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05 Jan 2017
Suryakantbhai Parikh, Former Director of Vidyamandir Trust, Palanpur Passes Away

Suryakantbhai Parikh, a visionary academician who as director of Vidyamandir Trust, Palanpur for over 36 years spearheaded and steered its growth towards emerging as a giant in the field of education, passed away peacefully at his home in Pune on January 3, 2017. He was 95.

Parikh Sir, as he was affectionately known, was persuaded by Kanubhai Mehta, who laid the roots of today’s Vidyamandir Trust, to leave Pune and come to Palanpur way back in 1960. He remained at the helm of the institution for over three and a half decades. Starting with a single school, with just three hundred students and twelve staff members, the institution went on to become a giant in the field of education. Today it offers state-of-the-art learning opportunities right from kindergarten to Teachers Training Colleges to more than five thousand students and has four hundred staff members on its rolls. The School for the Differently Abled, Mamtamandir, too, took shape under his leadership and able guidance in 1963. He also was the pioneer who introduced the concept of integrated education where differently abled students study in the regular school system.

A man of impeccable integrity and a born teacher, Suryakantbhai was rightfully awarded the Best Teacher award both by the State Government and the Government of India in 1965 and 1967 respectively. His educational philosophy had its roots in his vast reading and his travels to different corners of the world. He was an avid reader and an active social media user even at the age of ninety-five, keeping in touch with his past students and staff members, always guiding who ever sought his wisdom. 
Suryakantbhai is survived by his sons - Dr. Shailesh (US) and Mukesh (Israel), and daughter Anjali (Pune).

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