Professor Ramaranjan Mukherji departed this earth for the Great Beyond on 13 March, 2010. He was one of the greatest scholars of his times — aesthetics was to him a part of life, while other branches of study likewise revealed themselves to him like friends. He had written and published a number of books, hut these reveal only a fraction of his monumental erudition.
Apart from his knowledge and sensibility, Prof. Mukherji had shown himself an extremely able administrator. He had built up the Department of Sanskrit in Jadavpur University; he had served as Vice-Chancellor at the University of Burdwan and Rabindra Bhatrati University; he had been the Chancellor at Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeeth, Tirupathi: he was Founder-Chairman at Sri Sitaram Vaidik Adarsha Sanskrit Mahavidyalaya affiliated to Rashtriya Sanskrit Samsthan, Deemed University, New Delhi; Founder-President, Sri Sri Sitaramdas Oñkamath Sanskrit Siksha Samsad and Founder-Chairman at Tollygunge Engineering College and Sun Engineering College. At the time of passing away he was also President. Sanskrit Sahitya Parishad.
As a man. Prof. Mukherji represented the highest ideal. As lofty as a mountain and as deep as the ocean, he was always willing to help anyone in trouble. to-give a hand to those stumbling on life’s uneven path and to give a patient hearing to all those who flocked to him in times of adversity.
In his life time he received many awards: he was given the Visva Bharati Award bS’ the State Govt. Uttar Pradesh; Mahamahopadhyaya by Govt. Sanskrit College, Kolkata; The Hiroshima Peace Award by Sokagakkai University, Japan; Vacaspati by Lal Bahadur Sastri Sanskrit Vidyapeeth; Vedãñga Studies Award by Maharshi Sandipani Vedavidya Pratishihan; the Mahakavi Kalidasa Award by Kavikulaguru Kalidasa Vishvavidyalaya; lie was made Vivekananda Professor by Ramikrishna Mission Institute of Culture; he received- the President’s Award, Govt. of India and had lately been awarded the Padmashree, but did not live to receive it. His achievements received appreciation and acclaim all over India and internationally.
To the Department of Sanskrit, Jadavpur University, had a special position. Not only was he Head of the Department for many years, but was also responsible for nurturing this Department and raising it to the glorified status it achieved. To his students he was always a source of comfort and solace, to all around him he was a tower of strength. His absence will be specially felt at Jadavpur University which will always miss his tender smile and resonant voice.
May his soul rest in peace!
The present volume of “Anviksd”, the esteemed research journal of the Department of Sanskrit, Jadavpur University, is a tribute to the sacred memory of Prof. Ramaranjan Mukherji, a doyen of Oriental Studies, an eminent teacher, and a man with monumental personality. Poetics and aesthetics were his forte and since a refresher course of our department dwelled on this topic, we thought it the only natural to include the papers and presentations of this course in the present volume of “Anviksã”. The theme of the refresher course was “Aesthetics : Eastern and Western” and distinguished scholars, renowned theatre personalities, eminent danseuses, veteran musicians, and management professionals participated as resource persons. Participants included college and university teachers from a variety of streams like Sanskrit, Philosophy, Bengali, Music (Vocal and Instrumental), and Painting and History of Art. Scholastic articles of both resource persons and participants converge in this volume of “Anvkã”. We sincerely hope that this volume of “Anvikcã” will find a prominent place in the bookshelves of serious researchers of aesthetics. After all, there is no better way of remembering Prof. Mukherji and paying homage to his undaunted scholarly spirit, other than being a rover in his oeuvre, a large part of which comprises of poetics and aesthetics.
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