Hyderabad: Students don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. This became evident the other day when Prof. Muzaffar Shah Miri, Vice-Chancellor, Abdul Haque University, Kurnool, was felicitated by his students. Those present were surprised to see the unique bond between the teacher and the taught, something difficult to find in this age.

The occasion was the release of four books of Prof. Shah Miri and three books of his students on his life and achievements. It was not a Teachers' Day and yet students poured out their love and affection to their guide, philosopher and mentor.

The book Hamare Aapke Muzaffar Shah Miri by Dr Amina Afreen said it all. It gives expression to the feelings of his large circle of students. Dr Naseem Begum, a student, paid rich tributes to the pedagogical skills of Prof Shah Miri and said he did not make any difference between students but treated everyone equally. He saw unlimited possibilities in his students and went on to hone their skills. She recited a couplet, to sum up, her feelings:

Jinke kirdar se aati ho sadaqat ki mahak

Unki tadrees se pathar bhi pighal sakte hain

Another student, Dr Ghousia Banu, described Prof Shah Miri as 'ustad-e-Azam'. "He would not compromise on quality and made his students write their doctoral thesis again and again. This was not to harass but to bring out the best in his pupil. Prof Shah Miri established a rapport with students which is beautiful, enriching and satisfying. He made average students good and the good ones superior," she explained.

For many students, who assembled at the Media Plus auditorium in Hyderabad, a teacher like Prof Shah Miri was hard to find, difficult to part with and impossible to forget. They recalled how he opened their minds and touched their hearts with his teaching methodology. An overwhelmed Prof Shah Miri didn't speak. But his broad smiles seemed to say it's the students who make the teacher and not the other way round.

J.S. Ifthekhar

J.S. Ifthekhar is a senior journalist with nearly four decades of experience. Ifthekhar cut his teeth in journalism at the Indian Express before he moved to The Hindu. He was also associated with the Siasat Daily, Telangana Today, Deccan Chronicle, Onlooker magazine, Newstrack, Detective Digest and a few news agencies. He has written on different subjects and aspects of Hyderabadi life. However, his passion remains literature in general and Urdu poetry in particular. He is equally concerned with culture, heritage, civic affairs and problems confronting the man in the street. As a journalist he has taken up cudgels on behalf of the underprivileged and many of his stories in The Hindu saw the government promptly taking corrective measures. Ifthekhar has authored two books - Hyderabad - The Nawabi City on The Move and Haj - The Spirit Behind it. He has also translated two books from Urdu to English. Currently he is working on his third book - Poets and Writers of Deccan. Loves to write and writes to live. Can't imagine doing anything else.

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