‘My dear students’…Murli Sir started every class with these words. He didn’t just say them but he strove to stay true to these words. His students were dear to him and he would go to any extent to help them.
We may forget the subjects our professors taught us and we may even forget their words of wisdom but we will never forget how they made us feel. Murli Sir made each one of us feel special and important. Even if someone disturbed his class he would politely say “Please keep quiet dear, I will finish teaching in ten minutes, and you can talk after that”.
Most college students yearn to be recognised as individuals capable of independent thinking and not be treated as school-children. Murli Sir was one of those rare professors who respected us as individuals and listened to our opinions and views without being dismissive. He always listened to us no matter how trivial our problems were. Looking back I realise that he treated us like we were his equals! I only wish that I can live up to being his equal.
While waiting outside his house on the day of his funeral there was a moment when most of us felt that he would walk out of the door hurriedly and tell us “Go home now and prepare well for the test. You will definitely do well.”
With conviction I can say that he was the noblest man I know. If you asked him to explain the same concept 99 times, he would explain it 100 times with the same patience. I have never seen him humiliate a student either with his words or with his behaviour. Further, I have never seen him getting angry with a student. His stable temper along with his comforting demeanour encouraged us to work honestly and sincerely. We would always pray for Murli Sir to be the examiner for our practical exams because his mere presence would give us the confidence to complete an experiment successfully.
I hadn’t realised the impact he had made in my life until I saw his calm reassuring face for the last time. I feel honoured to be writing about one of the greatest human beings I have come across and I am glad that he was and is a part of my life.
“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” said Plato but Murli Sir practiced it.
This is a tribute Dr. Muralikrishnan who was my physics lecturer during the first 2 years of under-graduation. He passed away suddenly in 2014. The sheer number of students who turned up to offer their condolences speaks volumes about the impact he had on them.