Author Interview | Dr. Shakeel Ahmad  Raina-  Counting Numbers, One At A Time

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Dr. Shakeel Ahmad  Raina is Principal GDC Thannamandi and one of the noted academician of the state. After spending close to 21 years researching and writing about the wonderful subject that mathematics is, Raina has now come out with a couple of books to share his immense knowledge with the common masses.

He got the much coveted government job rather early in his life. He was doing well in his life, earning name, fame and a handsome salary, among other things in his life. The road couldn’t be smoother for him but then he was not the one to get satiated with what was ‘sufficient’ for majority. Maybe this is one quality which makes a distinction between ‘ordinary’ and ‘extraordinary’. This is the story of Dr. Shakeel Ahmad Raina who is more famously known as one of the most celebrated researcher of Mathematics, than his professional designation of being the Principal of a Government Degree College.

Raina was born in a middle class family in Thannamandi of district Poonch in a progressive family that emphasised on education more than anything else. Raina considers this to be a great motivation for him, “Ever since my birth, what I saw while growing up made me inclined towards studies. We were a large joint family and almost everyone in the family had either done or was doing well in studies. My father, though was not much educated, always pushed us siblings towards education. It was his persistence which led me to the way of sincere and honest hard work and then it was my elder sister who continued inspiring me with her hard work and with whatever she achieved in life.”

As Raina was good in studies, it only made sense to pursue his academics journey till the very end and that was when he found his interest in Mathematics. After completing his Masters in Mathematics, he did his M. Phil and PhD in Mathematics only. But this was just the beginning of the illustrious journey for Raina as he wasn’t among the ones to satisfy or satiate with only this much. Soon after joining the education department, Raina accelerated the pace of his research and was soon a know name all over the state and country.

So when did he start writing? We asked him and he answered, “I had started writing since my school time only. At that time my subjects were altogether different as I used to write about the nature, the childhood and almost everything that caught my attention at that age. But the focus shifted after College and I started writing on more serious subjects mostly related to Mathematics. The first such writeup came a good 21 years ago when I was doing my M. Phil. from the University of Jammu. And the journey has continued ever since.”

And what a journey has it been for Raina! Till date, Raina has so far written close to 220 gems of his research which have been published in the form of articles, papers and even books. He has been a regular writer for some of the prestigious Research Publications as well as famous newspapers, local and national. We asked him about his writings and he enlightened us with his detailed answers.

“Majorly my writing can be published into three categories; one is pure research that is meant for other members of the Teachers fraternity like myself which is analysed and formulated into formal curricular at later stages. This has been and is still published in scores of National and International magazines. The second type of my work is more relatable to common masses as it is basically popular research on Mathematics and serves as an immediate implementation of some of the new concepts of the subjects. This is basically published in the form of articles in newspapers and magazines as well as implemented informally in what we study and teach as well coming out in the form of books. The third type of my writings is a little different from the previously mentioned subjects as it basically deals with the importance of Morality along with Education in life. I have been writing on these subjects in various means and have come out with a book on the same also,” he shares.

Coming to the books, this is the first time that Raina has tried to compile his work in the form of a book and that he came out with two books within his first year, speaks a lot for the store of Knowledge Raina is. His first book was ‘Power of Mathematics’ which was praised by all the sections of the readers who appreciated it for ‘the simple manner in which the book puts light on some of the most complex mathematics concepts’. Raina has followed the success of his first book with another book titled ‘Wings of Education and Morality’ which is based on his 76 articles on some educational and social issues published during last about two decades.

So why does a Mathematician has to write a book on Morality; we were curious and we asked Raina. “Morality is as much important or dare I say, even more important than the education in life. You can get good grades, score the highest in the examination and even get posted at a top rank in a prestigious institution but if you are not morally rich, all this would be of no use to anyone. We take so much from the world around, but what do we give it back? We have seen many topping examinations and getting top posts and then later resorting to corruption resulting in suffering for a common man. What kind of a person would that be? Only someone who is morally hollow. So for safeguarding the future of this country, it is equally important that alongside quality education, the students are filled with morals up to the brim,” he answers.

Raina has also contributed immensely to the Education department of the state and he has been given the opportunity to serve the society in various positions. Raina is currently posted as the Principal of Government Degree College Thannamandi and doing his bit to bring the students of this far flung area on par with those in developed regions of the state. He believes that students from these areas are not behind those in Jammu in any way and very soon, they will even excel in many respects, doing better than the others.

Raina doesn’t forget to thank his family once again as he particularly thanks his wife, whom he considers as one of the most important factors behind his success. “After my father and my sister, it is my wife who sacrificed her own perspective career so as to allow Raina to continue his research without any distraction. She is an M.A., B.Ed. herself and could have done very well as a teacher but she chose to look after the family, instead. I shall be very grateful to her for this. We have three daughters and all three of them have made me very proud. My eldest daughter is pursuing her PhD in Mathematics from Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University; the younger one is pursuing B. Tech from Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah UniversitY; and the youngest one is studying in Ninth Standard. Every member of my family has contributed in what I am today and I feel fortunate and grateful to have all of them,” he speaks with moist eyes.

Raina is hoping for doing even better in future as he will be working on putting more of his knowledge in wods and making them available to masses in the form of books. He has this message to give to all our readers as we wraps up our chat, “There is one and only one way to success and that is through Hard Work. Honest and dedicated hard work, if done with utter sincerity and keeping your morality intact can take you places. Success has no option but to follow you then.”

 

 

 

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