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‘Dropping Ramanujan essay ridiculous’

On the same day that the Delhi University’s Executive Council ratified the Academic Council’s decision to remove A K Ramanujan’s essay on the Ramayana from the University syllabus,the author’s friend and playwright Girish Karnad delivered the ‘First A K Ramanujan Lecture’ at Ramjas College.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: March 22, 2012 4:09 am

On the same day that the Delhi University’s Executive Council ratified the Academic Council’s decision to remove A K Ramanujan’s essay on the Ramayana from the University syllabus,the author’s friend and playwright Girish Karnad delivered the ‘First A K Ramanujan Lecture’ at Ramjas College.

Calling the University’s decision to remove the essay for being objectionable “ridiculous”,Karnad spoke to a packed hall of students and teachers on Wednesday about Ramanujan’s contributions as a poet,thinker and linguist.

“Ramanujan is one of the most original minds I have known. He did so much more than write a single essay called Three Hundred Ramayanas… It is ridiculous the controversy about Three Hundred Ramayanas has come up in a state where more people quote the Ramcharitmanas than the Valmiki Ramayana. So to stick to the Sanskrit text as the original is ridiculous. This is not a conclusion I wanted to draw here,but that’s how it is,” Karnad said.

The lecture was part of a day-long programme — Speaking with Ramanujan — organised by the Ramjas College History Society,and was attended by academics including historian Romila Thapar.

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