DISTRICT ADMINISTRATION RUPNAGAR ORGANIZED A LINGUISTIC AND CULTURAL EXCHANGE PROGRAM IN COLLABORATION WITH IIT ROPAR UNDER THE AZADI KA AMRIT MAHOTSAV CAMPAIGN
The District Administration of Rupnagar on Friday, 27 May arranged a series of events with local students to contribute to the Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav (AKAM) initiative. The participants included 150 students from three schools – Shiwalik School, Khalsa School, and St. Carmel School. The events focused on highlighting the cultural diversity and historicity of the Indian nation.
The first leg of events was conducted at IIT Ropar. The administration conducted a linguistic and cultural exchange program between the Telugu-speaking and Punjabi-speaking populations. The event was inaugurated by the Deputy Commissioner, Rupnagar, Ms. Preeti Yadav (IAS) and Director, IIT Ropar, Prof. Rajeev Ahuja. After that, Dr. C. Chakradhar Reddy, Prof. Sankara Raju, and District Development Fellow, Tushar Singh Bodwal conducted a session on the basics of the Telugu language and gave a detailed insight into the cultural aspects of Telugu speaking states. The students were excited to know about the prominent temples in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, and the diverse forms of dances and foods. They were particularly enthused to discover that some of their favorite cinema was in fact the products of the Telugu industry. Following this, the students were taken on a tour of IIT Ropar by the professors, allowing them to observe the campus. The tour was conducted so that the young school students gained practical and immersive insight into being a student at an IIT – an experience tailored to create and nurture the aspiration of attending institutions of scientific excellence.
The last stage of activities focused on historical matters. It involved a practical tour highlighting proto-historical knowledge and an effort to communicate the value of collecting and maintaining such knowledge by stressing the importance of museums. The students were taken to an Indus Valley Civilization site in Rupnagar. This area was discovered by Professor Bhrijwasi Lal in 1950 and was later excavated under Dr. Yagdutt Sharma between 1952 and 1955.
They were informed of the historical significance of the sites that they visited and given facts about the museum in Ropar which was established in 1998 and is curated around artifacts dating to the Indus Valley Civilisation, about which the students were specifically educated. They were then made aware of the geographical significance of the site by communicating to them that the topographical propitiousness of the area surrounding the Sutlej River has always made it a prime spot for human civilization to thrive. The students were informed that one such civilization, the Indus Valley Civilisation, existed between 2000-1400 BCE. All of these events, together, were organized not just to generate awareness but also to inculcate curiosity and pride in India’s present and previous cultures among the youth of the day.