Controversy Over Sanskrit
Sanskrit may be one language that has been finding quite a few promoters in the country, but as far as the University of Delhi goes, it seems to be only creating controversies. If the introduction of Sanskrit as a compulsory subject in schools had teachers and institutions protesting, then the coming weeks might just see the brewing of yet another storm. The UGC is now being accused of trying to push yet another Sangh Parivar outfit into the University system. And this time, as part of its attempt to introduce spoken Sanskrit as a new course.
In a circular dated February 23, the UGC had directed the Delhi University to start a Centre for spoken Sanskrit. The 25-hour certificate course has to be completed over one month and will be taught free.
The Left and Democratic Teachers Forum has alleged that not only has the UGC violated University laws by introducing the course without it being passed by the Academic or Executive Council, but invoked the existing standard qualifications for appointing university teachers by handing over the task of teaching the subject to a private institution Sanskrit Bharati.
The circular sent by the UGC cites that ``since the conduct of the course requires a special kind of training and skill and specialised mental exercise, the committee has decided to have an academic collaboration with Sanskrit Bharati for identifying proper teachers for conducting the course''.
By preferring teachers of an RSS-backed organisation to those of the University, the UGC is giving in to the vested interests of the Union Government, the body has alleged. ``Sanskrit Bharati possesses no credentials. One wonders whether this scheme is actually a game plan to make the teaching of Sanskrit and production of related study materials the monopoly of the Sangh Parivar?,'' LDTF has questioned.