Sunday, May 9, 2010

Santiniketan, Tagore's dream, breathing its last?

In the twilight years of his life, Rabindranath Tagore was an extremely worried man. The future of Visva Bharati — the most precious of his creative pursuits — was at stake.

The three men to whom he revealed his thoughts — Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and Subhas Chandra Bose — assured him that his dream would be realized. On the poet's 150th birth anniversary, however, Santiniketan has lost sight of its founder's original ideals.

Sixty-nine years after his death, Visva Bharati has neither proved to be a pathmaker in educational experimentation nor does it remain a centre of excellence and achievement. A university that can boast of Indira Gandhi, Satyajit Ray and Amartya Sen among its illustrious alumni, Visva Bharati is nothing more than a "glorified Bolpur college" today, its universal flavour being a thing of the past. The university, which once attracted litterateurs, thinkers, philosophers, economists and artists from far and wide now rarely draws brilliant teachers, even as visiting faculty.

Full report here Times of India 

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