Over 721 academicians and experts including 51 Vice Chancellors of various central and state universities attended a two-day workshop organised by the RSS over the weekend hosted in the national capital.
The idea behind the event, as its all India organiser told press, was to brainstorm over how to make Indian education more oriented towards 'Bharatiya perspectives.'
According to the organisers the primary objective of the workshop was to create 'an academic ecosystem from Bharatiya perspectives' out of the government's ambit.
In the audience, among other senior academics of various institutions, was chairperson of the Indian Council of Historical Research chairman Y Sudershan Rao. Apart from Bhagwat senior RSS functionaries Sahkarvayah Krishna Gopal and Suresh Soni were present as well.
Speaking to an audience of senior academics, many of who hold senior chairs at several state and central universities of the country, Bhagwat spoke about “non-governmental and autonomous Indic thinking,' and said, 'This is not the alternative but the real attempt to develop a Bharatiya perspective.”
Speaking to the press, J Nandakumar, who heads Pranja Pravah, said there have been many education commission reports – right from Dr. S. Radhakrishnan to DS Kothari commission all which had stressed on one major point - absence of 'Indian-ness from our education system.'
'Our education was marked with the absence of Indian-ness. The centre of gravity of our education system shifted towards the west,” he said. Nandakumar said that the two day event was held to allow the academics to brainstorm on “how to bring the centre of gravity back to Indic thinking given that the main weakness of our system is that it is western”.
He called this task an urgent one, which needs to be pursued without any government interference.
“This is not the government work because our system of education was independent of government control. There was society taking care of it. This should be out of sarkari tantra,” he said.
The event held over the weekend will be followed by many such programs that will be held in various other states in India.
Divided in three parts and there were parallel sessions where the academicians discussed “content, contemporary trends and challenges in their respective discipline.”
The expert sessions were on different themes – “Cultural Onslaught” was addressed by co-convenor of Swadeshi Jagran Manch S Gurumurthy, and chaired by the Vice Chancellor of Banaras Hindu University Dr GC Tripathi.
The second session on “Intellectual colonization” was chaired by the former principal of Brihan Maharashtra Commerce College, Pune Anirudh Deshpande, Indologist Acharya Vamdev Shastri (David Frawley), and Dr Manohar Shinde, founder director Dharma Civilization Foundation USA. The last session “Resurgence of Nationalism – East and West” saw Professor VP Nanda of International Law Denver University with BK Kuthiala of MCRPV Bhopal.
The convenor of the program, Delhi University professor of Political Science, Prakash Singh, said, “Our academic disciplines are leaning towards western education – to bring the change we have to create literature, change minds of people and society. We have to reach among the academics first, change their thinking to start with, students will come next.”