Rabindra University, the first university named after Rabindranath Tagore started its academic activities in Sirajganj on Tuesday, eight years after Bangladesh decided to establish it as it was celebrating the poet's 150th birthday.
"The classes of three departments have started to mark the launching of our academic activities today," Vice Chancellor of the university Bishwajit Ghosh told BSS.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina announced to set up Rabindra University at the Osmani Memorial Auditorium in Dhaka city on the occasion of birth anniversary of Bishwakabi Rabindranath Tagore. Following the declaration, the Premier laid the foundation stone of Rabindra University on 25 Baishakh, the month of Bangla calendar in 1422.
"We have completed all procedures for recruiting manpower including teachers and employees. At the initial stage, the authorities enrolled students at three departments," the VC said.
A total of 97 students were enrolled on April 5 this year at the three departments. The names of the departments are - Rabindra Studies, Cultural Heritage and Bangladesh Studies and Economics.
More departments will be opened at the university in phases, he added.
An act titled 'Rabindra University Bangladesh' was enacted at the Jatiya Sangsad on July 26, 2016. After passing the law, the process of setting up of the university got a faster pace.
On June 11, 2017, Bishwajit Ghosh, a teacher of Arts faculty of Dhaka University, was appointed as Vice Chancellor of Rabindra University.
Academic activities including classes will be held at Shahjadpur Women Degree College, Bangabandhu Women Degree College and Maulana saifuddin Ahiya Degree College as Rabindra University does not have its own campus yet.
With efforts of local lawmaker Hasibur Rahman Swapan, the university authorities signed three agreements with these three colleges to continue its academic and administrative activities on their premises until the university gets its own infrastructure.
Shahjadpur upazila nirbahi officer Sheheli Laila said a total of 300 acres of land were allocated for the university.