RONO HILLS, Sep 22: The Rajiv Gandhi University’s Department of Education on Thursday organised a two-day national seminar on “Education: Affirmative Action and Inclusion in North-East India” here.
The event aimed at providing a national platform for academicians and scholars to deliberate on a very crucial issue of the time.
P K Acharya, the head of the department of Education, said 96 research and thematic papers would be presented in seven technical sessions of the seminar. Sumin Prakash, also of the department, shared the objectives of the seminar with the audience and justified the cause of selecting the theme.
RGU Vice-Chancellor Saket Kushwaha, in a video message, said the topic of the seminar was relevant and “compels us to think where we stand and what affirmative actions have really been taken in the context of Arunachal Pradesh”.
Joram Begi, Former Chief Information Commissioner and former Director of Higher and Technical Education, graced the occasion as the chief guest of the inaugural session and speaker for the plenary session.
He spoke on “Language Diversity, Indigenous Knowledge system and Education” and highlighted how Assamese was once the lingua franca of the state and the impact of the agitation of 1971 to make English the medium of instruction and the current position of the languages of various tribes with respect to the Hindi Language.
Begi pointed out the importance of establishing the Arunachal State Board of School Education for preserving and propagating the indigenous knowledge system.
Madhu Kushwaha from BHU delivered the keynote address, stressing the importance of forward-looking and backwards-looking approaches in maintaining social justice and the design of affirmative actions.
RGU’s Pro-VC Amitava Mitra presented an economic point of view in maintaining social equity while T Lhungdim, Dean of the Faculty of Education gave a brief account of the history of the department of education.
Prabha Shankar Shukla, the VC and chairman of ICSSR-NERC joined the programme via video link. Senior professors J Sahoo, Elizabeth Hangsing, Kesang Degi and Boa Reena Tok were also present.