My Atm Shatkam
Dr. Kurup worked with the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) of India from 1969 to 1993 serving as a member of the of the Board and Executive Director of NDDB from 1991-1993.
As an International Consultant on Livestock and Dairying since 1993 he has worked countries across the world in Asia, Europe,North and America. He is currently based in Toronto.
Some time ago , I was asked by the veterinarians in Kerala , to write them a note on my working life , as many among the younger colleagues in the profession wanted to know what all , exactly , a “Distinguished Alumnus” of the Kerala Veterinary College did with his professional life. What follows is what I wrote for them.
Recently , Dr.Mathew Abraham invited me to join the AKVNA and I would be delighted to do so. I thought to sent you the note below so you can forward it to him and he can use it to introduce me to the mambers of the AKVNA.
I must begin by stating that I was incredibly lucky in my life and career , often because of the circumstances I was in and the Mentors who groomed me as a young professional , particularly Dr.M . N . Menon , who was my Professor , Principal and then my Director, all the time I was a young Veterinary Surgeon in the Kerala State Department of Animal Husbandry . The most critical and benevolent of his career decisions for me was to advise me to choose the option of working in the Indo-Swiss Project , Mattupattywhich was just about to start then (1963 ) while I also had the option to join the faculty of the Veterinary College , Mannuthy , as a Junior Lecturer!
When I qualified as a Veterinarian in 1959 , I thought I would finally, at the end of things, wind up as a back country pill roller in some obscure village. There was no room for ambition as the profession had still not opened up to specialisations in products and services other than care and treatment of very low producing primitive livestock.
My choice of the Indo-Swiss project as my launch vehicle, however turned out to be providential and from there to the NDDB was the start of an epic voyage into an ocean of knowledge, skills, technology and development. I was lucky to be part of a saga of unprecedented growth , development and adventure, in a sector never before seen as a tool for human and economic development. Also It gave me the opportunity to be part Dr.Kurien’simmaculate team , with a ring side seat all through the next 25 years , and with him as my friend , philosopher , guide
Personally for me it gave an incredible and vibrant career catapulting me into the vortex of professional excellence , enormous executive freedom , exhaustive and extensive global travel and unbelievably exotic tasks and opportunities. After 25 years of this wonderful exposure, I demited office in NDDB as its Executive Director and Board Member in 1993 and started practicing as an International Consultant in , Livestock , Dairy and Livestock Related Livelihood , with instant recognition and burgeoning demand. Initially I had the GOI and State Governments as my Clients and soon I was grabbed by the World Bank in 1994 , as a Short Term Consultant.
Even though I was financially comfortable, and professionally satisfied, World Bank offered me a work culture, work ethics, and financial compensation never before experienced: they respected my professional skills and experience, my competence and above all , my recommendations. They paid me extremely well, totally tax free, all travels by business class, top five star hotels for field missions everywhere and all expenses at actuals without limit. I covered for the World Bank the whole of India, and all of South Asia including Afghanistan. I worked for the World Bank for 17 long years and opted for retirement when I reached the age of 75 in 2011.
I had so far in this write up , been waxing eloquent for long now, mostly blowing my own trumpet and now I seek your indulgence for the final act of impertinence , of attaching my CV to this mail, to give you a cursory view of my entire working life.
With best wishes for a healthy and happy life for you all and with my loving regards for you all and your families.
It is said that when Ādi Śaṅkara ( in eighth century AD) was a young boy of eight and wandering near River Narmada, seeking to find his guru, he encountered the seer Govind Bhagvadpada who asked him, “Who are you?”. The boy answered with these stanzas, which are known as “Nirvāṇa Shatkam” or Ātma Shatkam”. Swami Govindapada accepted Ādi Śaṅkara as his disciple. The verses are said to be valued to progress in contemplation practices that lead to Self-Realization. -From Wikipedia
Audio in Sanskrit and meaning in English of Atmshatakam is available at https://youtu.be/7MooNhXCbHA