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Never bid adieu to a teacher

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The last week was apathetically and calmly marked by “Happy Teachers’ Day Greetings” and related messages and posts on social media and phones and, subsequently, sank into the sea of mundane and downtrodden routine-life of the teachers. However, in my close circle, it, pleasingly, coincided with the farewell ceremony of the renowned educationist, economist, analyst and TV anchor Professor Dr. Shujaat Mubarik who has served Mohammad Ali Jinnah University, Karachi, for last twelve years. After successfully and admirably discharging his duties as a Teacher, the HOD, and, then, as the Dean Faculty of Business Administration and Management Sciences, there, he recently joined Institute of Business and Management as the Dean of the CBM.
Expressing his exquisite views, the honourable President of the Mohammad Ali Jinnah University Professor Dr. Zubair Ahmed Sheikh, a well-known and learned educationist and computer scientist finished by Polytechnic University, New York, United States, said that he did not think a teacher could be seen of by saying goodbye to him or arranging farewell in his honour because there was no such expression, situation or status in his life and, for a teacher, the term “Farewell” means only the last sigh or the moment of departure to the other world. A teacher is always available for guidance to his fraternity, students and society without any thought of his professional or personal affiliation to any specific organisation or sphere. I vehemently agree with the honourable President and would love to add that a pedagogic figure never says farewell to his profession, passion and spirit even after touching the age of bond-maturity or getting hoary, feeble and senile while Dr. Mubarak is just a zealous youngman who is shifting from one institution to the other with the soaring dreams and ambitions to serve the society.
Historically speaking, a teacher is, decidedly, an architect and inventor of the promising and progressive philosophies, ideologies and doctrines that sail a nation or society towards the right and straight direction during tempestuous tides of the socio-educational depravity in the ocean of life. Even after his physical death, a teacher’s teachings, epigrams, ideologies and, above all, lessons remain alive in the hearts and minds of the pupils and the society around them. His sagacity, knowledge, researches and teachings are transferred to the succeeding generations through a natural process and both directly and indirectly play a pivotal role in the progressive evolution of the societies and even civilisations. If you have a cursory glance at the calibre of the teachers in a society, you will easily be able to foresee the future of it along with its expected justices, lawyers, soldiers, bureaucrats, scientists, politicians, economists, businessmen and other significant positions and office holders. A teacher is, beyond any cavil, an incarnation of a legacy, a set of principles for life and an everlasting guiding spirit for not only his associated society, but for the whole universe.
Honorably speaking, we have always been hearing and relating to our generations that it is Generals and Justices who are never considered retired because of their “extraordinary services”; even if we set aside everything else and see their post-retirement privileges, social status and perks only, we are reality-bound to acknowledge this fact that they are rightfully regarded as never retired. On the other hand, even an oblique and brief look on the serving as well as retired teachers’ socio-economic status will conveniently convince us of the fact that they are the least significant people in our society. It is highly ironic to observe that we, as a nation, society and state, always lay stress on the element of education and training as the pivotal strength for the development and growth of the society by talking about, pondering over and spending on policy making, syllabi and course designing, improving infrastructure and provision of the state-of-the-art facilities. For this, we have more than a dozen of ministries, divisions, departments, boards, institutions, directorates and commissions.
Unfortunately, we never have paid heed to the matter of welfare or even survival of the teachers who are the essential driving force behind this training and education campaign. Every other day, you will find news, notifications, advertisements and amendments in rules and regulations issued by these institutions including Higher Education Commission (HEC), but you will never come across any such document that addresses the job security, promotions and salary policies, basic rights and stress and conflict management issues of the teachers, especially those who are working in private institutions under a typical Seth (capitalistic) culture. If the society is deteriorating rapidly and reverting back to the barbarianism, do not irresponsibly blame any foreign powers for hatching conspiracy against our generations and youth. Just mend your ways, for God’s sake!