Kolkata: Whenever we talk of the subject Mathematics in our school days, we only tend to recollect the difficulties we faced while comprehending a sum about a monkey climbing up and slipping down a greased bamboo pole or water going in and coming out
of a cistern.
Perhaps, there is not a single person among us, who will be able to dissociate the Mathematics book by Keshab Chandra Nag, popularly known as KC Nag in our school days.
The Mitra Institution in Bhowanipore, where KC Nag had been a teacher from 1924 to 1960, will be celebrating his 125th birth anniversary in a grand way as a tribute to him on Friday. A memorial book on KC Nag will be published, which will focus on the various aspects of his life.
Nag was born at Gurap in Hooghly, around 125 years ago, on the day of Rathyatra (July 10, 1893) and his books on Mathematics are still very popular among students from Class V to Class X.
"By the end of this month, we will hold a memorial lecture on the great mathematician," said Asit Baran Giri, the headmaster of Mitra Institution, Bhowanipore.
Nag had passed the ISC examinations on 1914 with first division marks. He then graduated with Mathematics, Sanskrit and Arts and joined Krishnanath Collegiate School in Berhampore as a Mathematics teacher.
Impressed with his teachings, Sir Ashutosh Mukhopadhyay brought him to Kolkata and introduced him as a teacher of Mitra Institution.
He became the headmaster of the school in 1956 and served the post till 1960.
Noted personalities like Hemanta Mukhopadhyay, Subhas Mukherjee, Tarun Banerjee, Arjun Sengupta, Siddharta Shankar Ray to name a few were his students.
Apart from his skills in Mathematics, he had a knack to serve the common people, which he had inherited from the then principal of Ramkrishna Math and Mission Vishuddhananda Maharaj, who he regarded as his guru.
He was a disciple of Ma Sarada Devi. From 1925 to 1980, he wrote his diary named Ratna Bedi that contained many poems, songs, and jokes. He also took part in the Freedom Movement. He went to jail after participating in Mahatma Gandhi's "Quit India" movement.
The most interesting aspect associated with his life was his avid interest in sports - like cricket, football and tennis. He was a life member of Mohun Bagan club.
His love for cricket also led to his bad helath. On February 1, 1985, he suffered a cerebral attack due to tension while watching a test match between India and England.
He survived for two years after the attack but died on February 6, 1987.