Visva-Bharati University Centenary Celebrations: Prime Minister Narendra Modi reminded people of Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore’s Gujarat connection, as he addressed the centenary celebrations of the Visva-Bharati University, Shantiniketan through video conferencing. In his 40-minute long speech, Prime Minister recited several lines of Tagore in Bangla, invoking the Bengali sentiments ahead of the crucial West Bengal assembly polls.
PM said that Gurudev’s brother Satyendranath Tagore, who was in Indian Civil Service, was posted in Ahmedabad and “Rabindranath Tagore used to visit Gujarat frequently. He wrote his two popular poems and a portion of Khudito Pashan (Kshudhita Pashan) during his stay in Gujarat.
“Guided by Gurudev(Rabindranath Tagore) Visva-Bharati presented a strong image of Indian nationalist sentiment during Independence. Gurudev wanted entire humanity to benefit from India’s spiritual awakening. Atmanirbhar Bharat vision is also a derivative of this sentiment,” he said.
Today we must remember the circumstances which led to the establishment of this university. It wasn’t just British rule but in the background, were our rich ideas & history of hundreds of years of movement, PM added.
The West Bengal governor and the Union education minister were also present during the ceremony.
Founded by Rabindranath Tagore in 1921, Visva-Bharati is the oldest central university in the country. Tagore, a Nobel laureate, is one of the most revered icons from West Bengal, a state which will go to the assembly polls in the first half of the next year.
In May 1951, Visva-Bharati was declared to be a Central University and an institution of national importance” by an Act of Parliament, the PMO noted. The university followed the pedagogy devised by Tagore, though gradually it evolved in the format in which modern universities developed elsewhere.
The prime minister is the chancellor of the university.