My Teachers Whom I Will Always Remember

[Guru Ashtakam by Adi Shankaracharya]

My Parents: Parents are the first teachers of almost every child; but my case is special. My father was my teacher who taught me the three Rs and gave me a solid educational foundation. He taught me Sanskrit. My mother taught me how to become a compassionate man. I developed a sense of Hindi poetry from my mother. My intellectual build may be credited to my father and the emotional build to my mother.

Shri Gangadhar Jha: Shri Gangadhar Jha was my teacher for about two years while I was a student in Tarar High School, Tarar (Bhagalpur, Bihar). He taught me 'Everyday Science' and English. Everyday science incorporated elementary physics, chemistry, biology, earth sciences, etc. and was meant for students of Arts. Shri Jha was a very effective and affectionate teacher. He inculcated in me a lot of inquisitiveness in chemistry, which persisted in me lifelong.

Shri Rudra Pratap Singh: Shri Rudra Pratap Singh was the Head Master of Tarar High School. He had an MA in Maths. He used to teach only occasionally. He taught me English poetry. Occasionally, he used to teach geography and excellently. He was a man of vision and discipline. If Tarar High School was well maintained and prosperous, he should be credited for that. He also had a lot of love for games and sports; he used to participate in football playing. Shri Singh remained endearing to me throughout my student career - while I was in the school as well as while I was in college/University. He gave me financial help to acquire many books during my studies in college/university. I would always remember him with regards and love.

Shri Biranchi Yadav: Shri Biranchi Yadav will always be remembered by his students for his cool, calm, affectionate and helping nature. He was an avid historian. He taught me history while I was at Tarar High School. Initially, I had no love for history. But, Shri Yadav inculcated in me love for history, especially the history of ancient India. He was an excellent teacher of English as well. He found out an ingenious method to teach english to his students and wrote very effective books to that end. His books were best-sellers among the students.

Prof. Amal K. Bose: Prof. Amal K. Bose was the Vice Principal in Marwari College, Bhagalpur. He was a teacher of commerce and therefore did not take any class to teach me. Yet, he showed so much affection to me that I cannot forget. I remember, while returning back from the college (Marwari college, Bhagalpur), he came across me many a time. I used to return back on foot and he on a cycle rickshaw. In summer afternoons, the sun was scorching. Whenever he saw me on the road, he was kind to give me a lift (on his rickshaw) and take me to his residence, which was very close to Bhagalpur railway station (I was a commuter between my home at Tarar and the college at Bhagalpur). With a parental love, he used to offer me a glass of cold water and something to eat. That love - that compassion - is unforgettable. His love to me was like a glass of cold water or a gust of cool wind in the excoriating, scorching afternoons of the summer days.

Prof. Bhava Nath Jha: He was my teacher of deductive logic at Marwari college. I picked up deductive logic very fast, mainly due to Shri Jha. He was happy to see me resolving the problems of syllogism with only seven rules (instead of 10 rules) discussed in Ganga Dutta Jha's book on Deductive Logic. He was kind to invite me to the blackboard (in the classes where I was a student) and demonstrate proving, testing and construction of problems in deductive logic. These experiences promoted in me a desire to become a teacher.

Prof. Naresh Mohan Jha: He was my teacher of inductive logic and Indian Philosophy at Marwari college. Having received a good training in Sanskrit, I was quite at ease with Nyaya and Vaisheshika, which I could go through in original. Observing this, Shri NM Jha expected me to opt for Philosophy Honours and labored on me for that. Later, I opted for Economics Honours at which he was happy as well as sad; happy because economics was considered better for my personal career and sad because he lost a student to whom he could teach philosophy whole-heartedly. He retold me the story of 'The Postmaster' written by Tagore, which meant a lot. Shri Jha is unforgettable. It is his training that kept me interested in philosophy life-long and grasp economic theory comfortably.

Prof. Lalit K. Sharan: He was my teacher of statistics at Marwari college. Statistics was one of the papers in my BA (Economics Hons course). Under Shri Sharan's guidance I learned about random numbers, probability distributions, measures of central tendency and dispersion, correlation, linear regression, etc. At that time I did not know that in future those things would remain with me lifelong. Professor Sharan often used to talk about IIT, Kharagpur and Prof. AK Gayen (who was his PhD supervisor). At that time I did not know that in future IIT, Kharagpur will be the institution to shape my career.

Professor Kameshwar Jha: There have been two chief architects of my academic make: (i) my father, who designed and built my intellectual infrastructure, and (ii) Prof. Kameshwar Jha, who designed and built my academic structure in mathematical economics, econometrics and economic theory as well as history of economic thought. Professor Jha laboured hard to make me - for five years (1969-1973) at a stretch, while I was doing my BA (Hons) and MA in economics. None would believe that a student could sit with a teacher for hours and hours (sometimes 5-6 hours), almost daily, for five years, and discuss various aspects of economics. So much devotion, so much interest, so much involvement, so much and so deep knowledge, so much dedication to academics, so much information flowing untiringly to quench the thirst of an ordinary student (not belonging to his college even) - only Prof. Kameshwar Jha could have that. By the way, I should add that Prof. Kameshwar Jha taught in TNB college while I was doing my BA (in Marwari college). So much self-less devotion (I was not paying anything to Prof. K. Jha, except my respects and attentiveness to his teachings) is the rarest of rare.

k-jha (133K) prof.k.jha (360K)
Professor Narmedeshwar Jha: Prof. N. Jha taught me for two years while I was doing my MA (economics) during 1970-72 at the Department of Economics, Bhagalpur University, Bhagalpur, Bihar. Prof. Jha was an excellent teacher with mastery on economic thought. However, he taught us the economics of development based on the book of WA Lewis (The Economics of Growth). What he taught in 'The Will to Economize" and "Institutions and Economic Growth" converted me to an institutionalist forever. Later Prof. Jha also helped me in my admission to IIT, Kharagpur and obtaining scholarship there. My memoirs of Prof. Jha is here.

n-jha (7K)