|The main gate of Majuli College and (below) the college’s new canteen. Telegraph pictures
Jorhat, May 14: Majuli College, the oldest college on the Brahmaputra island, is adding value to its new canteen by planning to make students’ addas (informal conversations) more educative from the new academic session in August.
The college authorities have decided to open a knowledge corner in the students’ section of the new canteen, with newspapers, magazines, books and messages of great personalities to attract students, apart from refreshments.
Majuli College, established in 1962 at Kamalabari area of the island, is a premier co-educational institute, offering courses at higher secondary, under-graduate and post-graduate levels in arts and science streams. At present, the college has about 1,100 students with a teaching strength of 65 in 16 departments.
Principal Sashikanta Saikia told The Telegraph that the idea was to create a “more positive environment” on the campus. He said students sitting together in the canteen for refreshments during breaks and having adda was a normal activity in colleges across the world.
“Our aim is to attract the attention of students towards knowledge-based themes and divert their topic of discussions to more fruitful subjects rather than passing time on mundane things,” Saikia said.
The principal said after seeing a magazine or a newspaper in the canteen, the students might like to browse and discuss relevant topics instead of just whiling away their time.
He said famous statements by great personalities and a collection of well-known books, especially those that could inspire the new generation to be strong, morally upright and also contribute to the uplift of society, would be kept in a corner.
“The college library allows students to read books or take them home. We plan to depute a staff member from the library to look after the knowledge corner,” Saikia said, adding the corner will be an extension of their library services.
Saikia said to make the environment “likable”, the canteen has been made spacious and moulded plastic furniture installed.
The principal said pictures and painting depicting different aspects of the unique culture of Majuli would be put up. He said any visitor coming to the canteen could have glimpse of the island’s culture by looking at the pictures of xatras (Vaishnavite monasteries), Xattriya and dance forms of other tribes residing in Majuli, flora and fauna and traditional foods. Saikia said the college has a plan to set up a knowledge park on campus, beautify the area and offer children of nearby areas a play zone.
President of the Majuli sub-division unit of AASU, Pabitra Goswami, welcomed the initiative. He said the union would support any move to improve the academic standard of the college.