Sub-Inspector Pankaj Verma from Jharkhand takes time out from his regular routine to continue teaching at a school, located at walking distance from his police station in Dhanbad. Verma holds a master’s degree in mathematics and later qualified to become a policeman in the state.
Before joining the police force, the Jharkhand sub-inspector ran math coaching classes in Hazaribagh to retain his passion for teaching.
“Teaching at Government Girls High School, Modidih Sijua in Dhanbad, is my hobby. The school is located under the Jogta Police Station where I was recently posted,” The New Indian Express quoted the officer as saying.
He says that teaching mathematics tricks with his students and spending time with them gives him immense satisfaction. Verma conducted math classes up to the graduation level before joining the police department. However, he left teaching after qualifying as a police officer in 2019.
A chance meeting with school principal Satish Singh led him to teaching at the school in Dhanbad, he said. “I found the principal very qualified as well as convincing. But the schools were closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic,” he says. The principal said after the schools reopened post lockdown, the police officer again called him asking for his permission to teach students. “I readily agreed,” said the principal. “Since then, he has been coming to the school regularly, whenever he gets time, and shares math tricks with students”, he added.
“This is really commendable… it will convey a good message. More and more highly educated government officers can now come forward to teach in government schools,” says the principal. “A teacher remains a teacher throughout one’s life and continues to share one’s knowledge. That’s so evident when you think about people like Verma,” says the principal. “Perhaps he can combine the discipline of a police officer with the knowledge that he has. This could be a unique combination,” he said.
Verma’s students say that maths has become easier with the clearer concepts that their teacher helps them with.
Learning math tricks from a police officer is really a new experience for all of us. It also helps in changing the image of the police in the society and reducing fear of police among the people,” said Class 10 students Priya Kumari.
“We look forward to a day when the image of a policeman changes for better,” said another student Shalu Kumari. “Our society should take this experiment in a positive way.”