Teachers hold a very special place, akin to God, in the Indian dharmic system. The respect a teacher commands cannot be described in words.
And when a teacher retires, it is the students, both past and present, who give an emotional but best send-off.
So when experimental physicist Professor Harish Chandra Verma decided to hang his boots, the emotional messages he received only reaffirmed that a teacher is honored by all.
Verma had been teaching at Indian Institute of Technology at Kanpur (IIT-K) since 1994 posted this emotional message on both Facebook and Twitter:
Finally locked my IITK lab and submitted the keys to Office. End of 38 years of formal teaching and research.
— H C Verma (@HCVermaIITK) July 1, 2017
The 65-year-old Darbhanga-born professor had started teaching at his alma mater, Patna Science College, in 1980. It was at the Patna Science College where he realized that students were facing difficulty in understanding Physics because of the language of the textbook they were following at the time.
Both inspired and concerned about the future of the students, Verma wrote ‘Concepts of Physics’ – a textbook for the students of Standard XI and XII which is still hailed as the best for those preparing for IIT-JEE preparations.
The book is famous for the numericals and every student in the two divisions regard it as the Bible of Physics.
No wonder then that his students and many of those who studied his book left touching messages for him on social media:
You will be remembered and missed by many.
Physics could not be explained better than the way you taught.
— A Satish Ganesh (@SatishBharadwaj) July 1, 2017
Thank you for your contributions.
— Shahid. Mohammed (@shahidm) July 1, 2017
अगर IIT कि परीक्षा महाभारत है तो आपका concept ऑफ़ physics गीता !
— शौर्यान्वित पात्रा (@Katu__Vachan) July 1, 2017
Congrats Sir on huge impact you’ve had on millions of aspiring physicists , engineers and scientists !
— Bipin Preet Singh (@BipinSingh) July 1, 2017
It was an honour learning from your books and then being taught by you. Thanks for the many hours of interesting physics classes at IITK 🙂
— निर्भीक चौहान (@nirbheek) July 1, 2017
Sir, lab लॉक कर दिए हैं लेकिन हमारे दिलों में हमेशा रहेंगे, Physics के concepts सिखाने के लिए धन्यवाद
— विवेक सिंह (@viveksingh1512) July 1, 2017
I am a doctor, never took maths stream, but still used your book to solve physics. Cracked 4 national exams, all thanks to your book.
— 傻医生 (@RightWingDoctor) July 1, 2017
And there were many like these who requested him to continue educating India’s children through new ways:
Truly, a great teacher earns more than anyone else.