Sindh Agriculture University on Wednesday organized a memorial reference for the former SAU VC Dr Rajab Memon, in which professors, Memon’s colleagues and friends and his students participated and shared their memories on the occasion.

Dr Rajab was born in Daro town on April 5, 1944 and died on 25th July 2021. The event attracted a large number of students, teachers, researchers, retired professors and family members to pay homage to Dr Rajab, whose appreciative and motivated approach had always inspired a number of students and teachers at all levels. They recalled the moments they spent with Dr Memon, saying they cannot forget his guidance with a smiling face, which motivated them to achieve tasks.

Besides academic side like teaching, Dr Rajab contributed a lot to the research studies on coastal agriculture, Indus delta, water and drainage schemes, soil fertility, food security, underground and surface water status in Sindh province, which the speakers suggested a new cadre of researchers to use the same as references.

SAU VC Dr Fata Marri said “I remained a direct student of Dr Rajab Memon when he was a teacher and learned from him”.

“What I am today is because of Dr Rajab’s guidance to learn economy, research methodology, agriculture and environment,” he said.

“I stayed with Dr Rajab Memon at Kirchat guest house in the remote mountainous area of National Khirthar Park for 10 nights to accomplish the task,” he recalled.

Marri said Dr Rajab was quite committed and dedicated teacher and researcher and produced studies sponsored by World Bank, Asian Development Bank and many other leading institutions, which are still useful.

Dr A Q Ansari, founding vice chancellor of SAU said how they formed a team comprising dedicated teachers to conduct meetings with parents in different districts of Sindh province to increase enrollment, required for the running university.

He further said in this move Dr Rajab Memon played an active role as researcher and teacher and made untiringly efforts to motivate students and building infrastructure.

He said this missionary spirit is missing in the educational institutes as well as in the whole society.

He said we should develop parameters as per need of moment like set by Dr Rajab to promote research and education.

Prof Mujeeb Memon Sehrai, former SAU VC and now vice chancellor at Sindh Madrassatul Islam University (SMIU) said he also worked with Dr Rajab in some studies and traveled to different fields for the purpose.

He said now it seems the status of research has been diminished and teachers and students seem unproductive in terms of new findings and learnings. He urged the teachers to follow the studies and principles set by Dr Rajab for future generations as well as benefit the mother land of Sindh province.

Prof Dr Muhammad Ismail Kumbhar, recalling the past difficult days of the university, said Dr Rajab put the university out of financial crisis by fund raising programmes and run the university affairs smoothly. Dr Memon had introduced different progrmmes for revenue generation, he said.

Dr Kumbhar gave credit to Memon for his personal professional development and achievements. Dr Rajab introduced agriculture teaching methods, which helped the teachers and students.

He said Dr Rajab being belonging to rural areas knew the rural poverty, visible threats to food security, depletion of natural resources and faulty projects.

Dr Aijaz Khonharo, dean faculty of social sciences in his welcome address said he has been associated with Dr Rajab as a lecturer and as well as worked for different research studies. Dr Memon was honest and dedicated to work. He inspired many juniors. His research work still guides the new cadre. He had a grip on modern history.

Former vice chancellors Prof Bashir Shaikh said Dr Rajab Memon was my best a friend and we stayed together during higher education in the USA. He said he was creative soul and later became lead researcher in Sindh.

Dr Imran Memon, the son of Dr Rajab Memon said his father was a multidimensional person. He has been associated with political parties and contributed little in the creative literature.

He said his siblings also learned from his father, who took care of them at all stages. That is why they have achieved goals in life.

Dr Parween Munshi, VC Sufi University Bhit Shah, also shared the memories she spent with Dr Rajab during her PhD and found him very cooperative and encouraging.

Prof (retd) Suresh Kumar Wadhwani said the approach of Dr Rajab could have been measured from the facts that he never victimized anybody throughout his tenure in teaching, guide and after retirement. He always encouraged the subordinate to move ahead on their own and show their talent.

Later, all the guests participated in the formal inauguration of the library in the memory of Dr Rajab Memon at the Social Sciences Department at SAU, where Dr Rajab has already donated some books during his life.

Dr Zaheer Meerani, Prof Ali Nawaz Leghari, Prof Muhammad Saffar Mirjat, Dr Gul Hassan Leghari, Dr Junaid Memon and Dr Hemandas, Faqeer Muhammad Dhole, university employees’ union leader also spoke on the occasion.

Author

Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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