Ravenshaw launches Kabi Katha Poetry recitation in honour of first V-C
Ravenshaw University announced the launch of a grand annual poetry recitation event named “Kabi Katha (The Poet and his Poetry) in honour of the First Vice-Chancellor of Ravenshaw University and Poet Par Excellence Sri Devdas Chhotray. The announcement was made on the eve of the 65th birthday of the poet and administrator on November 25, 2011.
Students of the University who write poetry will be warmly invited to recite three poems, written by themselves, in front of a hall-packed audience.
Students can recite their works in Oriya, English or Hindi. The recitations will be recorded for transmission in the ‘Literati’ programme on Ravenshaw Radio 90.4 MHz, Odisha’s first and only campus community radio station. Moreover, an audio CD of the best 25 recitations will be produced and released by Ravenshaw Radio. Besides, two of the best poems recited by the student will be published in book form which will also be available in the market.
This will be a grand annual event in honour of the first Vice-Chancellor, who has also been a great source of inspiration to our students who have a flair for creative writing.
Fifth Commemoration Day Celebrations 2011
The Fifth Commemoration Day celebrations were held in a grand way in the campus. There was a week long of festivities, starting on November 9 leading to the Commemoration Day on November 15.
On November 9, the celebration started with the inauguration of Advanced Organic Chemistry Laboratory, Analytical Chemistry Laboratory and PG Seminar Library of the Chemistry Department in collaboration with Dr. Gokulananda Mohapatra Foundation. Dr. Omkar Nath Mohanty, former Vice Chancellor of BPUT inaugurated the laboratories and the library.
On November 11, the huge Ravenshaw Amphitheatre was inaugurated by Hon’ble Rajya Sabha MP Sri Pyarimohan Mohapatra. Cultural programmes by Ravenshaw Choir and other students followed the inauguration.
On November 12, the renovated Kanika Library was inaugurated by Hon’ble Chief Minister Sri Naveen Patnaik. He also laid the Foundation Stone of a girls’ and a boys’ hostel inside the campus.
On November 13, eminent journalist and author, and Executive Director, India Today, Mr. M.J. Akbar delivered the Sixth Ravenshaw Memorial Lecture in the Heritage Hall. The subject of the lecture is 'The Idea of India: A Template of Modernity.' He also inaugurated an exhibition of photographs on Ravenshaw taken by students in the Art Gallery. In the morning, a Friendly Cricket Match between old boys and current students of Ravenshaw University was held in the University playground.
On November 14, the Regional Centre of ICCR (located inside Ravenshaw campus) presented a Sarod Recital under Horizon Series by eminent artiste Sri Sura Ranjan Mukhopadhyay in the Heritage Hall as a commemoration tribute.
The Fifth Commemoration Day was observed on November 15. Eminent author Dr. Sitakant Mahapatra delivered the Commemoration Day Address in the Heritage Hall. The subject of his lecture was 'Roots and Wings: Predicament of the Modern Writer.' The lecture was followed by a music concert at the Ravenshaw Amphitheatre with eminent folk singer Teejan Bai's performance enacting tales from the Mahabharata.
Lecture in Honour of Sri Devdas Chhotray
On behalf of School of Social Sciences and Department of JMC , a Lecture was held in Honour of the first Vice-Chancellor of Ravenshaw University Mr. Devdas Chhotray on the topic "Media History: Colonial Discourse and Microwave Politics in India, 1924-47". The lecture was delivered at the Heritage Hall on 16 November 2011 at 2.30 PM. Prof. Biswajit Das, Director, Centre for Culture, Media and Governance, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi.
Rock Music Concert by Sweet Poison
College band Sweet Poison rocked the Heritage Hall with their maiden performance on October 17, 2011 (Monday). Hundreds of students attended and enjoyed the rock music concert. The band belted out some of the famous English songs along with some of their highly original compositions and created euphoria among the audience. The concert was a huge success.
Prior to the concert, the Ravenshaw Choir sang two chorus compositions, "Ravenshaw Ravenshaw" written by Hon'ble VC Mr. Devdas Chhotray and composed by Om Prakash Mohanty, and the evergreen "Katha Thila Tume", written and composed by the late legendary Akshaya Mohanty.
Extramural Lecture by Mr. Vivek Pattanayak
Mr. Vivek Pattanayak, IAS (Retd.), Ex-Chairman of OPSC and Former Director, International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) delivered an extramural lecture on 13 October 2011 at 4 pm in the PLT. He spoke on the topic "Human Rights: The Changing Dimensions".
Creative Writing Workshop
A series of workshops on Creative Writing was inaugurated on September 17, 2011 by Writer-in-Residence of Ravenshaw University, Prof. Soubhagya Kumar Mishra. Being held under the aegis of the Department of English, the unique workshop will continue till December 20, 2011. Two sessions are being held every week on Tuesdays and Saturdays in the department.
Eminent poets and writers such as Prof. Binapani Mohanty, Sri Saroj Mohanty (Editor, Jhankar), Sri Tarun Kanti Rout (Programme Executive, All India Radio), Sri Dipak Samantaray (Programme Executive, All India Radio) and faculty of the department, HOD Prof. Dipti Ranjan Pattanaik and Prof. Basant Kumar Tripathy are the workshop resource persons.
The workshop is open to students as well as faculty of all departments. The students who are participating in the workshop have submitted samples of their writings and these are being evaluated and discussed by the resource persons, said coordinator of the workshop and lecturer in English, Dr.Urmishree Bedamatta.
Extramural Lecture by Satish Jha
Noted writer, editor, researcher, international corporate executive and social entrepreneur Satish Jha delivered an extramural lecture on the topic "Transforming India's Education" on September 16, 2011 in the Heritage Hall of the University. Hundreds of students and faculty listened to the lecture with rapt attention. Known for One Laptop per Child Project, Jha is a former editor with The Times of India and The Indian Express. He has worked at the intersection of technology and management both in global markets and the social space.
Extramural Lecture by Jatin Das
Eminent painter Dr. Jatin Das delivered an Extramural Lecture on September 9, 2011 at the Heritage Hall of the University. He spoke on the topic ‘Art is the Base of Life’. Many students and faculty members attended the intellectually stimulating lecture.
Cuttack: Ravenshaw University won the Inter-University RTI debate competition for the third consecutive time. Nineteen students from ten universities participated in the 4th Inter-University RTI Debate Competition held on December 3, 2010 in PLT. Swayamshree Mishra of BA Final Year (Sociology Hons) bagged the first prize this year also and retained the running shield of the debate competition for three times in a row. All students, teachers and participants congratulated Swayamshree for her stupendous success. The topic for the 4th Inter-University RTI debate competition was ‘Secrecy is Inherently Anti-Democratic’. Chief Information Commissioner, Government of India, Sri A.N. Tiwari, IAS graced the occasion as one of the judges. While Swayamshree Mishra of the University bagged the first prize retaining the RTI Running Shield, Jubin Prasad of National Law University, Cuttack and Sthitipragnya Das of Fakir Mohan University, Balasore won the second and third prizes respectively. The first, second and third prize winners won cash prizes of Rs. 5,000, Rs. 3,000 and Rs. 2,000 respectively.
NSS observes ‘World AIDS Day’ and 'Communal Harmony and Flag Day Week'
Extra-mural lecture by Prof. M C Dash
Prof. Madhav Chandra Dash, former VC Sambalpur University and former Chairman, Orissa State Pollution Control Board (OSPCB) delivered an extra-mural lecture on Saturday (September 25, 2010) at CLT. He spoke on the topic, "Carbon-budgeting for Orissa".
Ravenshavians spread green message on NSS Day
Cuttack (September 24, 2010): Students of Ravenshaw University observed the National Service Scheme (NSS) Day in a unique way by clearing polythene waste and refuse sacks and bags littered all over the campus. They also displayed placards and banners and distributed leaflets spreading the message of clean and green environment. They created awareness on environmental issues by raising slogans like ‘Say no to polythene’, ‘Avoid plastics, save life’, etc. Reader in geography and programme coordinator of NSS unit of RavenshawUniversity, Dr Pritirekha Daspattanayak coordinated the event. Programme officers of the unit, readers in economics Dr Manoj Das and Dr Lipishree Ray were also present on the occasion. The NSS Day is observed on September 24 every year. NSS is a permanent youth programme under the Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports since 1969. NSS is the largest voluntary social organisation in the world which believes in voluntary services by the college students taking part in community. The NSS provided a common platform to students to help the society which also helps in the development of a positive attitude.
Padmashri Sunil Kothari lectures on Indian dance
Internationally renowned dance scholar, author, historian and critic, Padmashri Dr. Sunil Kothari delivered an extra-mural lecture at Ravenshaw University here on September 9, 2010.
He gave an illustrated talk on ‘New Directions in Indian Dance’ and showed excerpts of choreographic works of leading works of eminent dancers of India like Ananda Shankar and others and also from abroad, including dances from Bollywood films.
Dr Kothari has held several prestigious positions like Uday Shankar Professor and Head, Department of Dance, Rabindra Bharati University, Prof and Dean School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Visiting Professor, New York University, Fulbright Professor, Georgia University, etc. Dr Kothari has authored more than 15 definitive works on Indian classical dances.
Many students and faculty of the University attended the lecture with rapt attention and learnt about the finer aspects of Indian dance.
It was really an enlightening lecture. I feel myself privileged to come into contact with Dr Kothari and enjoyed every bit of his illuminating audio-visual demonstration. He shared his rare collection of DVDs on Indian dance with us, said reader in geology, Dr. Somnath Khaoash. He is indeed a rare personality and I am deeply moved by his down-to-earth nature despite all his erudition and accomplishments, he added.
Due to noble efforts of our VC Mr. Devdas Chhotray, the legacy of extramural lectures at Ravenshaw has been revived. We feel ourselves rewarded to come into direct contact with such great personalities and hear from them. Such lectures are a boon to students as well as faculty members of the University, said professor and HOD of political science, Dr. Niranjan Barik.
Flute maestro Chaurasia pays musical tribute to late Sikander Alam
Cuttack: Internationally acclaimed flautist Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia paid tribute to departed singer Sikander Alam who passed away recently, in a classical music concert held at the Heritage Hall in Ravenshaw University here on Monday under the aegis of Society for Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth (SPIC MACAY). After paying deep obeisance to the great singer and lamenting his absence in the concert, he started his recital with a musical composition dedicated to late Sikander Alam, who was his close friend and colleague at All India Radio, Cuttack.
He continued his hour-long recital with a composition in Raag Bhupali followed by a pahadi dhun. He was accompanied on the tabla by Pandit Subhankar Banerjee and supported on the flute by two of his front-ranking students.
Pandit Chaurasia’s concert was a historic one as he performed in Cuttack after several years. The cultural city of Cuttack is the cradle of his professional career where he was a staff musician at All India Radio in the 1960s and worked for many years here before moving to Mumbai. He has played for stalwarts of Odia music industry like Balkrushna Dash, Bhubaneswar Mishra, Akshaya Mohanty, Sikander Alam and many other innumerable Odia songs, modern and devotional, recorded for All India Radio, Cuttack and His Master’s Voice (HMV), now Saregama.
Hundreds of students, faculty members, music lovers, eminent citizens and connoisseurs of art and culture including vice-chancellor, Ravenshaw University Devdas Chhotray, higher education, culture and tourism minister Debi Prasad Mishra and several other dignitaries attended the classical music concert.
Pandit Chaurasia however lamented the declining popularity of classical music among the youth. He further lamented over the fact that All India Radio, Cuttack is airing only modern songs these days oblivious of its glorious cultural heritage. He fondly recalled his days when he used to rehearse for recordings at the erstwhile Ravenshaw College. At the end of his concert, he sought the help of the audience to remind him of some old non-film Odia songs, especially Odissi, chhanda, champu and timeless radio songs, and also played a couple of them. Before concluding his spellbinding performance, he took the audience by surprise and amusement by playing the famous Christmas song, Jingle Bells on his flute. He promised the audience to come back again and play some of their favourite Odia songs.
It may be noted that the concert was held as an overture to the 26th National Convention of SPIC MACAY scheduled to be held in Ravenshaw University in May 2011. The concert was the first event under the curtain raiser programme ahead of the ensuing weeklong convention and similar concerts by renowned musicians will take place every month till May next year, University sources said.
Regarded as a rare combination of innovator and traditionalist, Pandit Chaurasia has collaborated with several western musicians, including John McLaughlin, Yehudi Menuhin and Jan Garbarek, and has also composed hit music for a number of Hindi films like Chandni and Darr with santoor maestro Shiv Kumar Sharma. He has won a number of prestigious awards including the Sangeet Natak Akademi (1984), Konark Samman (1992), Padma Bhushan (1992), Yash Bharati Samman (1994), Padma Vibhushan (2000) and Akshaya Samman (2009).
Ravenshavians attune to evening romantic raga on strings
Cuttack (July 26, 2010): Renowned exponent of classical guitar, Dr Kamala Shankar performed at the prestigious Heritage Hall of Ravenshaw University here on Thursday evening under the aegis of Society for Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth (SPIC MACAY).
The musical evening began with a befitting introduction by lecturer in zoology, Dr Lekhasri Samantsinghar. Before beginning the recital, Dr Shankar introduced her improvised Shankar Guitar to the audience and explained the salient features of the string instrument. “My instrument is made from a single block of wood, with thicker walls and no sound hole. It has four melody strings, four chikari or rhythmic strings and 12 taraf or sympathetic strings,” she described.
She chose the evening romantic raga Raag Behag for the performance and explained the scales, aroha (ascending), avaroha (descending) and various nuances of the melodious raga. She began her recital with an alaap (gradual exposition) followed by compositions set to vilambit and madhya teen taal (sixteen beat cycle) and jhala (fast rhythmic passages). She continued her spellbinding recital with a famous Benarasi dadra, Mope daro na rang giridhari set to dadra taal (six beat cycle). She concluded her recital with a well-known Ram bhajan, Jinke man me siyaram base. At the request of students, she also presented a couple of film compositions based on the romantic Raag Behag. She was accompanied on the tabla by noted tabla player of Odisha, Umesh Chandra Kar. At the end, Dr Shankar replied to some questions raised by the audience comprising of hundreds of students, faculty members, music lovers and connoisseurs of art and culture.
Dr Shankar is the first female guitarist to have enthralled the world through her immaculate and melodious rendition of Indian classical music. She attracted world attention by converting the western Hawaiian Guitar to Shankar Guitar with overtones of the classical Veena. Born in Tanjore district of Tamil Nadu, Dr Shankar’s musical career started with training in vocal music by her mother at the age of six. She has played a vital role in introducing the western guitar into Hindustani instrumental music. She has received many prestigious awards and has performed all over the world. She is also a regular performer on All India Radio and Doordarshan as an A grade artist. She belongs to an elite and exclusive class of musicians who have Masters in Science and Doctorate in Music from Banaras Hindu University (BHU).
The Consecration Ceremony (Bhumi Puja) for the much-ambitious Ravenshaw Convention Centre (RCC) was held recently in the campus behind Commerce Block. The marvellous structure christened "Seven Pillars of Wisdom" will come up in a year.
Artists join amateurs to paint nature
Nature and art go hand in hand. These days when environmental degradation and global warming are the threats looming large on earth, a group of ace painters of the State and students of various age groups came together under one roof to create awareness on the problems through art.
The platform was ‘Dhara’, an art workshop for creating awareness among people towards environment, organised by Cuttack-based social organisation The Green Projects at Kanika Library of Ravenshaw University on February 27, 2010. Splash of colours with a cause ruled the event.
While on one side of the venue were kids with human forms, flowers and other elements from the nature to gel with the given theme, the other side had canvases of painters like Prafulla Mohanti, J P Das, Byomkesh Mohanty, Siba Panigrahi and Ranjit Parija reflecting life amid spectres of doom and disaster.
The workshop reflected different styles and techniques used by the participating artists. The moods and themes also varied ranging from cheerful and relaxed to grim or stern.
All the five artists explored various dimensions of nature, human mind and its synchrony with the physical body. While Siba Panigrahi journeyed into the caravan of dreams and hopes of a couple in the spring, recreating an ambience that is fairy tale like and an imagery that is folksy in character, Prafulla Mohanti’s work was marked by compositional elegance. Brimming with earthy colours, his paintings filled with sharp, circular strokes, created an eye-catching impression. The red colour was placed in the centre, representing life, with loads of greens around signifying the green cover which he said “needs to be protected for humans to survive.” J P Das’s ‘Vanished Civilisation and Homo sapiens’ depicted life when global warming has completely taken its toll on the civilisation.
Dry and dark colours ruled the canvas with no shades of green. Skeletal remains of animals and dried up river beds and trees reflected the grim scenario. He also put two flattened watches in his frame signifying the uselessness of time. Similarly, Byomkesh Mohanty and Ranjit Parija worked on abstract themes to show the effect of environmental degradation.
Though amateurs, the children through their visual language experimented on different topics related to the theme. Depleting green cover, industrial pollution, global warming were some of the subjects. While a nine-year-old Sannidhya Nanda drew leafless tress surrounding a village, 20-year-old Devjani Bhuyan showed how toxic wastes from industries are polluting earth.
The juxtaposition of their works within the confines of the library space overwhelmed the viewers. The colours were rich, animated, resonant, vibrant and dazzling, the figures distorted, exaggerated and the technique overtly inventive, innovative and different. All their paintings were insightful and perceptive, evolved through personal experiences and memories. (Source: The New Indian Express)
Manoj Das delivers Fourth Ravenshaw Memorial Lecture
One of India’s finest writers of fiction, eminent thinker, philosopher, essayist nonpareil, and Ravenshavian extraordinary, Manoj Das delivered the Fourth Ravenshaw Memorial Lecture-2010 on 20 and 22 March 2010 at the historic Heritage Hall of Ravenshaw University. He delivered the lecture in two parts, in English and Oriya.
The subject of his English lecture on 20 March was The Riddle of Sphinx (Its Relevance in our Time in Regard to Life and Death) and that of his Oriya lecture on 22 March was Ajira Jibanare Biswas O Bandhuta (Reflections on the Changing Concepts of Values in our Time). A large number of students, faculty and intellectuals attended the lecture and interacted with the renowned writer.
'Foster a culture of invention and creativity'
Eminent scientist and the Associate Director of Research for Material Science and Component Technology, US Naval Research Laboratory, Washington DC, Dr Bhakta B Rath called upon students and graduates to foster a culture of invention, innovation, collaboration and creativity to shape the future.
Delivering the commencement speech at the third Convocation of Ravenshaw University here, he said that the future was set to throw up immense challenges driven by societal needs such as alternate energy sources, water and environment, disease, education, counterterrorism and war among others.
“There is a lot of work to be done and that falls on you, the future of the state”.
He said that in the next 25 to 30 years there may be significant inventions and innovations which would script new course for life on the planet. Some of the predicted transformational technologies are computers with cognitive systems to interact with humans using natural language and respond to emotions, embedded miniature computers in the human system to communicate and report chemical imbalances in the body and advanced energy storage technologies.
Oceans will be the huge frontier to meet a major chunk of societal needs.
Clean water technologies will be developed to enable faster, energy efficient treatment of fresh water, waste water and desalinisation of sea water for use in domestic, agricultural and industrial purposes.
In vivo devices will monitor drug requirements and provide controlled release, DNA technology will eliminate diseases like diabetes, cancer, haemophilia, etc. And, the students and graduates of today would spearhead such inventions, Dr Rath said.
Chancellor and Governor Murlidhar Chandrakant Bhandare urged the students to transform the possibilities into opportunities. “Let the books read here, lessons taught, experiments done and researches carried out here be not a repository of dead printed pages and of routine exercises.
Let them be the source of simulation and progress, he said.
Vice-Chancellor Devdas Chhotray detailed the strides RavenshawUniversity has taken since its commencement in November 2006.
From expanding and improving the physical infrastructure to developing the academic and co-curricular aspects, concerted efforts are being made to elevate the institution to one of the best in the country, he said.
The University conferred Honorary Doctor of Law on noted lawyer Pavani Prameswara Rao, Doctor of Literature on former director of All India Radio, Cuttack, PV Krishnamoorthy, freedom fighter Prof Chittaranjan Das, painters Prafulla Mohanti and Jatin Das and Doctor of Science on Dr Bhakta B Rath this year.
Gold medals and degrees were given away to the passing out students in the UG and PG streams.
Ravenshaw Heritage Hall resonates with unison of strings
Leading exponent of Hindustani classical music, Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt and his son Salil Bhatt performed on the Mohan Veena (an innovation of the slide guitar) and Satwik Veena respectively at the Heritage Hall of Ravenshaw University on February 22. The concert was held under the aegis of Society for Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth (SPIC MACAY). The musical evening started with an introductory lecture on Indian classical music by Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt. He began his Mohan Veena recital with an alaap in Raag Behag, an evening raga. His son Salil Bhatt joined him in the second part of the concert and both of them struck a jugalbandi in late evening raga, Raag Maru Behag in Vilambit and Drut Gat set to Teen Taal with befitting tabla accompaniment by Akram Khan. At the end, Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt interacted with the audience in a question-answer session and explained the quintessence of Indian classical music. Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt is a recipient of the prestigious Grammy Award in 1994, Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1998 and the Padma Shri in 2002. Being the foremost disciple of Pandit Ravi Shankar, Panditji belongs to that elite body of musicians which traces its origin to the Mughal emperor Akbar's court musician Tansen and his guru Swami Haridas. Apart from being a star performer on stage, he has a number of studio and live recordings to his credit which have achieved phenomenal success and outstanding sales records.
Ravenshavians excel at NSS camp
Students of RavenshawUniversity were adjudged as the 'Best Disciplined Team' and RavenshawUniversity was declared as the 'BestUniversity' at the 'State Level Integration Camp' organised by National Service Scheme (NSS) and Directorate of Continuing Education (DCE), UtkalUniversity at Bhubaneswar from February 15 to 21. Ravenshavians also bagged 14 certificates of merit for their glorious achievements. Coordinator Dr. Priti Rekha Das Patnaik and programme officer Dr. Alekha Kumar Sutar of RavenshawUniversity accompanied and guided the group to the integration camp. Dr. Alekh Sutar, Lecturer in Chemistry, RavenshawUniversity was also felicitated for his dedication and service. The students who represented RavenshawUniversity are Krishna Kasturika of B.Com. final year (Management Hons.), Siddharth Shekhar of B.Sc. final year (ITM), Swadhin Behera of B.A. second year (Geography Hons.), Sweta Mukherjee of B.A. second year (Geography Hons.) and Asha Swain of B.Sc. first year (Zoology Hons.). Krishna Kasturika was the group leader. The students earned huge appreciation for their dedicated service. Nine universities including 34 colleges participated in the camp coordinated by Dr. Surekha Sundari Swain of UtkalUniversity.
Third inter-university RTI debate competition held at Ravenshaw University
Ravenshavians sweep Inter-varsity RTI debate
Cuttack: Students of Ravenshaw University swept the 3rd Inter-University RTI debate competition held at Physics Lecture Theatre in the University on December 12, 2009 by bagging the first and third prizes. The topic of the debate was ‘Who Wants Information: Ignorance is Bliss’. Information Commissioner, Satyananda Mishra, former DG Gopal Nanda and eminent RTI activist Dr. Bhagawan Prakash graced the occasion as judges.
Fifteen students from ten universities of the State participated in the RTI debate competition. Puspanjali Panda of College of Veterinary Sciences and Animal Husbandry, OUAT, Bhubaneswar and Swayamshree Mishra, Ravenshaw University, Cuttack bagged the first prize jointly and won the RTI Running Shield and a cash prize of Rs. 5,000. Bhumika Mallick of National Law University, Cuttack bagged the second prize with a cash award of Rs. 3,000 and Sampad Patnaik of Ravenshaw University, Cuttack bagged the third prize with a cash award of Rs. 2,000.
Earlier, in the first week of December, the prestigious Borasambar Debate, which was reinstituted by Vice-Chancellor Mr. Devdas Chhotray after decades of discontinuance, was held at the Heritage Hall of the University on the topic, ‘God is a Woman’. While Sampad Patnaik, B.A. (English Hons.) and Swayamshree Mishra, B.A. (Sociology Hons.), who also excelled in the 3rd Inter-University RTI debate competition, bagged the joint first prize, Krishna Kasturika, B.Com. (Management Hons.) and Debamitra Sen, M.Sc. (Mathematics) bagged the joint second prize.
The origin of the prestigious Borasambar Debate can be traced back to 1934, two years before the State became a separate province. Nilamani Senapati, one of the few Oriya ICS officers was posted as deputy commissioner of Sambalpur district. Borasambar was then a small principality of about 1,000 square miles in Gandhamardan hills. When Senapati was transferred to Cuttack, he was presented with Rs. 600 as parting gift by the Raja of Borasambar Estate, Rajendra Singh Bariah. Senapati then donated the amount to Ravenshaw College to create an endowment for awarding prize to the best English debater.
Among the winners of the prestigious debate are luminaries like Sriram Chandra Dash, Prafulla K Pati, A.N. Tiwary, Nilakanth Rath, S.K. Palit, P.C. Hota, Sarat Kar, D.K. Ray and the present Vice-Chancellor Mr. Devdas Chhotary himself in 1963.
National Education Day observed in RU
The National Education Day was observed in Ravenshaw University on November 11, 2009 on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, a great freedom fighter and the first Union Minister of Education. Prof. Bimalendu Mohanty, an eminent educationist and former Vice-Chancellor of Utkal University of Culture was the chief guest on the occasion. Dr. Sachindra Raul, Dean, Students' Welfare, Ravenshaw University presided over the meeting. Prof. Mohanty highlighted the contribution of Maulana Azad and threw light on different aspects of Higher Education in the present scenario.
Essay and debate competitions were organised among the students as part of the celebration. The winners of the competitions were awarded trophies in the function.
While Dr. Soma Chand, Reader in History introduced the guests, the meeting came to an end with vote of thanks by Dr. Sasmita Tripathy, the co-ordinator of the celebration.
Ravenshaw University observes Third Commemoration Day
Cuttack: Ravenshaw University celebrated its ‘Third Commemoration Day’ with much pomp and enthusiasm on November 15, 2009.
Dr. Kiran Seth, Professor in Mechanical Engineering, IIT Delhi and founder of Society for Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth (SPIC MACAY), delivered the commemoration day address at the open air stage in the University campus. He spoke on the subject, ‘Our Core Competence’.
The lecture was followed by cultural programmes by distinguished artistes. 102-year-old noted Hindustani classical exponent Ustad Abdul Rashid Khan performed Hindustani Vocal followed by Gotipua dance by artistes of Konark Natya Mandap. Ustad Abdul Rashid Khan and renowned Odissi teacher Guru Gangadhar Pradhan were felicitated on the occasion for their priceless contribution to Indian music and dance respectively.
On this occasion, the Science Faculty of the University held an exhibition which was open to students as well as public. A friendly cricket match was also played on the same day between the old boys and the current players in the University playground.
The famous Ravenshaw College, the glory of Orissa, became a Unitary University exactly three years ago on November 15, 2006 when former Bihar cadre IAS officer Mr. Devdas Chhotray joined it as its first Vice-Chancellor following the notification issued by the State Government. From an autonomous college to the status of a Unitary University, the century-old institution got its due status after a long wait.
Higher Education Task Force meets at Ravenshaw University
Cuttack: Following successful consultations held at Sambalpur, Jeypore and Berhampur, the fourth regional consultation of the Higher Education Taskforce constituted by the Government of Orissa under the chairmanship of Padmabhusan Prof (Dr) Trilochan Pradhan was hosted by Ravenshaw University.
The consultation was attended by a galaxy of educationists, academicians, educational administrators, people’s representatives and members of civil societies. The meeting was presided over by Vice-Chancellor of Ravenshaw University Devdas Chhotray while Prof Pradhan conducted the deliberations. Minister of Higher Education Debiprasad Mishra, Commissioner-cum-Secretary of Higher Education Madhusudan Padhi, Cuttack MP Bhartruhari Mahtab and Banki MLA Prabhat Ranjan Tripathy were in attendance as guests. Among the audience were former minister and educationist Trilochan Kanungo and eminent former bureaucrat Vivek Patnaik, who participated in the deliberations. Executive Director of Human Development Foundation (HDF) and Secretary to the Task Force were also present.
Following a presentation about the background to the Task Force by Dr Dhanada Kanta Mishra of HDF, which is providing secretarial services to the task force, Prof Binayak Rath made a comprehensive presentation giving wide-ranging ideas for reforming the existing university system in particular reference to Utkal University. The key recommendations made by a University-level group formed by the Vice-Chancellor for the purpose included restructuring the university into several smaller universities as per the recommendation of the Knowledge Commission for better management and administration. Other suggestions included reforming the University statutes and accounts procedure, curbing political interference on campus, providing greater autonomy, etc.
The Minister of Higher Education discussed the determination of the Government to see higher education as a vibrant growing sector so that the State can stay abreast of the developments at the national as well as international level. Mahtab called for introspection on the role of higher education in overall development of the State and urged the task force to keep the State’s interest uppermost while deliberating on the draft policy and perspective plans. Padhi urged the gathering to give practical and implementable ideas to improve the situation in higher education. Prabhat Ranjan Tripathy also addressed the gathering.
Prof. Trilochan Pradhan in his key note addressed touched on various aspects of the higher education scenario at the national and international level. Drawing from his vast experience in academics and higher education, he dwelt at length on the need for reforms and fast growth to catch up with rest of the world.
Among the participants, Trilochan Kanungo drew the attention of the task force to the predicament of managing higher secondary (+2) education and called for sending it back to schools. Vivek Patnaik emphasized on employability as one of the major objectives of higher education and drew attention on education in demand-based areas such as agriculture, international law, etc. Rabi Patra presented the genuine grievances of teaching community and called for urgent attention to address the same.
ICCR hosts Chocquibtown musical band
ICCR’s Regional Centre located on the campus of Ravenshaw University hosted a musical programme by the popular Columbia-based band, “Chocquibtown” on 20th October, 2009 (Tuesday).
The unique musical event was held in the auditorium of Xavier Institute of Management, Bhubaneswar (XIMB). The event was a part of the celebrations of 50 years of bilateral relations between India and Colombia. The Embassy of Colombia, New Delhi in collaboration with ICCR organized the event in Bhubaneswar.
The concert was ICCR’s first major cultural event for the State after the formal inauguration of its Orissa Chapter on the Ravenshaw University campus in Cuttack. The Chapter has been hosting cultural events under ICCR’s ‘Horizon Series’ every month in Cuttack and Bhubaneswar.
The Colombian Hip-Hop and Salsa band was nominated for the prestigious Grammy Award for the year 2009. Ambassador of Colombia in India, Juan Alfredo Pinto Saavedra visited the State and attended the show which turned out to be a huge success.
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