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At the time of inception of Osmania University its emblem contained Arabic inscription of the tradition of prophet Mohammed Peace Be Upon Him (PBUH), which states:

"I am the city of knowledge and Ali is its gate"

On the top this emblem, the crown of Nawab Mir Osman Ali Khan, the seventh Nizam and the founder of Osmania University was depicted. On either side of the crown, diverging beams of lights were shown and the words "Noorun Ala Noor" were printed in Arabic which are in praise of prophet mohammed (PBUH) since he was the embodiment of light. On either side of the lower portion of the emblem the words "Jamia Osmania" were inscribed in Urdu. The centre of the emblem had the Urdu letter "Ain" depicting the first letter of the name of Mir Osman Ali Khan (Osman). The late Nizam used to affix his initial (signature) by using this Urdu letter only.

The emblem of Osmania University was changed in a gradual manner. First, the crown was dropped and later Arabic and Urdu inscriptions were deleted.

The present logo of Osmania University better expresses a commitment to linguistic diversity than the earlier logo. Unfurling banners at the bottom declare "Osmania Vishwavidyalayamu, "Osmania University" in Telugu and in English. The motto at the top, "tamaso ma jyotirgamaya" "lead us from darkness into light" is drawn from the Sanskrit Brhudaranyaka Upanishad and is written in the Devanagari script (the same script used to write modern Hindi). At its center is the solitary letter ain, the Urdu and Perso Arabic letter with which the name Osmania begins. The appearance of English in the logo comes as no great surprise since Osmania University is located in the city of Hyderabad, a city of over eight million people known internationally as an English language business hub. Despite the fact that Osmania University is an English medium university, in keeping with the near absolute dominance of the English language in Indian higher education, the proliferation of languages and scripts in its logo is a heartening sign.