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The Academy – a Profile

The Sanskrit Academy is a well-known research Institute in the filed of Sanskrit, functioning as an inter-university research centre of the famous Osmania University (OU), Hyderabad, South India.  It was established in 1954 as part of the Indology Department within the premises of the University’s College of Arts.

In 2002, the Academy was elevated to the status of a Central Autonomous Research Institute with the recognition and financial support of the Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India.  The Academy is now recognized as an Adarsha Shodha Sansthan or Model Research Institute.

As an institution dedicated to the upliftment of the Sanskrit language, the Academy has, over the years, endeavored to make people aware of the richness and beauty of Sanskrit and the countless works produced in this remarkable language.  The Academy is also striving to create greater awareness of the urgent need for an appreciation, understanding and application – in every walk of life – of the wealth of knowledge existing in Sanskrit.

The Academy is also a learning centre for anyone who wishes to learn Sanskrit as a language.  It conducts courses on functional Sanskrit, Sanskrit literature, Sanskrit grammer, and on the Shastras such as Jyotisha, Vastu, Yoga, the philosophy of the Bhagavad-Gita etc.

The Academy Environment

The old but robust Academy building is located on the OU Campus, surrounded by several distinguished learning centres – the University College of Arts, the English and Foreign Language University (EFLU), the AP Government Manuscript Library, and the Distance Education Centre, the Hindi Academy, and the Dairatul Maarifil Osmania.

The Academy has a large library with a rare collection of Sanskrit works, dealing with Vedic studies, the Shastras, and classical as well as modern Sanskrit literature.  This has enabled the Academy to serve as a premier study and research centre for Sanskrit research scholars; this Library has been the main reference ground for many a dissertation and monograph.

Although only six full-time academic staff form the backbone of the Academy, it is supported by the erudite community of the OU Sanskrit Department as well as other scholars.  It has also established a bilateral academic relationship with the Hyderabad Central University, the Telugu University, the EFLU and the International Institution of Information Technology.  The Academy is therefore in a prime position to not only guide research scholars in their pre-and post-doctoral research, but also to undertake research projects funded by various agencies.

Publications:

As a logical consequence of its research focus, publication forms a thrust area receiving particular attention at the Academy.  Each staff of the academy is engaged in the editing and preparation of at least one Sanskrit publication a year.  After a gap of several years, the scholarly Journal of the Sanskrit Academy has also been revived.

Some of the Academy’s most remarkable publications are :  Kkasika (a commentary on Panini’s Asthadhyayi), Nyasa and Padamanjari, and index to Kasika, a collection of Kshemendra’s small literacy pieces, a collection of poetics by Jagannatha Pandita, Sahityaratnakara, Ayurvedabdhisara.  In the last five decades, the Academy has published more than 75 works, of which many are extremely rare.  

Our Founders, Mentors and Guides:

The Academy owes its existence to the collective effort of three illustrious individuals – Prof. Aryendra Sharma, the Founder Director and Head of the Department of the Sanskrit (OU), Prof. Suri Bhagavantham, the Vice-Chancellor, and Dr.B.Ramakrishna Rao, the then Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh.

In the years that followed, the Vice-Chancellors and other administrative heads of OU continued to extend valuable support.  Prof. V.Kutumba Shahstry, Vice-Chancellor, Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan, New Delhi, was instrumental in reinvigorating the activities of the Academy.

Several erudite scholars have performed their lifetime ‘knowledge-sacrifice’ at the Academy with unparalleled devotion.  Aryendra Sharma, B.R. Shastry, and P.Sriramachandrudu served as directors for many years.  Other scholars, such as P.G. Padhye, K.Sitarama Bhattacharya, Devalji, Khanderao Deshpande, V.Sundara Sharma and many others were actively associated with the Academy.  Several prominent public personalities have also been a source of inspiration and assistance to the Academy.

During the subsequent, difficult years of the institution, former directors, P.G. Lalye, M.Gopal  Reddy, B.Narasimhacharyulu and K.Kamala offered unflinching commitment K.Kamala, in particular, worked tirelessly to pull the Academy out of its crisis, with financial support to the Academy from the Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan.

Governing Bodies:

The Sanskrit Academy is governed by three entities – the Executive Board, the Academic Board and the Managing Committee.

The Executive Board of the academy is headed by His Excellency the Governor of Andhra Pradesh, as the ex-officio President in his capacity of Chancellor of the Osmania University.  The Vice-Chancellor of OU is the ex-officio Vice-President of the Executive Board.  The Principal Secretaries of Finance and Education Departments of the State Government, and the Registrar of OU, are the other members of the Board.  This is the highest administrative body of the Academy.

The Academic Board headed by the Vice-Chancellor (OU) comprises a professor and the Head of the Department of Sanskrit (OU), and five other eminent Sanskrit scholars nominated by the Vice-Chancellor.  This board guides the Academy in all academic matters.

The Managing Committee headed by the Vice-Chancellor is a mediatory governing body that consists of representatives of the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India.  The Director of the Academy acts as Member-Secretary of all these administering bodies.

Come, support the Academy:

The Sanskrit Academy presently receives its major share of financial support from the Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan, which is a deemed University under the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India.  Matching funding is received from the Osmania University and the Government of Andhra Pradesh in the form of an annual grant.  To some extent, generous support is also provided by the many people who love Sanskrit and who wish to contribute to this key component of India’s ancient civilization.

You too can become a member of the Sanskrit Academy family.  We are a large family that includes the Samskrita Bharati and other Sanskrit organizations who extend their full support in all aspects.  Your simple participation in our programmes will give us tremendous encouragement in our efforts to promote Sanskrit.  You are also welcome to visit or use our unique library and enrich your knowledge.

Do contact us and sponsor any of our activities for the cause of Sanskrit – the language of our unique culture.

We earnestly make an appeal to institutions and the public alike to encourage us by extending generous financial support to the Academy.

We look forward to your valuable feedback.