Vinoba Bhave University is the fruit of a years long endeavour by the people of Hazaribag. Although the history of higher education in the town goes way back into the past, beginning with the establishment of St Columba’s College in 1899 by the brothers of the Dublin Mission, post-graduate curricula were commenced here only in 1972 with the introduction of MA courses in History and Economics. Subsequently, the college was converted into a post graduate centre of Ranchi University.
By January 1983, post graduate teaching was extended to four more subjects with the approval of the Government of Bihar – English, Hindi Political science and Mathematics. Finally, by Act 3 of 1990, the Bihar state assembly amended the Bihar state Universities Act 1976, carving Vinoba Bhave University out of Ranchi University. It was aptly named after the great saint and pioneer of the Bhoodan Movement, Acharya Vinoba Bhave, as the sage had received here the biggest land donation in the whole of India for social reconstruction.
The foundation stone of the University was laid on 17th January, 1990 by the erstwhile Chief Minister of Bihar, Dr Jagannath Mishra. After two years, (Late) Dr Vinodini Terway was appointed the first Vice Chancellor of the University. She took over charge on 17th September, 1992.
The University soon obtained a motto and a crest - Jeewanam Satya Sodhanam - an extract from one of Vinobaji`s couplets; and an emblem consisting of a Mandala or Astamandala, an ancient Vedic and Tantrik symbol for equanimity and enlightenment – a transuniversal expression of man’s attempt to understand the unknown. At the centre of the Astamandala is a lamp with the flame representing learning, dispelling the darkness of ignorance. The base of the circle holding the Astamandala, and the lamp, are rooted in ancient Indian culture, depicting the architectural motif of Mauryan sculpture. The letters are in the Pali style.
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