An undated government handout picture of Bangladesh's Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the country's founding father, who was killed along with most of his family members in a military coup on 15 August 1975 Photograph:( AFP )
The establishment of the chair was a decision taken during PM Modi's visit to Bangladesh in March 2021
In a first, the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) will establish a ‘Bangabandhu Chair’ at the Delhi University to further ties between India and Bangladesh. It is a homage to Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Sheikh Mujibur is called father of modern Bangladesh. He always strove for independent Bangladesh and is fondly called 'Bangabandhu' or Friend of Bengal.
Dinesh Patnaik, Director-General of ICCR and Prof PC Joshi, Acting Chancellor of University of Delhi will sign a Memorandum of Understanding on Monday in this regard. A visiting professor or a subject expert on Bangladesh, likely to be a person of Bangladeshi origin will be occupying the "chair".
Key focus will be on the shared cultural heritage of India and Bangladesh with subjects like Anthropology, Buddhist Studies, Geography, History, Music and Fine Arts, Political Science etc.
A release from ICCR said, "As Bangladesh records consistent economic growth and has rapidly raised its socio-economic standards, there could not be a more appropriate time for Indian academia and contributors to policy-making to pay more attention to Bangladesh Studies in an institutional manner. This Chair is an important step in this direction."
The establishment of the chair was a decision taken during PM Modi's visit to Bangladesh in March 2021. The development comes even as both countries have seen increased engagement at every level especially political, with a key focus on connectivity.
"Bangabandhu Chair focuses on a better understanding of developments in Bangladesh, one of India's most important neighbors, positioned at the strategic intersection of our "Neighborhood First "and "Act East" policies", the release said.
The chair will not only teach but also help in mentoring research students and take part in other activities in the university like seminars, public lectures. The initiative, all in all, will help in increasing cultural exchanges between the 2 countries. The development coincides with the 50th anniversary of the Bangladesh Liberation War and Indo-Bangladesh diplomatic relations.