The University celebrated World Philosophy Day on 4th November, in an attempt to philosophize on the national scenario of human rights violations and the need for probity in public life.
“As a university community we are committed to promote matters of importance of social responsibility – in revoking thought, discussion and policy making,” said Vice-Chancellor Dr Stephen Mavely, inaugurating the afternoon session marking World Philosophy Day.
The two hour event sponsored by Indian Council of Philosophical Research (ICPR), New Delhi witnessed two renowned academicians speaking on pertinent issues plaguing India today.
Two speakers were Dr. Prasanjit Biswas of North Eastern Hill University, Shillong who spoke on ‘Human Rights and Child Rights and their Violation with Reference to North East India,’ and Dr. Sanjeeb Kakoty of Indian Institute of Management, Shillong who spoke on ‘Probity in Public Life and Corruption.’
Dr. (Fr.) Francis Fernandez, Controller of Examinations (ADBU) chaired the session attended by some 150 Masters level students of Social Work, Human Rights, Education, Psychology, and Mass Communication.
Speaking on basic concepts of human rights Dr Biswas said, “self-determination is a moral and ethical concept which gives a person complete ownership upon oneself based on human freedom.” He insisted, “The very notion of being human and democratic hold together.”
Commenting on today’s intolerant political scenario Dr Biswas warned, “No regime based on narrow sectarian view has survived, nor can survive”. Dr Biswas cited the human rights case of India as one of the worst offenders of Protection of Child Rights. “Our position in child rights is a little above Myanmar and Uganda.” To the utter surprise of the audience Dr Biwas said, “India is not a signatory to Palermo protocol – on prevention of child trafficking.”
Speaking on probity in public life Dr Sanjeev Kakoty insisted on “honesty and integrity that people holding public offices must have.”
Highlighting what one individual and concerned young people could do to rectify the degenerating situation Dr Kakoty called on the social media generation “to make use of social media on which young people spend a conservative estimate of four hours a day,” to use it as an effective tool to fight corruption” by naming and shaming the officials. “We need to demand probity and get probity,” said Dr Kakoty a Bosconian alumnus of St Anthony’s College Shillong.
The session concluded with interactive session by students.