History of Utkal University
Post separation of Orissa the leaders of the province felt that a separate university should be established in Orissa. The government of Orissa, with Shri Biswanath Das as the premier, appointed a committee on 2 March 1938 with Pandit Nilakantha Das to examine the possibility of establishing a separate university in Orissa. Maharaja Krushna Chandra Gajapati played a pioneering role in the establishment of the university. Pandit Godavarish Mishra, the then minister of education in the state introduced the Utkal University Bill which was passed by the Orissa Legislative Assembly on 30 June 1943. The Utkal University Act 1943 came into force and this laid the foundation of the university on 27 November 1943.
However the act was repealed in 1966 and a new Utkal University Act came into effect from 1 January 1967. Initially it was operating from the Ravenshaw College, before it came to its own campus at Bhubaneswar, called Vani Vihar. Ravenshaw College. The affiliation was finally transferred to the Utkal University in 1943. The University has many departments from Anthropology to Zoology, for post-graduate teaching.
Departments of Utkal University
The initial "Utkal University Act - 1943" did not specify the territorial jurisdiction of the University. The Utkal University Act 1943 was amended in the year 1947 defining the territorial jurisdiction of the University.
The university functioned mainly as an affiliating body. In 1949, it took over the management of the undergraduate Department of Law from Ravenshaw College, Cuttack. In 1956, it opened the post-graduate Department of Geology in Ravenshaw College Campus and the University College of Engineering, Burla, Sambalpur. A research Department of Rural Economics and Sociology was started the same year. In 1957, two new post graduate departments in Philosophy and Sanskrit were established at Cuttack. In 1958, the post-grad departments of Psychology, Statistics, Political Science and Anthropology were also established. The University took over the Post-graduate Department of History from Ravenshaw College in the year 1959. Post-Graduate studies in Zoology and Commerce were introduced in 1960 and 1962. The Research Department of Rural Economics and Sociology was established in 1956. Post-Graduate courses in Applied Economics were started in the year 1963.
The jurisdiction of Utkal University, which earlier covered the whole Orissa, was redefined in the new legislation. Utkal University, in its new campus at Vani Vihar, opened few other Post-Graduate Departments such as Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, and Botany during the years 1966-69. The Department of Sociology and Labour Welfare was started in 1970. The Department of Geography was opened in 1970. The Post-Graduate Department of Law was started in the year 1973.
The Department of Geology was shifted to Vani Vihar in 1977. In the year 2001, the M.Sc. Computer Science course started up. Post Graduate Department of Biotechnology started in the year 2002 that offers M.Sc. Biotechnology.
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