Most children studying at the Government High School in Velliagaram in the Tiruvallur district of Tamilnadu are happy to see their language teacher Bhagawan return to their school. Authorities have revoked the transfer order after a video showing children crying and pleading their teacher to not leave went viral.
V Sanghavi, a class nine student who's father is a roadside vendor, says nothing can bring her more happiness. She says "Bhagawan sir would teach any lesson in a super way. He would chat with us telling about his home stories. He would use projector to show us many things."
She adds, "We love Bhagawan sir very much. It's because of Bhagawan sir class ten students secured high marks. All teachers teach well but Bhagawan sir takes little more interest."
Her friend Monisha, a class seven student, whose mother is a daily wage labourer says, "Bhagawan sir teaches in a very interesting way. I want to become a collector. Many of our parents have said they would take us out of the school if Bhagawan sir is shifted from here."
Bhagwan, who himself belongs to a humble background, is from nearby Thiruttani. He did went government schools and colleges and has a graduation degree in English.
Bhagwan has been at the school for last four years and teaches English and Tamil. Many students say he kindled their curiosity and made classes interesting with his innovative teaching and motivated them to aim high.
Overwhelmed by the love from students, Bhagawan says, "I treated them like a friend, mingled with them. They can approach me anytime even after school hours. This bonding became a success. But I have to obey government order when it comes to transfer ".
The school's strength dropped to 264 from 281 this year as many parents prefer private nearby English medium schools. This was the main reason why two teachers from the school including Bhagawan were transferred.
Head Master of the school A Arvindh says that in the last two years they have launched many initiatives like coaching for spoken English and competitive exams, study tours and evening special classes with dinner ahead of public exams with contribution from teachers.
On Bhagwan, he says, "This shows we have good and committed teachers in government schools as well."
The 38-year-old school requires furniture to seat 200 children. Students in lower classes sit on the floor. They want a smart classroom to expose children to easy to understand modern learning materials besides ten computers and a WiFi connection. A part of the school doesn't have a compound wall.
A member of the Parent-Teacher Association says, "Our kids are brilliant. A slight push and little more facilities found in private schools in cities will take them places."