Saturday, 11 November 2017

At the Dhanpatmal Virmani Education Trust and Management Society Centenary Celebrations

It was an honour to be invited to the centenary celebrations of the Dhanpatmal Virmani Education Trust and Management Society today. The first school run by the Dhanpatmal Virmani Education Trust and Managment Society was established in Lyallpur, Pakistan a hundred years ago. Ever since the Trust has been offering quality education to the underprivileged. The chairman of the Trust, Mr Anil Virmani is a philanthropist and an educationist with a vision that far surpasses expected possibilities. I served the trust for seventeen years which happen to be the most important formative years for me.

The function started with a narration of the history of the school. The partition affected the family adversely. The members of the Dhanpatmal Virmani Family were forced to leave everything behind in Pakistan. Yet, the elders decided to open a new school in Roop Nagar, Delhi at first in a rented accommodation.

Staff members of the Virmani Public school were felicitated for their service by the trust as were the staff members of the Dhanpatmal Virmani Sr. Sec school.

It was a great joy to see the retired staff members with whom I had once worked. Among those present was Mr  G.L. Naswa, the first principal under whom I had worked, Mr  R.B.Aggarwal the first Vice Principal under whom I had worked, Mr  A.R. Ahuja, and Mr Tayal, who had retired before I joined the school in 1994.

It was an emotional moment also to see a group of students of the 1984 batch acknowledge the contribution of their teachers all those years ago because of which they have reached their present status as accomplished professionals.

It was indeed a high energy moment for Mr.Amitav Virmani and Mr Anil Virmani, the Nephew and Uncle combo of the Trust, as you can see from the above snap!

Mr Vinod Dua, eminent media person and alumni of the Dhanpatmal Virmani School was the chief guest on the occasion shared his anecdotes as a student of the school. He spoke at length about the need to go beyond the textbook and what is limited to the curriculum. He talked about developing skills that go beyond the textbook, skills that help equip the learner for life as a professional He talked about the need for crossing the class barrier and to acknowledge one's Indianness. He talked about his memories of life as a small child in Dera Ismail Khan, in Pakistan and his struggles as a child in India after the partition.

The students presented a scintillating cultural programme for all those who were present on the occasion.  

It was an honour to see Mrs Asha Kishore, Vice President of the trust whom I was closely associated with as the editor of the Dateline E-Newsletter. She read out the vote of thanks.

Last but not least, lest you should think I covered the whole function by proxy, I would like to thank Mr S.R.Sharma for acknowledging my presence at the function with this lovely snap!

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