WHEN THE Mohali campus of the Indian School of Business was to be inaugurated in 2012, we wanted to create a plaque symbolising the local ethos. A colleague suggested that we get the inaugural plaque designed by Shri Nek Chand himself. We were not sure if he would agree. The colleague then took it upon herself the task of approaching him and exploring this idea. As things turned out, not only did he agree but he also invested his efforts in directing the creation. As a result, we got a beautifully designed plaque in the form of an open book, in his signature mosaic, set in two thick clay tablets. On the left side of the open book is an image from the Mahabharata where Arjuna is aiming at the fish by looking at its reflection in the water below. Nek Chand wanted this to signify the level of focus students at the ISB should possess – a simple yet strong message signifying the concept of learning centricity at an academic institution.
The right side has a metal sheet engraved with the names of Finance Minister Shri P Chidambaram, Chief Minister Sardar Parkash Singh Badal and Deputy Chief Minister Sardar Sukhbir Singh Badal, who were present on the formal inauguration of the campus on December 2, 2012. This is also the day that we celebrate as ISB Day.
We were very delighted when Shri Nek Chand agreed to attend the inaugural function. The finance minister, in his address, called out his name and acknowledged Nek Chand’s immense contribution to City Beautiful and the region. There was warm and thunderous applause when Nek Chand stood up during the mention.
At ISB, we have positioned this plaque in the lobby so that all our visitors see it. To us, it is not just a plaque but a piece of history, a work of art and shared tradition that we are proud to possess. The writer is Director, External relations and Human Resources, Indian School of Business, Mohali