Thursday, May 15, 2014

A tribute to the Structural Legend named Sane Sir!

My greatest strength as a consultant is to be ignorant and ask a few questions….Peter Drucker

Well no need for introduction for this name as a consultant, what we will be talking about is a consultant only but a structural consultant. Recently small news in the news papers of one Mr Y S Sane passed out might have been neglected by many common citizens of the city! Well, Yashvant Shankar Sane, popularly known as Y S Sane & for many engineers of my age, just as Sane sir! In 70’s when real estate is like a toddler in the city this man was religiously teaching structures at COEP & then like a visionary he started structural consultancy for the builders in the city who were yet not exposed to technical side of the industry. And then it was never looking back for y s sane & asso , nearly 90% of the projects in 80’s were under the structural supervision of sir, such was his might.

Till then every passing out student from civil engineering used to dream about going to middle east for the job or join Govt service but come y s sane & asso & structural engg saw a huge demand for post graduation as joining y s sane was a glamorous thing for any pass out civil engg graduate, such was the aura sir has created. It’s very important aspect of sir’s achievement, keeping in mind the situation of real estate in those times. Usually it’s considered as a good academician rarely gets success as a good professional person or a consultant; because it’s been seen that too much of theory spoils your vision as a consultant which is a profession also! But sir used his mastery in academics perfectly to establish himself as a consultant who not only knows just the theory well but knows how to use it for making a good building too.

As the great Drucker says success of consultants depends on how he makes his employer happy & at peace, both money wise as well quality wise! Sane sir seems to get Ducker’s logic in his blood as then the raw real estate industry; first major task was to make the builders realize importance of a structural consultant. It wasn’t at all easy job as by no way real estate men were ever supposed to be giving respect to knowledge or men with knowledge. Even a basic consultant/professional like architect wasn’t being respected, in such times to make them realize importance of something like structures was a huge task! Sane sir not only become a structural consultant but he become like a family consultant for many real estate houses & it continued for second generations, like a family consultant. And he was very particular of having personal attention on each & every work as I myself remembers, he visiting the site for slab checking & climbing to lift room top slabs which are the highest point in the building!

Another important aspect of Snae sir was he never used to say no for any of the demand even the weirdest one from his clients. And it’s not just to please the client but he used to take those demands as a structural challenge & without touching safety aspect of the design. I have been part of many discussion on planning with architects, where we used to conclude the how to make it happen structurally  “Sir baghun ghetil” i.e. sane sir will take care of design part, lets draw it as per requirement! Jokes apart but in recent time I have come across advertize of a cement company where people have shown sleeping at peace in tall buildings & the background sound says “Lakho loag chain ki nind lete hai humari suraksha kawachme” & the name of cement flashes on screen! It means so many people can afford to sleep at peace in so many buildings because of the cement which has been used in making those building! So effective, same way I have seen builders feeling when they hand over the structural designing of a building in sane sir's hands!  And same is equally true for millions of the people residing in the flats which have been designed & supervised by Sane sir.

I think biggest achievement of sane sir isn’t in being a successful structural consultant with lots of clients but the comfort level which he has created in the minds of every person related to the building; may it be the builder himself or the architect whose design he is working on or even the site engineers & fitter which is the last link at site i.e. the person who actually works on the reinforcement! Everyone was always at ease & confident that Sane sir is there for any problem related to the site! Another important aspect is the accessibility, in today’s over packed schedule to reach to the consultant who is professionally successful is the biggest pain for any businessman but when there was no cell phones, yet entire clientele knew that at 4pm Sane sir will be available at his cabin & any one with problem related to site is welcome even without appointment!

He was a role model as not only as a consultant but a good human being. That’s something many of today’s so called successful professionals are forgetting. He used to entertain a big corporate real estate firm & a single building small timer with equal affection & integrity; a very rare attitude when you see today’s world. Never used to deny even the smallest of the work or request from a site engineer also to visit the site & guide him from the structural problem. And he never restricted his guidance to slab & beams but was always eager to apply his mind for any problem related to site work, even water proofing!

Not only the builders who were any way his clients but was on panel of many Govt organizations for structural audit & safety & yet continued to contribute for many social issues in the city. In all he was a complete package as a consultant human being & I think this is the biggest success he earned! Today Pune is known as cultural capitol of Maharashtra & its people like Sane sir who were the pillars of giving this very city that recognition & best tribute we can pay him is try to march on the path he has laid. Real estate was & is never known for its fair practices but if we make Sane sir like figures our idol then surely there is some home left for the industry is all I will say. I was lucky to be part of his work & been guided by him & whatever I have seen made me write this which I consider as my Shrdhanjali to him!! He has converted a small consulting firm in a corporate structural designing conglomerate & his successors are taking the ship ahead.Yet the real estate in Pune will be missing his fatherly advice sure here after. 

Ultimately it’s not the projects you completed or money you have earned makes you great, but the way people remembers you after you have gone makes you great & on that scale Sane sir stood much taller than the skyscrapers he have designed & supervised!

Sanjay Deshpande

Sanjeevani Dev.

MSEDCL (Power) Committee, Credai, Pune

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1 comment:

  1. Great information about sane sir. When the industry was in its infancy, such pioneering efforts in the right direction helped Pune grow with strength.


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