A re-union after 40 years!

A re-union after 40 years!

Enjoying their retired life, majority of them wanted to go down the memory lane and recall those golden moments spent in the PG centre of Mysore University functioning at a rented building in Mangalore.

Reunions are a platform for refreshing those memories to share and memorise.
Out of the 41 students of the 1971-73 batch of Kannada post graduation students, a large number of them had turned out for the reunion programme, held at Mangalore University campus on Friday.

Most of the students from rural background, now hold respectable positions in the society. Out of the 41 students, one student A Mohan Rao, who had served as Chief General Manager of Corporation Bank has passed away. Few of them had served in banking sector, education sector, employment exchange and so on.

Speaking on the occasion, Visiting professor of University of Würzburg Dr B A Viveka Rai said that the PG course in Kannada was started in 1968. He was one of the students in the batch. The classes were held in one classroom at St Aloysius College.

As not many colleges were offering Kannada optional as one subject in degree, all those who had studied Kannada as a second language, could get into PG in Kannada. As it was a PG Centre, students from all over the state were in Mangalore to puruse their studies.

“In 1970, I joined the PG centre as a temporary teacher. I was getting a salary of Rs 342. After my post was regularised in 1971, I started getting the salary of Rs 442. As St Aloysius College could not accommodate the PG centre, the PG course in Kannada was functioning in a rented building at Karangalpady. I was teaching nine to 10 topics in a year.”

“We had met almost all the litterateurs of Kannada while pursuing PG and as a lecturer at the PG Centre. As the students were creative, we had to read thoroughly before entering the classrooms,” he recalled.

He said the PG centre was shifted to Konaje in November 1972. There was no direct road from Thokkottu to Konaje.  “One had to take the route via Beeri to reach Konaje. There was no canteen in Konaje. The entire area was like a barren land without any trees.

The building was leaking during monsoon. The teachers and students had a tough time amidst the leaking classroom. It was Prof S V Prameshwar Bhat who was my teacher as well as my collegue, who had taught me the art of living together like family. In fact, we had even organised yakshagana at Town Hall,” Viveka Rai recalled.

Kannada University (Hampi) former vice-chancellor Prof Lakkappa Gowda who was in the PG Centre for five years in Mangalore said, “I was awestruck at the greenery, sea and the interest in yakshagana among the people of Mangalore after I landed in Mangalore from Mysore.

The soil of the land had helped me to grow creatively. The students were serious in their studies. It was the students who helped us (teachers) to grow academically.”

“We could reach great heights in our careers due to the teaching by professors. The reunion was a result of an intensive search for the rest of the members by a group of old students,” said one of the students Chandrakala Nandavara. Recalling her classes, she said Dr Rai would never look at the female students while taking up the classes.

Stating that her nick name in her autograph was ‘Prarthane Devi,’ she said that though many of them were not speaking to boys in the class, it was Rajakumari who would speak to all the classmates.

One of the students M Janaki Brahmavar’s work ‘Kudurada Kedage’ is part of the syllabus of MA Kannada of Mangalore University.

Karnataka Sangha (Mandya) President Prof B Jayaprakash Gowda, who was one of the students of the batch said: “I had not met many of my classmates after 1973.

In fact, I had forgotten many of the faces. I could meet few of my friends through my literary activities. Prof S V Parameshwar Bhat would start his lecture through stories. Prof Chandrashekar Aithal’s class was humourous. Dr Lakkappa Gowda was very serious in the class. However, we had a homely atmosphere.”

Few of the members brought their family members along with them for the reunion. In fact, Dr Kanaradi Vadiraj Bhatt had brought out a small book on students of the batch. Mangalore University Registrar Dr K Chinnappa Gowda presided over the programme.

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