• iconUniversity of Mysore, Manasagangotri, Mysuru-06


The prasaranga of the Mysore University will shortly be 100 years old, and may be said to be in its prime. In the last 8 decades it has steadily grown called beyond all expectations. It was named by so by the poet laureate of Karnataka Dr. K.V. Puttappa, popularly known as Kuvempu. It was during the period when he was the Vice- Chancellor of the Mysore University that the Prasaranga received all the patronage that it deserved. To-day it may be described as the Rashtrakavi’s dream come true.

When the University of Mysore took its birth in 1916, its first Chancellor, Sri Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV, the then Maharaja of Mysore, said in his inaugural address to the first senate meeting : Our University will also be engaged in diffusing knowledge among that section of my people, who for various reasons, May not be able to participate in the courses and disciplines appointed for the regular examinations. It is with this object that the scheme provides for the establishment of extension and publication departments. I trust that the University will soon be able to develop fully this side of its activities with due regard to the practical needs of the country.”

The motto of this University has been Na hi jnanena sadrisam – knowledge is non pareil. . It is the dissemination of knowledge even among those who could not enter the portals of institutions of higher of higher learning that was obviously one of the objectives underlined by the Maharaja, Inspired by his message, the University started a scheme of lectures under the title ‘University Extension Lectures.’ But these were invariably in English and were held either in Banglore or Mysore, the two cities which were under the jurisdiction of the university. The common man was, however, deprived of the benefit of these lectures since they were invariably delivered in a foreign tongue. Only the intelligentia could attend them and benefit by them. Even the educated persons of other cities were denied the privilege. Such was the state of affairs for a long while. It was only two decades later that the Maharaj ’s desire came to be fulfilled.

We may here consider the origin of the name Prasaranga. In his booklet Prasarang Sri Kuvempu gives a detailed definition of it. He enumerates the three district duties of the University and the three wings (angas) under which theses duties are to be performed. These duties are Research, Teaching and the Extension of Knowledge . The Research Wing, he explains is the crowing part of the function of a University. It is concerned with post- graduate studies and research, and the advancement of learning. The second is the Teaching Wing, which he compares to the two hands of the body. According to him, its function is to teach the present generation of the people how to live as cultured, civilized and educated citizens competing on an equal footing with other peoples of the world. But far more important than these two wings, as the poet laureate believes , is the third one, which has to deal with Extension Lectures and Publications. To this wing Sri Kuvempu gave the name of Prasaranga. This, as he rightly points out, is the very heart of the University, where it pulsates with life.

In 1932 the University took up the publishing of Prabuddha Karnataka, the Kannada Journal the used to be published since 1919 by the Karnataka Sangha of the Central College. Like BMS, the Prabhuddha Karnataka also had played a remarkable role in fostering the kannada renaissance. Sri A.R. Krishna Shastri, its first editor and founder, encouraged his students and colleagues to write their essays in Kannada, and got them published.

Ex Secretaries of Prasaranga


U. K. Subbrayachar

Th . Su. Shama Rao