A teacher with multiple roles

The KG The classroom at Boys Middle School Waripora Payeen in Baramulla buzzes with activity when Riyaz Ahmad – a teacher – is in the classroom.

Riyaz is not only a teacher but also a writer. Belonging to the village of Waripora which once had a zero literacy rate, he was the first from his village to enroll, graduate and subsequently get a job in a government service in 2010.

His parents, with all possible resources, sent him out of the village to continue his studies. “With almighty grace, my parents sent me to Kreeri and I was associated with those village people who were very knowledgeable and I was influenced by them,” he said.

He continued his secondary education at Kreeri High School and did mass communication at Government Degree College Baramulla. Then he did a post-graduation in political science and having a huge inclination for the Urdu language, he pursued another post-graduation in the subject. Currently, he is pursuing his post-doctorate.

Riyaz is proud to be a teacher and to have an important role to play in the village. “It’s very easy to be a teacher, but you have to fulfill the duties and responsibilities that come with it. It’s not just a craft but an art,” he said.

The 33-year-old teacher said he was determined to move on. “I decided that I had to study and do something for my family and my village so that others could also go out and do better,” he said.

With the limited source of income at home and less pocket money, he often walked for school fees to distant places to obtain formal and religious education.

To support himself, he bound books. When that wasn’t enough, he ran a school canteen.

He said: “There was a time when my family suggested to me that I had studied a lot and that I should stop studying more, but I disagreed. Then with the paintings and the art that I inherited, I started making signs and banners. I earned a good salary and continued my studies with this money.

Besides painting and calligraphy, his great interest lies in poetry. With the pseudonym Riyaz Rabbani, he writes poetry based on the situation, society and hymns. As a columnist, he also writes something that can benefit society. He said his poetry book is also expected to hit the markets soon.

Inspired by the living conditions and his passion push him into poetry since childhood. He writes poetry in several languages ​​- Kashmiri, Urdu, Hindi and English. He believes that by making poetry in different languages, his words can reach people belonging to different tastes.

“The Kashmiri language should not be left behind, but the Kashmiri language is only for the Kashmiri people. Due to globalization and social media, there is a need to cater to all kinds of audiences, so it is important to do poetry in other languages ​​as well,” he said.

Having a creative temperament since childhood, he participated in various children’s programs at Radio Kashmir.

“Balbir Singh Mehta helped and guided me in Radio Kashmir. I did several shows there. I also passed auditions and did famous programs like “Yuva Vani” and “Tuhunz Pasand” for three years “, did he declare.

In 2014 he also appeared as a new reader and after the floods his journey ended in radio.

He said his village has an 80% literacy rate today. “The same village has a number of matriculations and graduates today. People from the same village get jobs and have a bright future. Many of my students are better at calligraphy and that makes me proud,” he said.

Riyaz teaches Hindi, Arabic and Computer Science to students up to level 8 and generally incorporates modern trends and techniques to teach his students.

Citing the examples of various poets, he said that famous poets mentioned that the teacher should be a guide. “He should know everything. He should see a student’s background and help him improve. The more effort we can put into shaping the generation, the better they can make our nation,” he said.

Talking about prominent poets, he said the way Iqbal and Galib served the people through their poetry, he too wants to serve the people.

“Life is about learning. It is important for everyone to learn. A poet is the third eye of society and must be transparent and honest. When he writes, he should build society rather than destroy it,” he said.

During the pandemic, he served society with his social work.

“During confinement, when people were suffering. I was thinking of donating the money I had saved for the construction of my house. But my grandson had also saved some money in his piggy bank, and my wife also helped people. The next morning I woke up and bought some of the essentials. I packed them up and handed them out to people,” he said.

He tried to get in touch with NGOs and people, but no one showed up. Then, many like-minded people came forward and 400 people in 21 villages received essential items. Many orphans have been supported and destitute young girls have been married off.

He said: “When someone does a good job, they get criticized at the same time, but we must never stop doing what we are supposed to do. It is our duty to come forward to support people.

A forum opened by him named – Hum Sukhan Cultural and Welfare Organization which was initially for young writers but later expanded for the welfare of the people.

“I thought that poets and literary people should not just limit themselves to poetry, but should go out into the world of humans and support them. Here we help people from our personal salaries,” he said. declared.

Giving huge credit to his teachers for his success, he said, “My teachers played a vital role in my building. When everyone rejected me, my teachers built me ​​up and taught me the difference between good and evil.

He concluded by quoting, “If we salute our duty, people will salute us and if we pollute our duty, people will pollute us,” he said.

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