May 19, 2013 | 09:57 AM (BD Time)
19 May, 2013 Sunday
14 yrs without convocation
Sayeed Shuvo, RU:
Convocation is a special time to honour the hard work and dedication of the new graduates. Convocation is a yearly affair for a university. It is only delayed when there are unavoidable problems to hold one on time.
For Rajshahi University (RU), however, the problems seem endless and just insurmountable. It has been 14 years now since the university held its last convocation, on 29 November in 1998. Only seven convocations held so far since the inception of the university in 1953, according to university sources.
Sadekul Islam, Deputy Chief Information Officer of RU, informed that only seven convocations were held on the RU campus after the university came into being in 1953.
A special convocation was organised on 23 April in 1973 to offer honorary D Lit to eminent French philosopher Andre Malraux, as Andre worked for the war of liberation of Bangladesh.
Earlier on 16 September 2011, the RU administration informed the journalists that they would hold the 8th convocation in March 2012. But they are still indecisive about any schedule in this regard.
RU Vice-Chancellor Prof M Abdus Sobhan said that the university is going to arrange convocation by this year. He said, "We are trying to have either Noam Chomoskoy or Amartya Sen as the convocation speaker while our chancellor and president of the country Zillur Rahman is expected to chair the programme,". 'We have already met with the Chancellor to talk about the timetable of the convocation', he added.
RU Pro-Vice Chancellor Prof Mohammad Nurullah said that they had sent a letter to the Chancellor of the Universities, President Zillur Rahman, in this regard about five months ago. 'As we have not received any schedule from the Chancellor, we cannot prepare for holding any convocation.
To hold convocation, we need at least three to four months' time', he said.
However, he hoped that they would be able to hold the convocation by November this year as they are trying hard to arrange it. Teachers and students meanwhile blamed political instability on the campus for the delay in holding convocation.
When asked if the authorities are facing any hindrance to holding it, the Pro-VC said they do not see any problems but to hold any convocation they will need the cooperation of all teachers and students of the university as it is a big programme.
Prof Faruk-uj-Jaman, Professor of History Department told the New Nation, 'The academic life of a student completes only after getting certificate through convocation. But Rajshahi University completely failed to arrange that programme,'.
Prof Malay Bhoumick Department of Management, said that convocation is part of education and culture at any university and if any administration fails to hold the function regularly questions can be raised against it for its failure.
A Master's student of Geography and Environmental science blamed political instability and the authorities' carelessness for the delay of organising the function every year.
Students also alleged that the university was in grip of session jam and it was one of the reasons behind the convocation being stalled.
They said if the convocation was arranged every year, all departments would be under pressure to complete their classes and examinations within the schedule.
Shakirul Alam Sonnet who recently completed his masters from the Law & Justice Department of the university told the New Nation that I have been waiting long to get the cherished certificate from the hand of the President, who is also the Chancellor of our university, but my dream is yet to come true.
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