VARANASI : It was a momentous occasion as Banaras Hindu University welcomed the first batch of students of M.A. Hindu Studies. The postgraduate programme is first such course in India offered by any university in the country. Rector Prof. V. K. Shukla inaugurated the course during a programme organized in hybrid mode. He said that the course is an inter-disciplinary programme, which was in line with New Education Policy 2020. He added that it was a matter of great pride for Banaras Hindu University that the course is being conducted at Bharat Adhyayan Kendra, a centre established in the centenary year of the university. Prof. Shukla said that the beginning of this course at this center symbolizes innovation which is the need of the hour. He reiterated that the course will make the world aware of many unknown aspects of Hindu Dharma and help in taking its teachings to more people.

Addressing the programme, Dr. Vijay Shankar Shukla, Director, Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts, underlined the need to have such a course on Hindu Studies. He said the idea behind this goes back to 18th century scholar Pt. Ganganath Jha and travels through time to Mahamana, however, the link was broken for some reasons. But, with the initiation of this course the goal appears to have been achieved.

Prof. Kamlesh Dutt Tripathi, Chancellor, Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalaya, Wardha, and Centenary Chair Professor, Bharat Adhyayan Kendra, who chaired the programme, underlined the values and mantra of unity that are core to the Hindu Dharma. He added that one cannot separate Hindu Dharma from being constantly logical and scientific.

Prof. Malini Awasthi, Centenary Chair Professor, Bharat Adhyayan Kendra, called upon the scholars to come forward and preserve the Sanatana Parampara. Centenary Chair Professor Prof. Rakesh Upadhyaya said the course was important for building the Sanatana life values. Prof. Yugal Kishore Mishra spoke about the scientific aspect of Gayatri Mantra.

Prof. Sadashiv Kumar Dwivedi, Coordinator, Bharat Adhyayan Kendra, presented a brief structure of the course. All the newly admitted students of the course, centenary visiting fellows of the Centre and scholars from all over the country joined the programme in hybrid mode. The programme concluded with National Anthem.

The course under Faculty of Arts will be conducted at Bharat Adhyayan Kendra in collaboration with Department of Philosophy and Religion, Department of Sanskrit and Department of Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archeology. In total 45 students have been admitted to the course of which one is a foreign student.

Lectures in First Week

The first week’s time table comprises lectures on “Evolution of Hindu Dharma”, “What is Hindu Studies”, “The antiquity and the meaning of the term Hindu”, “Indian Epistemology & Metaphysics”, “Hindu of Foreign Origin” & “Hinduism & Brahmanism”.

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