Sampurnanand Sanskrit Vishwavidyalaya

Sanskrit is the most ancient and perfect among the languages of the world. Its storehouse of knowledge is an unsurpassed and the most invaluable treasure of the world. This language is a symbol of the peculiar India tradition and thought, which has exhibited fullssui1.jpg (8092 bytes) freedom in the search of truth, has shown complete tolerance towards spiritual and other king of experiences of mankind, and has shown catholicity towards universal truth. This language contains not a rich fund of knowledge its international significance and to keep intact traditional scholarship and to strike a compromise between India and western outlooks and to conduct research and study the various aspects of culture and spiritual literature, this university was founded on 22 March, 1958 by the then Chief Minister Dr. Sampurnanand and Education Minister Pt. Kamalapati Tripathi at Varanasi, the oldest cultural city of India, with the name of `Varanaseya Sanskrit Vishwavidyalaya', Dr. A.N. Jha is its first vice-chancellor. It was renamed as Sampurnanand Sanskrit University under the U.P. State University Act, 1973, w.e.f.16th Dec. 1974. The University has since been proceeding along the set path of the programme while trying to achieve its goal. If its former shape "Govt. sanskrit College" is included it has an excellent history of about 205 years. The history of the Sampurnanand Sanskrit University includes history of the Sanskrit Education itself. The guideline set by the glorious past of the Govt. Sanskrit College, Benares has been most appropriate for the University. Under a proposal if Sri JonathanDuncan, the then resident of East India Company and the approval of Governor General Lord Carnwalis, this Govt. Sanskrit College was established in 1791. Pt. Kashinath was its first teacher and Acharya. There was an arrangement for the teaching of subjects such as Veda, Vedanta Purana, Ayurveda, Sahitya, Astrology, Theology, Mimamsa, Nyaya, etc. The college was conducted with the surplus revenue of the Benares State which was first deposited in a special account and later remitted to the general head of education. In 1844, Sri J. Muir, ICS, was made its first principal Effortswere made to develop the college in various respects. Dr. J.R.Valentine developed the spirit of a comparative study of oriental and occidental classics and specific sanskrit texts were translated into English in order to achieve this goal. Dr. Valentine established an Anglo-Sanskrit Department with this end in view. In 1861,Dr.R.T.H.Grifith was appointed its Principal. He was the first scholar who translated the valmiki Ramayan into English verses. A reasonable achievement was made in the direction of development, preservation and advancement of Sanskrit learning during his principalship. The publication of `The Pandit' - `Kashi Viva Sudhanidhi' was launched which contained translations of many rare Sanskrit texts. The publication of this magazine continued till 1916. During the Principalship of Dr. G.Theibo the system of oral examination was abolished and the system of written examination as well the issue of certificates and degrees was started. During the period of Dr. Arthur Venis (1888-1918), the publication of Vijayanagara series of Sanskrit texts was accomplished. In 1909, the post of Examination Controller was created. In 1904, an effort was made to give it the name and form of university. Efforts were made to collect, preserve and publish Sanskrit manuscripts which resulted in the establishment of the "Saraswati Bhavana" library, which is most reputed and well known in the whole world. During the principalship of Dr. Ganga Nath Jha (1918-1923) the publication of "Saraswati Bhavana Granthamala" and "Saraswati Bhavana Studies" was started and specific Sanskrit texts based on deep research were published which marked a remarkable approach in the direction of study and dissemination of knowledge inherent in Sanskrit texts. Moreover, a Board of Sanskrit Studies was set up to conduct examination. Mahamahopadhyaya Pt. Gopinath Kaviraj (Principal - 1923-1937) contributed significantly through translation and publication of specific texts as well cataloguing of manuscripts. In 1937, another effort was made to give it the name and form of a University but it could not materialise until 1956 when Varanaseya Sanskrit University Act was passed. It is remarkable that this college performed all those acts which an all India University is expected to do. Convocations were held between 1947 to 1958 every time in the manner of a University. The Sanskrit Colleges of this Country and that of Nepal were affiliated to this college even before this University was founded. the number of affiliated colleges in U.P. alone was 1441. Thus this college acted like a University not only for this country but also for other countries Pandit Kuber Nath Sukla was the last principal of the Govt. Sanskrit College. He was also the first Registrar of the University. this University was established as an international center of study, teaching and research in Sanskrit. Its main aim was:-

(a) to establish an international centre for the study of and research in the Sanskrit Literature,

(b) to co-ordinate the oriental and occidental currents of thoughts while preserving the ancient tradition,

(c) to provide for the traditional method of study, teaching etc. of the Sanskrit, Pali and Prakrit languages and the subjects connected with them on the ancient lines

(d) with a view properly to evaluate the Indian culture to gather full knowledge of the literature in Sanskrit, the basis of Indian culture and other old and new languages of Asia related thereto, which have taken therefrom words either in original or equivalents form,

(e) to study and do researches in the comparative critical study of Indian culture as well as the cultures connected therewith so that it may be co-orfinated, as far as possible, with the human culture,

(f) to produce new and talented scholars who are well versed in the knowledge of traditional Sanskrit and who are fully acquainted with modern thoughts, and are capable of carrying on comparative study on modern lines,

(g) to expand, spread and enlarge the Sanskrit language and the Indian culture in all directions,

(h) and to collect and publish rare Sanskrit books and to revise, edit and publish important Sanskrit manuscripts.