'Knowledge not brain-centric alone'

'Knowledge not brain-centric alone'

URA moots for skills and arts to be part of mainstream curriculum

Jnanpith awardee U R Ananthamurthy inaugurates the inter-collegiate competition at Senate Bhavan in Mysore on Wednesday. Danseuse Tulasi Ramachandra, registrar B Ramu, singer Raghu Dixit and others are seen. dh photo

He was speaking after inaugurating inter-college competitions held under the aegis of Maharaja College at Senate Bhavan, Manasagangotri here on Wednesday.

Addressing the students and lecturers among the audience, U R Ananthamurthy, popularly known as URA said: “Sports, music, literature and dance, which are considered as co-curricular activities, should be made part of curriculum so as to allow the students to bloom in the most natural way, than forcing something that is called ‘knowledge’ on them. A blacksmith may not be good at studying, but his skill set lies in his work. One cannot deny the fact he knows iron like the back of his hand. Universities should be able to assess his knowledge on his own ground, than expecting him to tread an unknown road and ratify him on that.”

Calling upon lecturers to hone the minds of their students on these aspects and guide them well, than dismissing their talent which could be sports or theatre, or swimming or even jumping the fence, URA said spaces should be created to accommodate students from those communities to whom the current educational system would have seemed like an albatross.

Ruing the fact that not too many from teaching faculty were present at the event where students were taking part in various competitions, URA said during his times, the lecturers ensured their presence at such events and even involved themselves in discussions. “Today, despite extremely good salaries which has shot up to nearly Rs one lakh for lecturers, they are involved in discussing real estate,” he said.

Regretting the disappearance of the art of story-telling being lost, URA said the grandmothers in earlier generations had the ability to shape the imagination and logical thinking capabilities along with instilling values, among the younger generation with their stories. “Universities should consider enrolling the services of senior citizens with an aptitude for telling stories in classrooms. This will certainly help,” he added.

Reminiscing the earlier Mysore where culture played a major role, URA said everyone in the cultural capital had an orientation towards music or culture, to be able to appreciate it. “Everyone who learns need not be a great dancer or musician. But, knowing an art can surely enable a person to appreciate it better,” he added. Singer-Composer Raghu Dixit, danseuse Tulasi Ramachandran, University of Mysore Registrar B Ramu and others were present on the occasion. Raghu Dixit enthralled the audience with his songs, on demand by the students.

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