Dibrugarh University handed degrees to some 12,823 students during the 15th convocation on Saturday. The students discarded the conventional robes and attended the occasion dressed in their traditional outfits to showcase and celebrate the cultural diversity of the State.
Chancellor of Dibrugarh University and Governor of Assam, PB Acharya gave away the degrees. Eminent scholars, Professor Nagen Saikia and Professor Achyuta Samanta (in absentia) were conferred the degrees of D Litt (honoris causa) for their outstanding contribution to the fields of Academics, Literature and Public Life.
Professor Saikia, a former Rajya Sabha member, a renowned Assamese litterateur, a retired faculty of the Department of Assamese, Dibrugarh University, a journalist and a former president of the Assam Sahitya Sabha received the Sahitya Akademi award.
Professor Achyuta Samanta, a Gusi laureate and a person of high repute has made outstanding contributions in school, higher, professional, and health education by establishing the globally visible Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT) – a multi-disciplinary University, Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS), KIIT International School (KIS) and Kalinga Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS). He has also been bestowed with a series of national and international awards and honours for his achievements.
The Chancellor congratulated the Dibrugarh University and appreciated them for bringing back the traditional dress code and discarding the western conventional coat. “The change in the garb from a robe to a traditional Indian one is indeed a laudatory step. It will also inspire the cottage and handloom industry of Assam as the very gesture is to celebrate our rich textile designs and respect our diversity. The idea of the change in garb from a western one to one which is Indian should serve as a metaphor for a much needed re-hauling of the curricula of our universities to one which values, prioritizes and respects the idea of India, its civilizational ethos and diversity,” he said.
The Chancellor also appreciated the decision of the Dibrugarh University to open courses on Bodo, Mising and Deuri languages.
Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, spoke about his vision to come up with a 15-year plan to study, discuss and consult about the right approach to education considering the local resources of the region and employability factors. “We must first discover our strength, deficiencies, resources, lacunas etc., to prepare methodically the appropriate education policies. We have to make the graduating students employable,” he said.
The convocation address was delivered by Dr Justice Mukundakam Sharma, Chancellor of Lal Bahadur Shastri Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha, New Delhi and chief guest of the convocation. On educational institutions, Dr Sharma said that imparting world class education is the need of the hour through more world class institutions like IITs and IIMs. “The very purpose of the educational institutions is to create an environment wherein different subjects/disciplines are not merely learnt but also researched, criticized, and reformed. The training of students should be directed not only towards equipping them to solve the real world problems but also play an active role in the society,” he pointed out.