The Golden Jubilee celebrations of the Department of Mass Communication, Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University got off to a start today with speakers at the inaugural function expressing concern and optimism in equal measure over the fate of the mass media.
Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Siddhartha Vinayak Kane presided over the function. The guests of honour were Prof. Sharad Patil, the senior-most former head of the department, and veteran journalist, Mr. Pradip Kumar Maitra who is also the President of the department’s Alumni Association. Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Vinayak Deshpande, and Head of the Department, Dr. Moiz Mannan Haque, were prominently present.
On this occasion, the Department expressed its gratitude to its former heads. They were felicitated with shawl, shreephal and a commemorative golden jubilee plaque by Vice Chancellor, Prof. Kane. The ex-heads present at the ceremony were Prof. Sharad Patil, Prof. K.G.Misar, Prof. Chandrashekhar Gupta and Prof. Vinod Indurkar. Senior teachers who have been associated with the department over the years and also non-teaching staff members who have earlier worked with the department were special invitees.
Speaking at the function, Prof. Kane stressed the need for news media to stick to facts and be truthful in reporting events and issues. “There are three approaches that journalists can adopt. They can use intelligence, cleverness or wisdom. I believe they should use their wisdom and conscience more often,” he said.
He also pointed out that revolutionary advances in communication technology have changed the way people communicate. “Communicators need to be aware of these developments and quickly adopt and master the futuristic technologies to be more effective,” he said.
Earlier, Prof. Sharad Patil recalled his days with the department and observed how technology has impacted the discipline of Mass Communication. “In those days, it used to be called the Department of Journalism. With the advent and proliferation of television and now the digital technology, and also considering the lifestyles and habits of people, the scope of Mass Communication has grown manifold,” he said.
Senior journalist, Mr. Pradip Kumar Maitra, emphasized the need to create teaching and training curricula that are in tune with the modern requirements. He suggested that the department should start offering short courses in specialized areas such as news reporting, media management, and language skills.
Mr. Maitra recalled that Nagpur has the unique distinction of offering the first structured journalism course in free India. This city also presents a rare example where newspapers in three languages – Marathi, Hindi, and English – have such large readerships. The thriving media culture, therefore, presents excellent opportunities for budding journalists, he said.
Pro-Vice-Chancellor Prof. Vinayak Deshpande said, “It’s not an easy thing for any academic institution to complete fifty years with such success.” He spoke about how journalism has played a significant role in the development of society on both social and technological fronts.
The Department of Mass Communication is uniquely placed in the university system to become a center of inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary learning as it encompasses so many fields, he said.
The dignitaries also released the latest issue of ‘Campus’ – the students’ newspaper. Certificates were given away by Prof Vinayak Deshpande to students of the current and previous batch who had excelled or participated in the Model Gram Sabha, Poster-making, Slogan-writing and Traditional Day events of the department in the 2018-19 session. Ex-student, Mr. Rakesh Sathawane was felicitated by Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Kane, for designing the logo and other golden jubilee branding material of the department.
Earlier, in his opening remarks, Head of the Department, Dr. Moiz Mannan Haque, recalled the achievements of the department in the last 50 years. Students of the department have made huge contributions in different fields and that is mainly because of the dedicated services rendered by its teachers, he said.
He informed that during the golden jubilee year a string of training and skill development activities will be held and the celebrations will conclude with a national-level event. A mega Alumni Meet would be held in February 2020, he announced.
The inauguration programme was conducted by Amar Aney. The certificate distribution ceremony was handled by Manthan Patle, Priyanka Devase, Nusrat Khan and Shubham Durge. The guests were welcomed by Megha Rokade, Pooja Parale, Aradhana Dubey, Puja Jangde and Disha Kareshiya. Faculty member, Mrs. Snigdha Khatawkar, proposed a vote of thanks.
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