade K.C.Zachariah Senior Barman
Comrade Mathew Varghese Junior Barman
Comrade R.Suraj Senior Bottle Opener
Comrade Joseph Zacharias Junior Bottle Opener
Comrade Viji Joseph Senior Chucker Out
Comrade Raghu Jairam Junior Chucker Out
Comrade G.Unnikrishnan Steward
Comrade M.Hanifa Steward
Comrade P.Shankar Menon Treasurer
Comrade Sunil Koliyot Bar Writer

At the two meetings of the District Grand Lodge, every year since it was constituted (if that’s the right word) in 1944, the Prehistoric Order of ancient free-and-easy Old Bar Stewards, of which the Dive Old and Mild is No.1, has held its gatherings, on the previous (Friday) evening to the DGL Meetings.

The Dive, for short, was the idea of the first Indian District Grand Master, R.W.Bro.T.V. Muthukrishna Iyer (Muthanna, as he was referred to by the then Brethren) primarily to aid the inter-mingling of European and Indian Brethren, in a convivial setting. Originally not more than forty-five or so Brethren were admitted, after personal vetting by none other than Muthanna himself. History does not record (Bar Dive records would not be quite credible, anyway!) who, or which Englishman crafted the Ritual of the Dive which is whimsically brilliant. The prime object was Charity, and towards the end of the Meeting a charity charge which is reproduced below is given by the Treasurer or some one with a stentorian voice to be heard above the abnormal din of a Dive Meeting. On an average night of the Dive, a sum of Rupees Twenty Thousand is collected, which is then donated to the District Charity.

Here’s the Charity charge

Comrades, as was hinted in the opening ceremony and was fully proved in the presentation of the Treasurer’s statement, our fun is not all foolery. From time immemorial it has been the custom among Bar-Stewards and their co-workers the World over, to retire after closing time to some secluded den or “glory-hole” of their own, there to relax and enjoy themselves for a while before going home to their well-earned repose. Joking and friendly banter are then the order of the evening, stories are swapped, and legs are pulled. Wit darts its shaft against the buckler of Humour. Laughter rings out freely, and a good time is enjoyed by all. But in the midst of this mirth, a thought is spared for those less happily situated; for the Comrades in distress, for the widow, the orphan, the sick and the crippled, for the man who once was a jolly comrade like themselves. On such occasions an appeal is made, and meets with generous response.

A somewhat similar appeal is about to be made to you.

Any Master Mason who has been in regular attendance at his Lodge, and is of a minimum of five years membership of the fraternity of the English Constitution may apply. All candidatures must have the prior approval of the R.W.D.G.M. Prospective candidates first attend a Dive Meeting as guests called sympathisers before being accepted as victims as candidates for membership are appropriately described.

To the best of our knowledge the Bar Dive is the only one of its kind in the Masonic World, although it has been reported that one exists in the U.K. (the order of the CORK?).

The Office-bearers are appropriately named to the bibulous tasks in hand.

W.M. The Most Hospitable Land Lord (MHL)
S.W. Senior Bar Man
J.W. Junior Bar Man
Secretary  Bar Writer
Treasurer  Treasurer
Deacons  Senior & Junior Bottle Openers
I.G. Chucker Out

The Dive is now entering its sixtieth year of enervating frivolity ending each meeting in the salutary business of giving – it is safe to estimate that the Dive has collected and disbursed more than Rs.2.5 Million of current value over the period of its existence.