Chandigarh: Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday turned nostalgic while recalling his association with a research institute and his younger days in the city as Punjab University (PU) teacher.
After demitting office, Singh was on his first visit to the city to deliver valedictory address at an international conference organised by Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development (CRRID) here.
The association of the noted economist with the Union Territory goes back to 1960s as he taught in department of economics at the PU before moving to Delhi. He also owns a house in City's upscale Sector 11.
He had been the chairman of CRRID's governing body.
Singh delivered a 25-minute speech on the "Cooperative Development, Peace and Security in South and Central Asia".
The veteran Congress leader started his speech at the conference by saying,"It gives me great pleasure to be in CRRID again. This is an institution that I have known for many years having been the Chairman of its Governing Body".
"As I stand here, I am overcome by nostalgia. My long association with this institution has provided me with valuable insights and perspectives.
"I am, therefore, delighted to deliver the valedictory address at this conference and would like to thank CRRID for inviting me," Singh told the gathering that also included his former advisor, T K A Nair.
After finishing the speech, the former PM was told by CRRID's Executive Vice Chairman, Rashpal Malhotra, that former PU vice-chancellor and currently senior functionary at CRRID, Prof R P Bambah had turned 90 yesterday.
Dr Singh, who was accompanied by his wife Gursharan Kaur, immediately got up to congratulate Prof Bambah, who was also present at the CRRID conference.
The former PM told the gathering that "Prof Bambah has been a role model for all of us... He is a friend, philospher and guide."
Singh also recalled his days spent at the Panjab University when he used to teach.
Wishing a belated birthday to Bambah, Singh recalled his service to education, saying the former VC served with great distinction.
"You have covered this journey with great aplomb," Singh told Bambah. Later, in a lighter vein, he said, "best is yet to come". Singh also felicitated Prof Bambah by presenting him a shawl.