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Message by Joydeep Dutta, IIT Kanpur. 

I have known Professor Puri since 1999. At that time I was a post-doctoral fellow at the Indian Statistical Institute and I used to visit Professor Suresh Chandra in IIT Delhi quiet regularly. I was introduced to Professor Puri by Professor Chandra. From then whenever I have met him I have always seen him smiling. This is a rare quality in any human being. I do remember traveling in his car quiet a few times from IIT Delhi to Delhi University to deliver some lectures.


In all my interactions with him, I learned how knowledge can make a person so humble. The respect which he showed to young researchers like me is remarkable and that gave one a lot of strength and courage to work hard. I last met him in August 2005 and as always he was smiling. He always encouraged youngsters to work hard and do good research.


I guess the highest tribute that we as young researchers can pay to Professor Puri is to do research of highest standards and secure India's name permanently in the world map of optimization.


Joydeep Dutta

Assistant Professor Dept. of Mathematics and Statistics

I.I.T. Kanpur

Message by S. K. Sehgal (Retired) CMC Ltd.


The news on TV that Prof Puri had met a tragic death left me and the family shocked and unbelieving. Prof Puri was my wife's mama and thus we had a very sacred relationship. But from day one, at the time of my marriage, he stated that he believed more in friendship than in relations of family ties. We were friends ever since then.


He had the special quality of making all his friends and relatives feel that they were very close to him. May be it was his infectious smile or the caring attitude. He was always at hand whenever some one needed help, whether it was physical presence, monetary help or simply moral support. Such gems are rare to find and all his friends will treasure the remembrances with love and gratitude.


S K Sehgal (Retired Executive Director)

CMC Ltd.

Message by Abhinav Roongta (ex- student)

It was very sad to hear about Prof M C Puri's death. I took two of his courses during my B.Tech. in electrical engineering at IITD from 1997-2001. In both the courses I was in his section. The first course was MA 120 in the second semester. Prof. Puri was the course coordinator for this course. He taught very well and explained things thoroughly. I attended his lectures and never had to read the textbook. Whatever notes I took from his lectures were good. He maintained excellent standards in the class. I remember he used to come to class always on time and would take attendance in the first five minutes of the class. Since he himself put lot of efforts in his teaching, he expected the same from his students. He would expect that before you apply a theorem to a problem, you must justify that theorem is applicable to that problem.

I learnt a lot and enjoyed that course even though I did not get ‘A‘ grade. The second course I took with Prof Puri was Probability and Statistics in the seventh semester. Again it was a great learning experience. I remember once a student asked a question during the lecture and Prof Puri was honest to say that "I reserve my comments on this" since he was not sure of the answer.

Prof  M C Puri's personality commanded respect. He was one of the best teachers I came across during my B.Tech. I just could not believe when I read the news. It just feels like yesterday when I used to walk from Nilgiri hostel to the institute and attend his lectures, trying to hurry up so that I can reach the classroom in the first five minutes and not miss the attendance.

I moved to US for my masters and Ph.D. in 2001. Once I tried to find his email ID on IITD's website so that I could write to say hello to him but I did not find the email address. A few days back I was talking to my friend and batchmate Rahul Agarwal and he also said that Prof Puri was a great teacher: He not only knew his subject well but also made efforts to explain it to students well.

I pray that GOD gives Prof Puri's family members the strength to bear this loss.

Abhinav Roongta

Message by Sarbvir Singh (ex- student)

I was a student of Prof Puri from 1988 to 1993 as part of the 5 Year Integrated Masters Program in Maths & Computer Applications at IIT Delhi. He was an exceptional man and teacher. I have done courses under him ranging from ‘Maths I’  to ‘Advanced Optimization’ and I owe my appreciation and understanding of optimization mostly to him. He was kind enough to take the time to indulge my questions and explain the deeper aspects of optimization theory to me when I was just one of his many under graduate students. I think he not only taught me optimization but a much deeper skill of scientific thinking which has stood me in good stead in my career.

During my MBA course at IIM Ahmedabad, I really understood the value of his teaching as I was able to apply optimization to real world issues due to the base that he had helped me build. It brought a lot of joy (and grades!)  in my life as I was actually able to do something with the theory and help entrepreneurs run their business better.

I was deeply saddened to hear of Prof Puri's death but could not help smiling when I read that he had pushed aside his colleagues while not being able to get out of the way himself. To me that was the essence of the man - always others before self.

Sarbvir Singh
Managing Partner
Hercules Capital.

Message by Surender Kumar (ex- student)

Anybody who ever had slightest interaction with Dr. M.C. Puri will be severely shocked at his death.

Dr. Puri taught me Operational Research at Hans Raj College, Delhi University in 1973-74. He was the most dedicated teacher I ever had in my entire graduation and post graduation. The entire class loved to hear him.

He was himself a pass out from Hans Raj College, the Merit Board displays his name with Honour.

Dr. Puri had been continuously involved in research work and he also motivated a number of his colleagues and students to do research work.

His contribution to the Operational Research Society of India (ORSI) can not be forgotten. In 1980s, he organized Annual Conventions of ORSI in Delhi on two occasions and I had the privilege of assisting him.

More important than everything else, Dr. Puri was a unique personality. He will always think and plan how to help others without ever expecting or accepting anything for himself. Talking to him was a pleasure. His heart was pure beyond anybody's imagination.

My tributes to him.

Surender Kumar

State Trading Corporation of India