Thursday, June 17, 2010

FW: {satyapravah} Blind scholar, guided by blind teacher, gets PhD



NAGPUR: He could not see it, but the thunderous, rapturous applause that will ring in Sanjay Jain's ears for a long time told him that he had earned it. Having just won the longest ovation of the ceremony, Jain stood up modestly, a big smile on his face.

For Jain, who is blind since birth, this was one of his life's best moments. He was awarded PhD in law during the 97th convocation ceremony of Nagpur University on Saturday. Interestingly, Jain's guide was head of law department Shirish Deshpande, who is also blind.

This is perhaps for the first time in the country that a blind guide successfully guided a blind scholar. Jain is only the third visually impaired teacher in the university after DW Wadegoankar and Shirish Deshpande. Jain pursued his schooling from a school for blind and also studied at National Institute for Visually Impaired in Dehradun. He, however, pursued further education from regular colleges.

"My friends, teachers and some members of RSS helped me by being my readers. In those days, all material was not available in Braille and there wasn't any technology," he said. The subject of his thesis was 'Taking women seriously – A critical inquiry into the changing parameters of judicial review and perspectives on protection and enforcement of rights of women with special reference to the Constitution of India'.

Jain was earlier rejected by Pune University after he applied for the post of a teacher. Not deterred by the disappointment, he bounced back by getting a teacher's job at the ILS law College in Pune. Sanjay met his wife Suleshi, who has normal vision, when she was a student at Nagpur University. They have a son named Sagar.

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