A decade back, I attended Tilak Maharashtra Vidyapeeth(TMV) in Pune to study Indology. Indology is study of India. In the past, it was referred as oriental studies. Study of Philosophy, Indology, Sanskrit was in vogue few decades ago, like information technology these days. Indology as a branch came into existence when foreign rulers of India such as British, in 17th/18th century, discovered Sanskrit language and India’s rich cultural references within the huge corpus of ancient texts. Many scholars from India, of international repute contributed in Indology. Research activities were at their peak which advanced our understanding of the past. Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute(BORI) was once such place, which is soon celebrating centenary of its existence.
During my course at TMV, I experienced some such fervor in the research and paper presentation on findings in various conferences, and memorial lectures etc. Today, I wanted to write a bit about Brihanmaharashtra Prachyavidya Parishad(बृहन्महाराष्ट्र प्राच्यविद्या परिषद, BMPP) which is the organization responsible for conducting bi-annual conference to discuss state of Indology and various aspects. All India Oriental Conference(AIOC) is national level organization with a similar goal and is much older organization. They also are responsible for conducting bi-annual conference since more than half century now. The scope of BMPP is reviewing studied in Indology in greater Maharashtra and also as far as location of the conference is concerned, also the participants. The paper presentations, of course, are not limited to greater Maharashtra. BMPP was formed in 1995 and its first conference was held in 1996.
I was fortunate to attend once such event of BMPP back in 2005. The location was Bhopal. One of the highlights of BMPP conferences is a special focus on area where the conference is taking place. As the name of the conference suggests, its extent is greater Maharashtra. Now greater Maharashtra is interesting concept. Historically, current state of Maharashtra extended into neighboring areas, and it created interesting mix of culture. Whenever BMPP conference happens in such places, it is very interesting to know this cultural mix and impact, talked about in those special sessions. During Bhopal conference, the special session focused on Malwa history and culture. After the conference, I along with few others also managed to visit historical sites of Bhimbetka caves and few others nearby places from Bhopal. More about them later in another blog.
This year is another year of conference of BMPP, which is 11th such conference. It is being held during Dec 10 to 12 in Amaravati in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra. The papers will be presented in following seven domains: Ved & Avesta, Grammar & Linguistics, History and Archaeology, Ancient Science and Technology, History and Culture of Vidarbha (north Maharashtra). For the further details regarding participation, you can send email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am planning to attend. Let’s see how it goes.