Dr R S Kumbar, Librararian (In Charge):
Hailing from a small village in Davangere, Mr Kumbar worked as a part-time lecturer in Shivamogga and a librarian at Mangaluru and Ballari colleges before being appointed as a Library Assistant at NLS, Bangalore on June 28, 1990.
Mr Kumbar, who began his career with a Bachelor’s degree in Library Sciences, continued to pursue a PG programme and a doctoral degree while working at NLS. Incidentally, his PhD thesis topic was ‘Law College libraries with respect to implementation of ICT.’
How did your NLS journey begin?
I was appointed by NLS founder Prof Madhava Menon who had only one question for me: If I would be able to accept a lower fee. For me, it was a matter of pride to be working in a University and I accepted with no hesitation.
I recalled the example of my father, a freedom fighter, who had refused the pension he was entitled to. I started as a Library Assistant and am now retiring as the Librarian (In Charge) – that is a journey I am proud of.
Your experience at NLS:
In one word, NLS is family to me. There was no discrimination among faculty, non-faculty and students. We worked more for the institution and not just for the income.
My biggest inspiration and guiding force was Prof Madhava Menon who clearly emphasized on the concept of working together and the success it brings. The fact that NLS as a University has risen to such high standards is because it was started with such strong ideals in place during its early stages. I am also thankful for NLS founding faculty member Prof Vijayakumar’s support during my tenure.
‘Students were my happiness’: Interacting with our students on a daily basis gave me unforgettable moments and a lot of happiness. Many former students who visit the campus still make a beeline for the library.
Your memorable moments:
Soon after I started out as a Library Assistant, I got married and I was not confident of running my family with my salary at the time. I am grateful to Prof Joga Rao (former Registrar) and Prof Navalgund (former Librarian) who were extremely supportive. They advised me to help my wife study further and plan a future for my family instead of trying to manage it alone. It was because of such wonderful people at NLS that I could plan for an even better future than I had hoped for. (Kumbar’s wife is an engineer who currently works with Bharat Electronics Limited)
A few months ago, I was wondering how I would adapt to spending time at home after retiring. But COVID has made us get accustomed to staying at home as well. Now, my priority is to take care of my family – my father, wife and my two daughters.