Felicitation Speech at the Central University of Sikkim

Felicitation Speech  at the Central University of Sikkim on the Teachers’ Day on September 05, 2020

By Professor Sanjoy Bandopadhyay

I never dreamt that my Mother University will ever consider felicitating me for my humble efforts to understand its inherent rhythm and my endeavor to find a matching pace so that the dreams to grow may find its path.  When I received a sudden and unexpected email from our dear JPT, Professor Jyoti Prakash Tamang, announcing this program, it was kind of a happy shock! I shall thank our Hon’ble Vice-Chancellor, Professor Avinash Khare, for the most excellent experience I am enjoying on this beautiful day. I feel incredibly honored, and I am emotional.

To work at Sikkim University for me is a unique experience. My earlier two universities were Performing and Visual Arts focussed. My associations with the Departments of Music and the Faculties of Performing Arts with renowned universities in India never opened before me any idea how music academia can work better when you try to connect with cerebrally rich people of other disciplines. Joining Sikkim University and coming in the proximity of different types of brain waves of the excellent scholars of other disciplines made me think that this may be an alternate powerhouse for the growth of the music students. So, I tried to connect music with varied viewpoints and attempted to make the department grow in a different pattern and get globally visible.

I tried to make the students believe that they are the best. I presume all physically and psychologically healthy humans have similar potentials to grow. I know there can be arguments and debates on this idea, but I felt this was an excellent springboard to start working and mentally preparing our students here for future challenges. I tried to make them understand that FIUT and GRIT are the two keywords for success. 

There has been a lot of discussions on the comparative roles of Talent and Grit. Psychologists give more weightage to GRIT. GRIT is the ability to take challenges and meet the challenges with endurance. You know musicians compose. I composed FIUT. It reminds me of an ancient raga Malashree. The raga has three focus svaras. To accept a raga as a classical raga, you need at least five svaras. So, Malashree added two subsidiary notes to make it classical. Same for FIUT. I tell my students, this raga FIUT has three significant components Focus, Intelligence, and Time. To make it meaningful, the FIUT goes as ‘FOCUSSED AND INTELLIGENT USE OF TIME.’ So, FIUT is an acronym for Focussed and Intelligent use of Time. I tell my students that I trust this combination of FIUT and GRIT can work wonders and bring success in their areas of pursuit. I told this in many open interactions with the students. When people take pride in their successes, I say to my students to take pride in their efforts. Failure proves that someone tried. If the student systematically assesses the reasons for failures, then success is bound to come to them when they are ready. 

I am glad that I had terrific support from my colleagues in the department, Dr. Krishnendu Dutta, Mr. Jayanta Barman, Dr. Samidha Vedabala, Dr. Santosh Kumar, and Dr. Surendra Kumar. 

I had many prolonged interactions with Professor Abhijit Dutta, the Dean of our School of Professional Studies. We discussed how we can grow or how we can invite international research collaborations, and so on. My very warm thanks to Professor Dutta.

I am incredibly grateful for the unbelievable support that I received from our three Hon’ble Vice Chancellors Professor T.B. Subba, Professor J.P. Tamang, and Professor Avinash Khare. I had long earlier experiences of connecting with the University Vice Chancellors. The support I received at Sikkim University, I would like to say, it was overly good clearly. I am extremely thankful to Mr. T.K. Kaul, the Registrar for his right advice at the right time, or the Finance Officer Mr. Debasish Paul for his cooperations. Finally, I would like to thank all my colleagues in different academic departments who helped me to enrich my thoughts and the staff members of the administration for their support. If you noticed any progress or advancements in the department, this was because of all of you. I thoroughly enjoyed working with you and still enjoying it.

Thank you all.