Since time immemorial, the relationship between guru and shishya (teacher and student) is considered to be most pious and is highly revered. And, Guru Purnima is an occasion when this relationship is celebrated in order to express gratitude and show respect to teachers. The festival is observed on the day of the full moon in the month of 'Ashadha' as per the Hindu calendar (June-July).
Therefore, on the occasion of Guru Purnima (which falls on July 19 this year) Teno, an app that enables easy communication between teachers/schools and students/parents, has joined hands with Scarecrow Communications to express its gratitude towards teachers and pay them their due respect with a special prayer, solely dedicated to the teachers.
The prayer has been uploaded on SoundCloud. The link has been promoted and made available on Facebook and Twitter. (Displayed in this article is a composite audio which is available on SoundCloud).
Though it is mostly students who sing hymns or offer prayers to seek a better and more productive life, this prayer, which is in the form of a song, has been somewhat modified and we hear teachers offering prayers for a more sorted life. The prayer conveys their (teachers') daily struggle to live up to the unending expectations of students and their parents.
Speaking about the initiative, Manish Bhatt, founder-director, Scarecrow Communications, says, "This is the first-ever prayer offered by teachers towards students and their parents. We wanted to empathise with the teachers and show them a ray of hope by creating the prayer. In ancient times, teachers were highly regarded due to their intellect and proficiency. However, as times changed, the perception towards teachers also changed and they are today expected to keep abreast with technology and knowledge-sharing tools, while simultaneously shape a brighter future for the new generation. This has made teachers feel burdened."
According to Bhatt, the idea behind the whole exercise is to convey the message that teaching is not an easy job, and teachers should be given their due respect.
"I believe Guru Purnima is the perfect occasion to draw people's attention towards the plight of the teachers and this song is a means to rekindle the respect for them in everyone's mind," Bhatt adds.
The prayer is a musical mélange of traditional eastern melody and western orchestra. It has been sung by a group of four singers -- Kaizad Gherda, Francois Vincent Castellino, Shaanzeen Arthena, and Hamshika Aiyer of 'Chammak Challo' (from the movie Ra-One) fame.
The music has been composed by Rooshin Dalal. Live instruments including the acoustic guitar, the bass guitar, the cello, the flute, the violin, the viola, and the shehnai were used in the composition for which some of the finest musicians from the orchestra of Illaiyaraaja and A R Rahman, flew down from Chennai.
Elaborating about the song, Anurag Dixit, vice-president, Teno, says, "Unfortunately, teachers don't get their due credit today. Since our brand believes in creating a happier parent-teacher ecosystem, we decided to highlight the pain which a teacher goes through to put things in an ordained manner and shape the future of kids."
Adding further, he says, "For us, it was not just a song, but anything that could pay tribute to teachers. One of the teachers cried on listening to the song."