About Visva-Bharati, Santiniketan,West Bengal

Visva-Bharati: A Central University of National Importance:
Visva-Bharti at Santiniketan, in a rural setting in the district of Birbhum, West Bengal was founded by Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore in 1901 as a residential school “Brahmacharya Asrama”. This Asrama Vidyalaya became “Visva-Bharati” on December 23, 1921 and finally in 1951 it became a Central University by an Act of Parliament of India. In 1863, on a seven-acre plot at the site of the present institution, Debendranath Tagore, the poet's father, had built a small retreat for meditation, and in 1888 he dedicated, by a trust deed, the land and buildings, towards establishment of an Asrama where seekers after truth irrespective of their formal religious affiliations, sect, creed and caste could come and meditate in seclusion; a Brahma-vidyalaya and a library. Rabindranath's school Brahm-acharyasrama which began functioning formally from December 22, 1901 with no more than five students on the roll, was, in part, a fulfilment of the wishes of his father who was an eminent figure of his time in the field of educational reforms. From 1925 this school came to be known as Patha-Bhavana. Siksha Satra at Sriniketan is another school also established by Rabindranath Tagore in 1924.
The University has two campuses, one at Santiniketan and the other at Sriniketan, which is about 3 kms from Santiniketan. Presently Visva-Bharati has Bhasha-Bhavana (Institute of Languages, Literature and Culture), Vidya-Bhavana (Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences), Siksha-Bhavana (Institute of Science), Sangit-Bhavana (Institute of Music, Dance and Drama), Kala-Bhavana (Institute of Fine Arts), Palli-Samgathana Vibhaga (Institute of Rural Reconstruction), Palli-Siksha Bhavana (Institute of Agriculture), Vinaya-Bhavana (Institute of Education), Rabindra-Bhavana.
Undergraduate and postgraduate courses offered in these Bhavana / Institutes are:  Chinese, Japanese, Tibetan, Persian, Bengali, English, Hindi, Oriya, Sanskrit and Santali languages; Ancient Indian History Culture and Archaeology, Comparative Religion, Economics, Geography, History, Philosophy, Journalism and Mass Communication; Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science, Botany, Zoology, Environmental Sciences, Bio-technology, Integrated Science (five years); Rabindra-Sangeet, Manipuri Dance, Kathakali Dance, Hindusthani Classical Music (Vocal, Instrumental: Sitar/Esraj/Tabla/Pakhawaj); Painting, Graphic Art (Print Making), Design (Ceramics / Textiles), History of Art, Sculpture; Social Work, Rural Development, Anthropology, Four years Bachelor in Design; Agricultural Sciences: Agronomy, Plant Protection, Agricultural Extension, Soil Science, Horticulture.  Moreover, M. Phil, Ph.D., Foreign Casual Courses, Certificate and Diploma Courses are offered by most of the Institutes / Bhavanas.

Visva-Bharati Library


The Library in Santiniketan subsisted with the establishment of the Ashram Vidyalaya since 1901 with Tagore’s own book collection, which was transferred from Jorasanko, Kolkata. Tagore emphasized the use of books for the educational development of students. Thus Santiniketan Library developed and was enriched with the great care and nourishment of Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore.
Visva-Bharati Library has a comprehensive collection of about 8 lakh documents in its Central Library along with 12 sectional libraries and 30 seminar libraries. The Central Library has today 413563 volumes of books, around 10,000 users and a daily transaction of 450 books. The Central Library has a number of important collections, viz. Prabodhchandra Bagchi, Pramatha Choudhuri, Humayun Kabir, Satikumar Chattopadhyay, Lila Ray, Ashok Rudra and Abanindranath Tagore.
The library subscribes to around 300 current journals; and more than 5000 e-journals available from UGC-INFONET Consortia. It has taken the initiative to build this library as a digital one by converting its own resources into digital form; by procuring born digitised documents, viz., E-journals, E-books, CD-ROMs, etc. and by sharing other institution’s / organisations’ documents. The Library uses the proprietary software Unicode compliant Libsys–4 as Library Management Software. Main library housekeeping works and daily library operation i.e. Acquisition of library documents, Cataloguing, Serial control, Circulation, OPAC, etc. work smoothly.
The Campus-wide Optic Fiber Cable (OFC) network of Visva-Bharati, named GitanjaliNet is spread over 65 departments / centres / units of the University. Visva-Bharati Library has also connected with the Campus wide Fiber Optic Network The Library has 3 Servers, 92 PCs, 38 printers, 20 scanners, 2 copiers for its Central Library and 12 Sectional Libraries. The Library offers services and facilities to its users for E-book browsing, E-journal browsing, online searching, E-mail facilities for academic and research purposes, etc. Visva-Bharati Library catalogue database holds 6,16,871 titles of documents containing 5,72,368 individual accession numbers including 43,000 bound volumes of journals and 1100 theses.  Presently the library has the following E-resources, which are regularly browsed through Central Library Home Page (http://172.16.2.2). Some of the important E-resources of the Library are:
5500+   E-journals available under UGC InfoNet Consortia.
1050+ free E-journals from publishers
78+       online E-journals on subscription basis
1544    Purchased (Perpetual mode) E-Books
5100    Subscribed E-books & E-journals (DELNET)
20000+ Subscribed E-journals through J-Gate
869 +    free online digitised books 
102       DVDs containing Central Library Old Documents (digitised)
620 +    CD-ROMs.

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