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Two former principals take leave two days apart

By CM. Paul
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Kolkata, Nov. 26. Darjeeling, 26 November 2020: Two Salesian College Sonada past principals left for their eternal reward two days apart. Eleventh principal Fr Sebastian Alancheril (1980-1981) and 13th principal Fr Varghese Kalluvachel (1993-2000) passed away on 25th and 26th November 2020.
While Fr Alancheril (A.J. Sebastian) aged 90 passed away in Kolkata Salesian provincial house due to cardiac respiratory failure at 7 am on 25th November, Fr Kalluvachel passed away due to chronic liver disease caused by jaundice relapse at 1.30 am  on 26th November at Caritas Hospital Kottayam, Kerala.

Fr. Alancheril was Rector and Principal of Salesian College Sonada before he became Vice-Provincial and Provincial of Calcutta Province.

Dr. Kalluvachel, 66, also known as K.C. Varghese, did his first doctorate in Philosophy in 1988 from Salesian University, Rome. He taught philosophy for over 20 years in several colleges in India and Sri Lanka. He was Rector of the Studentate of Philosophy at Salesian College Sonada, Darjeeling, and Novice Master and the Councilor for formation for Salesians in Sri Lanka.

Fr. Kalluvachel (K.C. Varghese) did a second PhD, at CLARETIANUM Institute of Theology of Consecrated Life affiliated to the Pontifical Lateran University, Rome and taught at Salesian University Rome before becoming Rector of Salesian Studentate of Philosophy at Sonada.

''Fr A.J. Sebastian sdb (90) a former Rector and Principal and faculty in the Department of English, associated with the college for 18 years, and always interested in the developments happening in the college, was a guide and mentor to me personally and many others of my generation of students in Salesian College. He was affable and freindly and always concerned about the welfare of others,'' recalls Principal Dr George Thadathil.

''Fr Dr Varghese Kalluvachel sdb was Principal (1993-2000) and I took over from him. We were colleagues in the Department of Philosophy which he headed and after a break returned to. His humourous and perceptive comments on events happening near and far will be missed and the student community a valuable mentor,'' says Principal.

He adds, ''The college community condones these two losses and shall have a special Online gathering to mark the occasion at 9:30 am and the college shall remain closed for a day [26 November] as a sign of mourning in honour of them.''

The Governing Board Meeting held yesterday began with a condolence meeting for Fr A.J. Sebastian, at which the President Fr Dr Joseph Pauria, sdb, Dr Palas Sengupta (Professor NBU) and Dr Ratnabali Banerjee (former Jt Secretary, UGC) expressed their condolences.

The college community both at Sonada and Siliguri deeply mourn the demise of both past principals and recommend the dear departed to God's mercy. END


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