The Honorary Secretary's page...
Dear Old Paulites and friends
Since my email to members on 29 July 2021, the Committee has been keeping an eye on the increasing number of Covid cases over the past few weeks. Despite the lockdown being lifted and the high percentage of adults over 16 years old having received the first and second jabs of the vaccine, daily cases of people catching Covid are around 30,000 (and sometimes exceed that) with hospitalisations and deaths increasing slowly. We are also now approaching Autumn and Winter when we are most vulnerable. Given these circumstances, the Committee, regretfully, has decided to defer our AGM and Reunion lunch again this year. We are all very disheartened about this but on balance, the Committee decided that it was better to be safe than sorry, in view of the uncertainties ahead.
Regarding the AGM, as for last year, most of the items for discussion are either procedural standard items and/or covered in the Hon Secretary's Report sent to members on 29th July 2021 together with the Hon Presidents Report which is normally included with the Annual Accounts. The latter for the year ended 31 March 2021 has been prepared and a summary of the results and financial position of the Association has been included in the Hon Secretary's Report.
Since the Hon Secretary's Report was sent to members, we have not heard anything further directly as to developments at the School, nor progress of the study of the Strategic Review which was being hampered by the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in India. Enquiries are continuing to establish what the current position is. However, in addition to our OPA(E) website, there is now an official Paulite Alumni Website, PAULITE.org, dedicated to the alumni, teachers and administrative staff of the School. It is set up to foster greater connection among the wider Paulite community and continued dialogue between Old Paulites and their alma mater. It is also a source of news about the School, discussions between members about various topics and is well worth logging on to.
As always, the Committee join me in sending you and your families our best wishes and to take care and stay safe. Let us hope that 2022 is a brighter and happier year than the year that we are in.
With kind regards
Please renew your annual OPA(e) subscription!
Honorary Secretary's report, OPA(E) AGM 2019
Old Paulite Association (Europe)
17th Annual General Meeting, 13th July 2019
Honorary Secretary’s Report
The Honorary Secretary (on behalf of the Committee) presents his report to members of The Old Paulites Association (Europe) (OPA(E)) for the year ended 31 March 2019.
1. Committee matters
1.1 Committee Membership
(a) The Patron of the Association is D S Gibbs OBE. The current Committee membership comprises the Hon President J K Hammond (JKH), Hon Vice Presidents J Martin (JM), K G C Pearce (KP) and A Sarkissian (AS) and ten other ordinary members, B P Bhattacharya (BPB), Z Cama (ZC), A Chaudhuri (AC), E Cohen (EC) (Hon Treasurer), S Das (SD), R Jaiswal (RJ), A Kar (AK), N Kulisra (NK), D A Medland (DAM) (Hon Secretary) and Y Siddiqui (YS). Under the Rules of the OPA(E), the maximum number of eligible ordinary Committee members (excluding the Hon President and Hon Vice Presidents) is ten.
(b) As set out in the Rules of the OPA(E), members of the Committee are appointed initially for a two-year term, following which they are eligible for re-election. Committee member Monir Hussain has returned to Bangladesh, having completed his studies in the UK. We thank Monir for his contribution to the Committee during his tenure and wish him our very best wishes for the future. We are, however delighted to welcome two younger new members, Rajiv Jaiswal (Lawrence 2014) and Sourav Das (Havelock 2017), who the Committee has co-opted in his place and to fill the remaining vacancies. Their contribution to our Committee meetings has already proved to be very constructive and brings a refreshingly new perspective to our discussions bearing in mind their more recent experience of the School, its activities and the educational environment in which it operates. Nevertheless, the Committee would continue to welcome a steady flow of new younger members to sit on the Committee on a rotational basis to recognise a wider cross section by age and attendance at the School to be achieved.
(c) Our President, Joe Hammond, and Vice President, Ken Pearce, continue to take a very active role in the affairs of the Committee and in the promotion and progress of Vision 2023, about which more below. Since the last AGM, DAM resumed the role of Hon Secretary (assisted by Rajiv Jaiswal) from Yusuf Siddiqui who wished to pursue post graduate studies in Austria in addition to continuing with his current demanding work load. The Committee thanks Yusuf for his contribution to the affairs of the Association during his tenure as Hon Secretary and looks forward to YS’s continued involvement with the Association’s affairs as a Committee member.
(d) As reported in last year’s Hon President’s and Hon Secretary’s Reports, our long serving Hon Treasurer Ellis Cohen was taken ill. Ellis has been undergoing treatment since then and we all wish him a speedy recovery and return to his position as Hon Treasurer in the near future. We are also delighted to know that Ellis and his family and guests will be attending our forthcoming Reunion lunch and we look forward to seeing him again then. In the meantime, Biraja Bhattacharya (BP)
continues to stand in for Ellis and we are thankful to him (assisted by Sourav Das) for continuing to do so, on top of his many other commitments.
1.2 Vision 2023 and Interaction with other Associations, SPS and the School Board of Governors
(a) Members were informed of the breakthrough progress with regard to the commissioning of the Strategic Review by consultants PwC which began in early September last year in the Hon President’s Christmas letter to members of 15 December 2018. As part of the Review, the consultants requested the completion of an electronic Survey questionnaire which they asked as many Old Paulite (OP) members to complete. We are informed that over 200 OPs responded. The Committee thanks all those OPA(E) members who completed the questionnaire and submitted their responses and thoughts to the consultants.
(b) Following the completion of the Confidential Strategic Review by the consultants, the Report was handed to the Bishop of Calcutta on the 4th April 2019 , by Mr. Pradip Burman, together with Bish Mukherjee, Ranjan Bakshi (members of V-2023 Advisory Review Group) and a representative of the consultants. It is worth briefly recapping on this momentous and milestone event, as mentioned in the email on 29th April 2019 to our members.
In 2015, Vision-2023 was launched which included a 5-point plan to return St Paul’s to its rightful place among India's leading academic institutions, recognizing that the year 2023 marks the 200th anniversary of the founding of St Paul’s. The first critical element was to hire a neutral, independent third-party consultant to objectively review and analyse the school's operations, its opportunities and challenges, from which a strategic plan to achieve the Vision-2023 goal could be formulated.
After a false start and two extensive selection processes, PwC was selected as the consultant-of-choice by the Advisory Review Group (ARG) led by Mr. Pradip Burman. With the blessing of Bishop Biswas, the PwC team began their engagement in September 2018. Over the next 8 months, the PwC team completed a rigorous fact-based assessment covering all critical areas of school: finance/accounting, operations/infrastructure, governance/administration, and the educational system. Several OPs have contributed to this effort in two ways: through monetary contributions to help fund the PwC consulting effort, and by completing the PwC survey to solicit OP feedback.
Another critical element was to create structural engagement between the OP community, the Bishop of Calcutta, and the SPS Board of Governors. Over the last 4 years, Ken Pearce and Joe Hammond developed a strong working relationship with the Bishop of Calcutta, the Chairman of the Board of Governors (BoG) and the final decision-maker on SPS. It was critical to have full support from the Bishop / BoG around the PwC engagement. To this end, Ken and Joe maintained steady and open communication during the PwC effort. In October 2018, Bishop Ashoke Biswas, who approved the PwC engagement with the Vision-2023 team, retired as the Bishop of Calcutta. He was succeeded by Bishop Probal Kanto Dutta. Mr. Burman, Ken, and Joe ensured the continuity of the PwC Strategic Review through deliberate meetings and steady communication with the new Bishop.
The Strategic Review Report was delivered to the Bishop at a meeting on 4th April 2019.The meeting went well. The Bishop was enthused to have the report and will form a committee to study it and recommend next steps. The report, the final output from the PwC team, is now the property of the Bishop and the SPS BoG.
In a previous update (September 2016) we informed the OP community that the Bishop at the time, in giving OPs support to conduct the Strategic Review, insisted that any research work remains 3
strictly confidential and that under no circumstances be made freely available on the internet and social media. We have, and will, continue to honour that commitment. More recently, as reported in the press in India, Bishop Paritosh Canning (previously Bishop of Barrackpore) has been appointed Bishop of Calcutta in place of Bishop Dutta. Bishop Canning is known to Ken Pearce and used to sit on the Board of Governors of St Paul’s. He was aware of the commissioning of the Strategic Review and now returns as Chairman of the Board of Governors. However, the Vision 2023 team will keep us informed on ongoing discussions to implement the recommendations from the PwC report, seeking the new Bishop’s agreement when required.
(c) As reported previously, one of the essential aims of Vision 2023 is the creation of an Endowment or Corpus Fund to provide the resources to implement the recommendations arising from the Strategic Review. Members were reminded in previous reports that major public schools in Britain and private schools in India and America, have substantial Corpus or Endowment Funds which provide essential additional funding and grown through alumni donations. St. Paul’s has never benefitted from that facility. It remains a major shortcoming. Once the Corpus Fund is launched, it is intended that this fund will be professionally managed and administered by a Board of Trustees (which will include Old Paulites) that will allocate funds to priority school projects and initiatives, working in association with the school’s Governors and to implement the agreed recommendations in the Strategic Review. The planning of the arrangements for setting up the Corpus Fund must be a priority and members will be informed as matters develop.
(d) Fund Raising. The Fund-Raising Sub-Committee of the OPA(E) is considering how best members can assist in this endeavour relating to the Corpus Fund and in the meantime, all Old Paulites and members are encouraged to give serious consideration to make donations, large and small, to be raised cumulatively over the six years to 2023 and beyond. The OPA(E) has already assisted in the funding of the Strategic Review (out of its School Development Fund) although no further funding will be released until any funding of the agreed recommendations arising from the Strategic Review are to be implemented, as authorised by the Board of Trustees referred to above and the ratification of the OPA(E) members.
(e) As in previous years, we continue to receive notifications from other OPAs about events held by them, in particular from OPA Kolkata, OPA Thailand and OPA North America (OPANA) notifying us of their AGMs and other events. In this context, interaction with other OPA chapters have related principally to the Vision 2023 initiative and other matters posted on Facebook. The OPA Kolkata held their dinner at the Oberoi Grand in December which Committee member Yusuf Siddiqui attended.
(f) All OPA chapters have been asked to provide us with news about any of their OP members coming to visit or work in the UK or in Europe, when known and to contact the OPA(E). In this context, although nothing has been set yet we know that the OPANA would like to hold a reunion in Toronto, Canada, during the long weekend 11th to 14th October. Any OP's from elsewhere visiting at that time would be welcome to attend and should contact the OPANA.
1.3 Membership subscriptions
(a) From the year 2018/19 onwards, members agreed an increase in the annual subscription from £20 to £30. Previously, the membership had remained at £20 for many years since inception of the 4
OPA(E). To those members who pay their annual subscription by standing order, please could you amend your standing order to reflect the increase, if you have not already done so.
We continue to face the problem of tardy subscription non-payers. For the current year 2019/20, we still await payment from some 52 members let alone from arrears stretching back over many years. OP eligible members in this category, you know who you are! Should all members bring their subscriptions up to date over the past three years alone, our funds would increase by some £4,700. Please will those members who have not as yet paid their annual subscription for the current (and previous years where applicable) do so at the earliest opportunity.
(b) It goes without saying that it is difficult to continue the administration of the Association without the financial support of its members. Members are reminded that, generally, the subscription covers not only the administration costs of running the OPA(E) but also provides an opportunity to transfer an amount to the School Development Fund from any surplus arising each year. However, the above-mentioned increase in the annual subscription was undertaken to reflect also the expenditure incurred by our Association in monitoring the progress of the Strategic Review referred to above by contributing towards the expenditure of committee members attending meetings in Delhi and Kolkata with the ARG and the Bishop of Kolkata, whilst on (and breaking into) personal visits to India and Thailand.
1.4 Financial matters
(a) The financial position of the OPA(E) remains in overall surplus after taking into account certain exceptional expenditure incurred during the year, as follows:
(i)Transfer of £10,000 to the ARG out of the School Development Fund as a contribution towards the external consultant’s fees relating to the Strategic Review.
(ii)Part funding (£700) of Rev and Mrs Halder’s hotel and other expenditure in London during their visit together with a contribution (of £700) towards the expenditure incurred by KP in attending meetings with the Bishop in Kolkata.
(b) The Accounts of the OPA(E) for the year ended 31 March 2019 will be tabled at the forthcoming AGM and will show that expenditure exceeded income for the year by £785 (2018 – income exceeded expenditure by £240). Total bank balances at 31 March 2019 stood at £7,208 (2018 - £17,808), including the ‘ring fenced’ School Development Fund of £ 3,786 (2018 - £13,528).
2 In Memorium
It is with great regret that we have learnt of the passing of several Old Paulites and Masters. Bernard Brookes, who was a master at St Paul’s in the 50’s before moving to and becoming Headmaster at Dr Graham’s Homes in Kalimpong (and during his tenure as Headmaster there, served as a Governor of St Paul’s as well) passed away in January 2019. In addition, Schoolmasters Hardip Singh and S S Naidu also passed away in the USA and India respectively.
We were also notified of the deaths of Old Paulites Arsham Sarkissian in Canada, Don Tanner in Australia, Betty Elloy in the U K, Vivek Dhar and Harsh Mohta in India, Ekram Akhtar Uddin Mollah in 5
Bangladesh and Prem Thadani, Pradip Lall, M K Rahut, Shantanu Singh, Dr Penjore Teshring Dhupka, Mohit Agarwal, N K Sharma, Abdul Hussain, Jaidev Singh, Col Ace Roy and Capt Anil Chandra Roy elsewhere.
Notes about Betty Elloy, Arsham Sarkissian and Bernie Brookes are given in our website with Twitter feeds on others.
3 Committee and Sub Committee Meetings
Since the last AGM on 14th July 2018, the Committee has met four times, on the 6th October 2018, 9th February 2019, 27th April 2019 and 8th June 2019, all at The Oriental Club, London W1C 1ES. Committee members and other attendees were 8, 10, 9 and 8 respectively. Minutes of Committee meetings (in abbreviated form) are usually shared with other Associations and posted on our web site, when appropriate.
The Fund-Raising Sub-Committee (FRSC) (now comprising BPB, ZC, RJ, SD and DAM) met once since the last AGM, on 21st June 2019. Informal notes are taken of the discussions held and are submitted to the Committee for their consideration at ordinary committee meetings.
Committee members attend all committee and sub-committee meetings at their own expense, never claiming travel costs despite some living a substantial distance from London. The Association's administrative expenses would be far higher and would probably not be covered by the present annual subscriptions if the association had to routinely meet those costs.
As ever, we are very grateful to ZC for hosting the meetings at the Oriental Club and for his generous hospitality at the club.
4 OPA(E) Communications
Our OPA(E) website www.oldpaulites.org continues under the very able stewardship of Committee member Arindam Chaudhuri, with over 167,900 hits at the time of writing. It remains an open website allowing easy access for all members to information and news of the OPA(E), the School, other Associations, updates on initiatives and forthcoming events, and links to other sites. The website also provides a Twitter link on which members can exchange views and messages on a real time basis.
Members are reminded that the Newsletter is now displayed on our website. Whilst a few articles have been submitted in the past, our editor, KP, would be grateful if members would consider submitting articles for inclusion which would be of interest to members. As mentioned previously, articles of interest need not be exclusively related to the School but could include more general articles of interest, not only about visits to the School and to India but also on other local topical matters relating to educational matters both locally and nationally. 6
(a) David and Sally Gibbs
Cindy Verma (nee Gibbs) keeps us appraised of news about her father (and our Patron) Rector David Gibbs and wife Sally. She tells us that they all made an amazing trip in November last year to India, after realising how much her parents wanted to go back one more time and visited the School. The trip was a huge hit and they really enjoyed seeing old friends, old staff including Mrs. Rao (and the family) in Bangalore (N.K.S. Rao’s widow) and Mrs Sheila Roy, old boys, St. Paul’s and just being back in India. They thought the school was in good shape and met up with Rev and Mrs Halder, whom Cindy and her husband Pradip see every time they are in Darjeeling. They were accompanied on their visit to St Paul’s by OPs S S Bhattacharjee (who was the first school captain serving under Rector Gibbs) and Sourajit Palchoudhuri. The Old Paulites were also so kind and, amongst other small functions and get together with Old Paulites like Harish Patel, Ranodhir Palchoudhuri, Rajiv Chawla, Sunil Gandhi, and others, JP Roy arranged a lovely gathering for them at the Tollygunge Club in Kolkata. Sourajit Palchoudhuri kindly hosted them at his tea garden for a final rest and recuperation before they returned home.
Since then, however, Rector Gibbs has been taken into a care home, close to home, with a degree of dementia, blood pressure issues and has become very wobbly on his ‘pins’. He is also being treated for anaemia. He needs 24 hour a day care now. Sally is still at home with support from carers. Their memories of their happy years in Darjeeling are still very fresh in their minds and are much talked about. We send them all our best wishes.
(b) Visit of Rev Halder
As reported by the Hon Secretary last year, Rev and Mrs Halder visited the UK last year in June. They came over to receive an award on behalf of the School for its recognition as amongst the best places to study. Several members of the Committee met up with them during their visit.
(c) Ascent of Everest
We were also delighted to hear that Karma Tenzing (a fellow Old Paulite) became the third Old Paulite to have scaled Mount Everest on May 15th this year. For the first time, our SPS flag was raised at the summit (see photo below). We all congratulate Karma on his great achievement.
(d)Father LeBlond School
Members may be interested to know that in the year 2000, a school was established in commemoration of Rev Canon Kenneth Oscar LeBlond who was Chaplain to St Paul’s School for many years in the 60s and 70s. He was loved and respected by all. Distinguished academicians and a number of St Paul’s alumni were involved in designing and building the curriculum of the school with the common vision of empowering the youth with knowledge, 8
strong principles and morals based on the ideals of ‘love, trust and triumph’ which is the motto of the school. The school has grown to have some 270 students and is based in the heart of North Bengal, built in the midst of beautiful tea gardens on a ten-acre site.
(e) We have recently been informed that OP Vien Singh (1962) has published a book which is a collection of songs and sonnets, entitled "Songs, Sighs & Sonnets" The theme common to all is love as the main motivator and the main source of pain. Your Hon Secretary recalls that Vien has always been interested in the written word. He wrote his first song when he was 13 and completed his first novel when he was 17. Vien, by profession, is a fashion designer and consultant. His hobbies are painting, music and curating food. He is at present half way through writing a fictional novel that deals, in part, with Calcutta in the 50s and 60s.
4.3 Communications with members of the OPA(E)
Members are reminded that the website is also used as a vehicle to communicate with members regarding the renewals of subscriptions and notifications about events such as the AGM and annual reunion get-togethers, in addition to sending emails to individual members about these events and other matters.
5 Events and other matters
5.1 Darjeeling Childen’s Trust
We have continued our association the Darjeeling Children’s Trust (DCT), a small UK registered charity, to provide support for the latter’s activities. The aim of DCT is to support underprivileged, disadvantaged and orphaned children and young people in Darjeeling into better education and to help improve their social and living conditions where this has an adverse impact on them achieving a better education. They thus improve the lives of children and young people in Darjeeling through education, training and better living conditions. DCT puts children and young people at the heart of all that they do. They work responsively via partnerships with local people in Darjeeling to minimise their overheads and maximise their impact.
One of the local Trustees of DCT is an Old Paulite. We look forward to hearing in the future about how matters have progressed between both parties following preliminary discussions held between one of the Trustees and Rev Halder as to how both parties could work together for the mutual benefit of the students.
DCT recently celebrated their 10 years existence in 2018 and in the past 10 years, over £590,000 has been raised. In this context, two Committee members and other OPs attended a fund-raising ball in April last year at The Grange Tower Bridge Hotel which was very well attended. Members are urged to consider supporting the work of DCT directly by way of donations or via the OPA(E).
5.2 Himalayan Hill and Plains Schools Reunion Lunch
A number of OPs attended the Himalayan Hill and Plains Schools Reunion Lunch in May 2018 at the Clay Oven Banqueting Suites in Wembley, London. Schools from Darjeeling, Ghora Gali, Kashmir, Kurseong, Murree, Mussourie, Naini Tal, Sanawar, Simla and Takdah were represented at the lunch which was well organised with music and dancing after the lunch. It was surprising how many people knew each other from different schools and from Kolkata. We were told that this was the last lunch of this nature which has been held every two tears in the past. But the organisers have said this before and a lunch has been held again, back through popular demand! Watch this space in 2020!
5.3 OP Reunion Lunch
Our Reunion Lunch last year continued to be a most enjoyable event. This year’s Reunion Lunch (to be held on 13 July 2019), will again be held at the Bombay Brasserie in London, which puts on a marvellous spread for us. This year’s lunch promises to be an equally enjoyable and interesting event. Our Hon President will update us should any further progress be known about on Vision 2023 and the Strategic Review since the last update to members in April 2019.
As always, the Committee would very much like as many members to attend, details about which have already been sent to members by email. If members intending to attend have not already done so, please contact DAM to register your attendance as soon as possible.
5.4 Paulite Forever souvenir brochure
We still have a few copies of the Paulite Forever souvenir brochure (to mark the occasion of the celebrations in October 2014) available for sale. Should members wish to obtain a copy, please get in touch with DAM. (Each copy now costs £20.00 and a few copies will be available for sale at the forthcoming Reunion Lunch.)
6 Membership of the OPA(E)
At the subscription year end 2018/19, the OPA(E) membership had increased to 115.
The Old Paulite Association is proud to present the First GODDARD MEMORIAL LECTURE
Leslie James Goddard, O.B.E. was the longest serving Rector of St. Paul’s School, Darjeeling from 1934 – 1964. He may be credited with transforming a minor `English’ Public School into a major `Indian’ one, with an international reputation. When he arrived in February 1934 after the Bihar earthquake in January, the School was in ruins. This was his first major challenge among many others he faced during his long tenure.
Born in Essex in 1900, he studied at Brentwood School, Essex and joined Trinity Hall Cambridge for his M.A. (Cantab) in History. He captained Trinity Hall in cricket and football. After Cambridge, he took a course in Theology. He was then House Master at St. Lawrence School, Ramsgate before he first came to India to teach at Bishop Cotton Shimla in the mid-twenties. In 1931 he married Maisie Fox who he had met in Shimla. They had two children Michael and Judy. After a short spell he returned to teach in England until he was chosen to succeed Rev Pelly as Rector of St. Paul’s in 1933. When he joined, the School was struggling with the number of students down to 130. With the strong support of Bishop Foss Westcott he set about restoring the buildings and classrooms and building the iconic School Chapel, which has become a symbol of the School. At the time the students were mainly ex-patriate English, Anglo-Indians, Armenians and a few Indians. The first Indian School Captain Arun Gupta was chosen in 1938.
The depression of the thirties was followed by the trying times of the Second World War. He guided the School through Indian Independence in August 1947 with the lowering of the Union Jack and raising of the Indian Tri-colour on the Quad. This was followed by the exodus of the English students. With the rising reputation of the school, it began to attract students from Burma (now Myanmar), Thailand and as far as Iran. In all this he was supported by dedicated and variously talented teaching staff whom he chose with his unerring instinct. The Chapel with morning and evening services was at the heart of the activities. Along with his classes in Divinity, his sermons were masterly expositions of his broad humanistic vision.
Known affectionately as `Pa’ he was nevertheless a strict disciplinarian, handy with the cane. Apart from studies and examinations, emphasis was placed on sports and gym to produce `all-rounders’. Cricket was his first love and he invited leading English and Indian cricketers to visit the School. Deciding against returning to England he chose to be a leader in the Indian education scene and an adviser to the Government of West Bengal.
He was justly proud when he was awarded the O.B.E. in 1956 for services to the cause of education. The fifties could be termed the `Golden Years’ of St. Paul’s, playing its role in a newly-independent country. In 1962 he suffered a cerebral attack which led him to retire to Penn in Buckinghamshire in 1964. Fittingly his house was named `Jalapahar’ where he breathed his last in 1984. His emphasis on building character and on duty in helping the under-privileged was imbued in all who studied during his time at St. Paul’s.
His majestic benediction on the final day of school still reverberates in the minds of boys from the Goddard years.
Go forth into the world in peace;
Be of good courage;
Hold fast that which is good;
Render to no one evil for evil;
Strengthen the fainthearted;
Support the weak;
Help the afflicted;
Love and serve the Lord.
Professor Rehman Sobhan
Professor Rehman Sobhan was educated at St. Paul’s School, Darjeeling (1942-50), Aitchison College, Lahore (1951-52) and Trinity Hall, Cambridge (1953-56). He has served as a Professor of Economics, Dhaka University, Member, Bangladesh Planning Commission, Director General, Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies, Visiting Fellow, Queen Elizabeth House, Oxford, Founder and Executive Chairman, Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD), Executive Director, South Asia Centre for Policy Studies (SACEPS), Visiting Scholar, Initiative for Policy Dialogue, Columbia University, Senior Research Fellow, Ash Institute of Democratic Governance, Harvard University and is currently Chairman, CPD. In 1991 he served as a member of the first caretaker government headed by President Shahabuddin Ahmed.
Professor Sobhan has held a number of important professional positions which include President, Bangladesh Economic Association, Member, U.N. Committee for Development Planning, Member, Governing Council of the U.N. University, Tokyo, Member of the Board of the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development, Geneva, Member of the Executive Committee of the International Economic Association, Member of the Group of Eminent Persons appointed by the SAARC Heads of State to review the future of SAARC and Chairman of the Board of Grameen Bank.
He was actively associated with the Bengali nationalist movement in the 1960s and the Bangladesh liberation struggle in 1971 where he was designated as Envoy Extraordinary in charge of economic affairs by the first Bangladesh government. He has been awarded the Shadhinata Puroshkar, the nation’s highest civilian award and was the first recipient of the Bangladesh Bank Puroshkar for services to economics.
He has published a large number of books, research monographs and articles published in professional journals, relating to the political economy of development, public enterprise and privatization, foreign aid, petropolitics, agrarian reform, regional cooperation in South Asia, democracy and governance. His most recent works include, Challenging the Injustice of Poverty: Agendas for Inclusive Development in South Asia (2010), his memoir, Untranquil Recollections: The Years of Fulfillment (2015), both published by Sage and From Two Economies to Two Nations: My Journey to Bangladesh (2016), published by Daily Star Books.
Gerry Elloy takes over as Hon. President of the OPA(E)
"We are delighted to inform members and friends that Old Paulite Gerry Elloy is taking over the Hon President's role from Joe Hammond from the New Year onwards. As many are aware, Gerry's father Malcolm was a master at St Paul's for many years, latterly as Headmaster. His mother Nora was also a teacher in the Junior School and the school's organist in chapel.
Gerry Elloy, elder son of Malcolm and Nora, was a pupil at St. Paul’s School from 1951 to 1963. He completed his Senior Cambridge in 1962 and remained on to do the first year of Higher School Certificate in 1963. When his parents retired to Sussex, England, at the end of 1963, Gerry continued his schooling at Hove Grammar School doing A Levels. He then went to The City University, London, where he studied Aeronautical Engineering. On graduation he joined the Royal Air Force (RAF) on a Short Service Commission. Basic officer training was followed by an Applied Engineering Course at RAF College, Cranwell. He completed his service at RAF Coltishall, Norfolk, working as an Engineering Officer on a Lightning Fighter Aircraft Squadron. Following his service, he moved to Sussex with his wife Betty and went into a career in Flight Simulation, working in several design roles and finally retiring after several years as the Flight Team Leader, responsible for all aspects of Flight Systems in the Flight Simulator Manufacturing and Support lifecycle. Gerry and Betty retired to Leicestershire in 2014 to be nearer their daughter Marianne who is Consultant Surgeon.
We are grateful not only to Gerry for agreeing to become our next Hon President but also to Joe Hammond to whom we owe an enormous debt of gratitude for undertaking this role over the past few years and prior to that acting as Hon Secretary. Joe's interest, enthusiasm and indefatigable efforts in all matters relating to the School are unsurpassed, especially in more recent times in the promotion of Vision 2023 in which he is a key player. Fortunately for us,after relinquishing this role, Joe has agreed to continue to be available to us for help and guidance when requested to do so."
Secretary's report 2019
David Medland writes:
"Whilst rummaging through some old Old Paulite paraphanalia and papers, I came across a speech that I gave at the Farewell Dinner in 1964 on behalf of those leaving the School that year and my School autograph book.
I attach (a) the transcript of the speech and (b) some 'Pearls of wisdom and advice' from Masters,senior boys and friends/schoolmates extracted from my autograph book which I hope may be of interest to members! Quite erudite at times!"
St Paul’s School as it approaches 200 years... Vision 2023
We have a number of copies of the Paulite Forever Souvenir Brochure available for sale still at a cost of £33.75 each, including postage
THE DARJEELING CHILDREN and Old Paulites[...]
Microsoft Word document [5.4 MB]
I am attaching the revised Rules of the OPA(E) to replace the ones that we have under the link OPA(E) committee, together with the updated membership table to replace the one we have under the link Matters Arising.
Please view the attached letter from me to members dated 25 October 2014 relating to a few matters that I was asked to do at our recent meeting.
Dear Old Paulites and friends
I attach the second notice and attendance form for our OPAE Reunion Lunch and AGM to be held on Saturday 28 June 2014.This year, we have asked Paul Whittle of the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway Society (the DHR) to give us a short presentation on current developments at the DHR, about which most of us have such fond memories of. I hope that as many of you as possible can make it to the Reunion lunch this year.
Regarding our Annual Registration and Subscriptions for 2014/15, many of you have responded to my requests to renew your membership for the year beginning 1st April 2014. For those who have not, may I please implore you to do so as a matter of urgency. As you know,the Annual subscription for this year remains at £20, and methods of payment have been sent to you earlier. The forms can also be downloaded from our website. As mentioned in previous notifications, it is very time consuming sending chasing letters to Members in this respect.
Finally, I also attach a note relating to the proposed forthcoming event "Paulite Forever" to be held at the School in Darjeeling on 30, 31 October 2014 and 1 November 2014 which Old Paulite, Souri Misra (who is on the PF Celebration Committee for the event), has asked me to draw to the attention of OPA(E) members. The event is a celebration of the move of the School from Kolkata to Jalapahar, Darjeeling, 150 years ago (the School is now 191 years old!) and promises to be a real humdinger of an event coupled with meeting old school friends at the School itself
We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at the Reunion lunch
With best wishes,
Please have a look at the menu for this year's Annual Lunch...
We have received a limited amount of OPA memorabilia in the UK which will be on display at the OPA(E) Reunion lunch-
ties, cravats, key chains and mugs, all £5 each and the tea shirts, £10 each.
The OPA(E) has initially reserved a table for ten persons at the forthcoming Himalayan Hill Schools Reunion event, details of which are given on our website. Should any member wish to attend, please contact either David Medland or Ken Pearce to co-ordinate our attendance, please.