Jaideep Shenoy

MANGALORE: Mahesh Odiyoor, an alumnus of Canara High School, Urwa, is now the registrar of a leading medical institution in New Manchester in the U.K. A psychiatrist by profession, Dr. Odiyoor says he owes it all to his alma mater, which, according to him, gave him a strong foundation. Having passed out of the school in 1992, Dr. Odiyoor has not lost his love for the institution or the teachers who taught him.

Dr. Odiyoor, who is presently home on a short holiday with his wife, Anjana Mahesh, took time off to participate in the Teachers’ Day celebrations organised at his alma mater here on Wednesday. He had specially invited Vimala Rao, who was the principal when he was studying in the school. The couple felicitated Ms. Rao by offering her fruits and a shawl.

When Bykady Janardhan Achar, the school’s Hindi teacher, introduced Dr. Odiyoor to the students in a packed school auditorium, there was near pin-drop silence. A smile flitted across Dr. Odiyoor’s face when Mr. Achar recalled a ‘sporting accident’ where he faced a ball from the young Mahesh without pads on and was bedridden for 10 days after being struck a painful blow on the leg.


Prior to the function, Dr. Odiyoor struck a poignant note when he told The Hindu that he could never forget the efforts made by his teachers, which had played a vital role in shaping his career. “The time that I spent in this school is definitely the golden phase of my life,” he said. “The least I could do was to accede to a request by the organisers to be present for a very important function such as this,” he added.

Incidentally, he was sharing the dais with his mother. K.C. Damayanthy, who is now the principal of the school. His father, Mahabaleshwar Bhat, too was present.

When asked if it was affection for his mother that made him attend the function, Dr. Odiyoor said that was not the case.

“Given the opportunity, I would love to catch up with all my teachers in Canara College, where I completed my pre-university course and even Mysore Medical College, where I studied my MBBS.” Dr. Odiyoor basked in the glow of adulation showered on him by the teachers, whom he had made really proud.