Man with the flour power calls it a day

He’s been a friend in knead to many over the years. Prof Dharamnath Gaikwad’s is a familiar face at Maharashtra State Institute of Hotel Management and Catering Technology (MSIHMCT) – one of the major government-run hospitality training schools around. Now, after serving the bakery and confectionery department for 33 years, Gaikwad will retire as its head in the month of July.

Raising a ‘toast’: Prof Gaikwad’s colleagues and superiors are very appreciative of him and hope he will continue to serve MSIHMCT(right) even after retirement. Pics/Krunal Gosavi

The state government’s current restrictions over appointing new full-time faculty have made it problematic for MSIHMCT to find a replacement for Gaikwad, who is a favourite among students. Now the institute management is trying to convince the warhorse to stay with the institute on contractual basis post-retirement. 

However, Prof Gaikwad is in no mood to relent, and he says he has different priorities now. “After retirement I want to settle in my village Hiware in Purandar taluka. I want to look after my farm and cultivate sugar apple and pomegranate,” said Gaikwad. On the other hand, the institute MSIHMCT principal Sunetra Roday is confident that the management can convince Gaikwad to stick around. “Prof Gaikwad is very hardworking and has great determination. Both of us joined the institute in the 1980s. I am going to ask him to come back and continue to instruct students.”

About alternatives, in case Gaikwad refuses to oblige, she said, “As ours is a state government college, for all new recruitment we have to approach Mantralaya.” While speaking to MiD DAY, head of Directorate of Technical Education (DTE) SK Mahajan, said, “MSIHMCT is one of the oldest and most reputed institutes in the state. The current senior faculty of the establishment was appointed about 30-35 years ago. The state government will definitely initiate fresh recruitment to appoint full-time faculty at the organisation.” 

The DTE director knows Gaikwad well as Mahajan had served as principal of MSIHMCT before taking over his incumbent responsibilities. “Whether or not he (Gaikwad) wants to rejoin the institute as visiting faculty is his decision. There are some posts vacant in other departments of MSIHMCT too. The government will soon issue an advertisement for hiring to make sure the institute does not suffer due to shortage of expert faculty,” assured Mahajan. 

Did you know?
Maharashtra State Institute of Hotel Management & Catering Technology (MSIHMCT), Pune, formerly known as the Food Craft Institute, was established in 1969 at Nagpur and relocated to Pune in 1974. The institute earned an autonomous status in 1995. At present, the school offers minimum competency vocational courses, diploma, degree and postgraduate diploma programmes at various entry levels in the field of hotel management and travel & tourism.

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