NEW DELHI: It is a rare honour for a physical education teacher to be chosen for the National Award for Teachers. Raju Paul, a physical education teacher from Kothamangalam, Kerala, was among more than 300 teachers who received the award from President Pratibha Patil here on Wednesday.

There were 13 other teachers from Kerala.

“It was a proud moment,” said Mr. Paul after receiving the award.

He has moulded the careers of many athletes including K.M. Beenamol, former national record holder in the 400 metres.

“Beenamol was my trainee when I was working at St George’s school, Parathod (Idukki)”, said Mr. Paul.

Now he is engaged in coaching 100-odd students at St. George’s Higher Secondary School, Kothamangalam, Ernakulam.

Sini Jose, a member of the India’s gold-winning longer relay team at the Amman Asian championships had been his trainee till 2005.

Among his other protégés have been V. B. Bineesh and Neetu Rajan. — Special Correspondent

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