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Governor –cum-chancellor of Bihar Universities, Lalji Tandon today carried forward the legacy of convocation at Tilka Manjhi Bhagalpur University (TMBU) which for the first time introduced by the kings of Pala dynasty in the later half of eight th century AD at Vikramshila Buddha Mahavihara, the erstwhile ancient world University here.
Tandon today claimed that several steps for reformation in higher education adopted in Bihar. He also recalled the old rich legacies and traditions of this land that once towered tall in the world due to Vikramshila Buddha Mahavihara, the ancient world University.
Tandon was addressing at the 45 th convocation at (TMBU) today. Different medals including 90 gold medals were given to passing out students of the varsity for their outstanding performances.
Today’s convocation ceremony has little bit changed; some old customs have been changed mainly for promoting old traditional customs. However, the organizers of today’s convocation perhaps have no idea about the ancient rituals of this land otherwise the function would have been different instead of remaining just a formality, alleged many who preferably recalled the lost glory of this land.
According to historical references, King Dharma Pala had established Vikramshila Buddha Mahavihar and the varsity for the first time introduced convocation to confer the decree to the passing out students.
According to some old Tibetan Buddhist texts and also mentioned in the dairy of Lama Taranath, a Buddhist traveler-cum-historian who visited Vikramshila sometime after its demolish in the hands of Turks, convocation at Vikramshila varsity was indeed a memorable event in the pages of history.
The entire arrangement for such convocations were minutely monitored by the monarch’s (read Pala Kings) own managements despite the fact that the ancient varsity had its own foolproof managements.
One old manuscript has mentioned “ during the convocations all the recipients of decrees (students) were assembled in the central hall while there was special seating arrangements of the dignitaries like the king, his ministers and top ranking varsity personnel. Though Atisha was not in the top most post in the varsity, but he was high in the hierarchy among the dignitaries invited at such convocation. During the tenure of Acharya Dipankar Srighyan Atisha , he came on the stage after the entrance of the king in convocation ceremony…”. It further said that “ when Atisha arrived on the stage, the king himself stood up to greet Atisha..” the Tibetan documents mentioned.
“We are just conducting the formalities despite the fact that we have such privileges to display our glorious past. The convocation of the varsity should have such ancient touch. TMBU also should put more emphasis on research works on Vikramshila,” urged Siv Shanker Singh Parijat, a historian who complied a book on Atisha.
According to Rajiv Siddharth, president of Press Club of Eastern Bihar, a local body of the scribed at Bhagalpur that they earlier demanded for establishing a chair in the name of Atisha at TMBU. “During the visit of the than governor-cum-chancellor, Bihar Universities, Satya Pal Malik at Vikramshila, we handed over him our demand for setting up a chair in the name of Atisha at TMBU and he assured us. But after his departure, nothing has happened till now,” Siddharth recalled.