Abdul Rashid Sir : Artist of our decade, light of our lives

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There comes a time in everyone’s life when he starts questioning the very meaning of his journey. Why is the onus of healing everything lying on time? In the last couple of years I have been losing my idols one at a time. It is not fair.

Today, at this very moment the nerves that I have, have stopped responding to the surrounding. A push has blown me to the summer of 2006. A more comfortable setting for my weary nerves.

That is a beautiful time, we were about to leave the majestic lush green playground of our school, for the recess had just ended. It took a mere five minutes for my lunch to get over and I had no idea about the contents of it. It must be the overly heated mashed ladyfingers, as they were the most loved by my friends. Sujay and Rajat’s food used to be a delicacy for me and I remember their boxes of sheer amaze quite distinctly. The 15 minutes break used to end with us discussing a couple of movies or matches. We would play a bit too in the said interval.

Listening to the sound of the hammer slapping the copper plate, we started to stroll from the deep end of the ground. Sometimes we would be 7, on the other times we might be 10. We did not care much as everyone was everyone else’s friend back then. Our walks would turn into strides on the site of Mukesh Sir, and then to heavy sprinting when Sir starts to whistle.

In soggy royal navy blue shirt, with pants having a darker shade of navy blue, and hair all misplaced, we submitted a plea to enter the class of the 6th A. It was in the form of 8 arms stretched as if we were taking an oath. We were a little late than most of our classmates that day. With a smile that would melt the hearts of even the most heartless souls, the teacher allowed us inside and asked us to take the seats. We were already pretty relieved after knowing that Rashid Sir would take this period as the other teacher was absent.

Rashid Sir was our drawing instructor and was one of the most respected and loved teachers. There were many reasons for it, but if anyone had met him even once in their lifetime, all those reasons would start to sound extremely superficial. His presence had the power to sooth the wandering minds and calm the negativity down. I used to be abysmal in the exact field he was worldly renowned.

He knew that I had interest in drawing. Whenever I would take my sketches to him, he would analyse them with me and suggest on how to better my skills. One day, when I was in 5th I showed him a picture that was drawn by my sister. I thought I would be highly praised for the same and Sir would appreciate “my” efforts. He did not say a word to me for the first time in such setup, but his slow pursing of lips talked enough. He rated that too, but did not discuss “the scenery of the village” like he always used to. Even though he marked it as an impressive piece I somehow felt no happiness; it felt nothing like I anticipated.

In the post recess period, Sir gave us the permission to study any subject. I thought of making a scenery that day. I took my drawing sheet that was still present in my bag, owing to last day’s drawing period. Students kept going to Sir to discuss their creations. It occurred to me to do the same and get Sir’s review. I don’t remember exactly what I created that day but what followed is a lifetime lesson and an ingrained memory now. The instance Sir saw the mess I made on the paper, he patted my back. He exclaimed, “I am proud of you. You have made this, this is your work.” That day I not only learnt a very important lesson on honesty but also realised what kind of person I want to become.

Looking back to that instance now, I feel my nerves again.

Rashid Sir did not only teach us how to decorate the drawing sheets but he also gave us a lifelong scenery. A scene in which the world around us changes at an unpredictable pace, it tries to flush down our beliefs at the same rate. But, if only we continue to be who we are, trust the lessons which the teachers have showered upon us, we all have it in us to defeat the evils just with our innocent and pure smiles.

Rashid Sir is here with us and will always be a very important person in all our lives. His drawings would continue to shine upon us and the coming generations. And his immortal lessons will be carried from one generation to another.

Rashid Sir is here and always will be. :’)

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