71-Yr-Old Teaches For Free Even After Stroke & Paralysis

It took just a moment for anyone to look at this man and know that he is happy. The satisfaction of serving the society through education showed in his face. Most people retire at 60 but for Subhash Chandra Kundu a new life began at 61 when a cerebral stroke left part of his body paralyzed.

Troubled past

In 2008, Subhash’s body took a severe blow from the stroke but his mind and will power only grew stronger. After completing his Msc in Physics, he found his calling in teaching and joined a school in Kolkata. After teaching there for around a decade his interest diverted toward active politics. He got associated with Naxal ideology but government's intervention landed him in trouble and he was arrested and sent to a correction center for four years.

After undergoing a transformation, Subhash decided to direct his energy toward serving a greater purpose rather than being part of armed mission. Not only did he rejoin teaching at the same school, he also started giving free tuition to the needy. 

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"I decided to pursue a mission not through the path of armed revolution but by spreading science education among the poor," he tells Telegraph India in an interview.

He had an insight

Subhash observed that most of his promising students did not have money to pay for their schooling, let alone afford a professional coaching. It was very difficult for him to let this go unnoticed so he resolved to take matters into his own hand. He didn’t have resources to support his dream but as they say where there is a will there is a way.

He took a small contribution from his parents to buy a small piece of land from his siblings.He created a shelter where he could teach a bunch of students together. It wasn’t easy, because he was not charging for his work. He even had to take several loans to sustain. All this struggle for whom, why? It was not for him but for the future he saw for his students. He was content with whatever he had. His students reflected his efforts by becoming professors at most prestigious Indian colleges like IITs, Xaviers and many more.

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“I always thought that my salary as a teacher was enough for my sustenance. Post my retirement, what I receive as pension remains more than adequate. Arrey, ghore lakh lakh taka pore aache (Come on, I have cash lying around at home)!" chuckles Subhash.

Over the next 30 years, he devoted all his time in transforming lives of hundreds of students. His teaching style was so powerful that he did not do any advertising. His students became his publicists and spread the words fetching him more pupils.

"When I was a teacher at Basirhat High School, I never took a paisa from my students for private tuition. I always thought that my salary as a teacher was enough for my sustenance. Post my retirement, what I receive as pension remains more than adequate. Arrey, ghore lakh lakh taka pore aache (Come on, I have cash lying around at home)!" says Subhash.

Destined for greatness 

Then his journey to greatness began. He made it his life’s purpose to educate students. He knew that money can only stop someone from getting into a college but it can never stop them from learning. Gradually more students came to know about him and joined his tuition classes. The shelter that no one bothered to look at became a landmark of that area

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After three decades now, the shelter has taken the form of a two storey building. It has six rooms including a library and a laboratory whose equipment are either purchased or received via donation over three decades. Both building and Subhash stand as glorious as they could be. He was also honored for his work by many awards. 

"The natural knack for science is on the wane, so I try to attract students to science in as many ways as possible," says Subhash.

His contributions have made many students from poor family background employable and gave them the power seek a respectable position in the society. His work is an example that one man can make a difference if he truly wishes to. The country needs more teachers like him who teach to make someone’s future not just money. He is currently 71. He might have become weaker by body but the teacher inside him is still as young as forever and his desire to teach will burn more bright with time.

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