“Buddhist Studies for Contemporary Issues in India” -- Reports on the Second National “IIBS Conference – 2013”

“Buddhist Studies for Contemporary Issues in India” -- Report on the Second National Indian Institute of Buddhist Studies (IIBS) Conference-2013

Bahujan Improvement Trust’s Indian Institute of Buddhist Studies (IIBS) established since 2008 organized its Second National “IIBS Conference – 2013” on 23rd March 2013, Saturday at IIBS Pune Campus. The main theme of the conference was “Buddhist Studies for Contemporary Issues in India”.

The sub themes were as follows:-
1) Indo-Tibetan Defense Issues and Role of Buddhists
2) International Students in India and their Issues
3) Women Issues and Buddhist Perspective
4) Socio-Economic Issues of Buddhist Society in India
5) Tipitaka Text and its relation to Contemporary Issues
6) Issues in Promoting Buddhist Studies in India

Research Scholars and Students from various faculties such as Social Sciences, Buddhist Studies, Pali and even Professionals were encouraged to submit research papers.

Post-Graduate Students (M.A. M.Phil.), Ph.D. scholars and Professionals from various institutions such as Delhi University (Vietnamese Buddhist Monk), Mumbai University, Pune University, Babasaheb Dr. Ambedkar Aurangabad University, Banaras Hindu University (BHU) and Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) participated / submitted their research papers. Total 22 research papers were accepted out of which with 13 people physically presented papers in the conference. Including IIBS staff and genuine participants the conference had 25 people together for such scholarly academic event.

Prof. Dr. Arun Dalvi, Head, Department of Defense Studies, University of Pune a senior person in the university system and research methodology professor was the Chief Guest.

Dr. Yojana Bhagat from Pali Department, University of Mumbai chaired one session.
Dr. Nilima Chawhan Assistant Professor at IIBS Pune chaired one session.
Prof. Dr. Arun Dalvi’s 45 minute lecture about Defense Issues and Buddhist Role was very informative and interesting. His analysis started with reference to Karl Haushofer a German Geo-politician’s role in Second World War. His lecture also stressed that Japanese have very less military budget compared to American military budget; still Japan exits as a strong nation. He talked about Indo-Tibet issue and how Buddhist Oriented Diplomacy with China can help. Finally he concluded that people talk about peace and no-war but to achieve that one needs to cultivate Buddhist Understanding.

The conference was interactive and people asked lot of questions. Everybody got time to express his/her views. There were 3 sessions in total. Registration, Morning Tea, 1st Session, Tea Break, 2nd Session, Lunch Break and 3rd Session (served evening Tea without break to save time).

The papers related to "Rape" and "Old Age Homes" by two young women scholars were very impressive. They gave lot of references from Pali literature and could relate with the contemporary issues. Other papers were also good and very informative. The scholars had put hard efforts to prepare their papers.

Highly qualified women participation from “Ambedkar Buddhist Tradition” was high in numbers in the conference. In my opinion this is the very progressive and positive side of the fastest growing and most influential Buddhist Tradition in India.

The Vietnamese Buddhist Monk from Delhi University was very active in Question Answer session. His questions brought more interest and wider view of the international community to the Buddhist Tradition for the participants.

Pravin Bhalesain (M.Tech. IT, IIT Roorkee)
Founder President
Bahujan Improvement Trust’s
Indian Institute of Buddhist Studies
Survey No. 17/4, Suyog, Mangal Magar,
Wakad Road, Thergaon, Pune - 411033
Phone: +91-9145507350
Email: pbhale@gmail.com / iibsdirector@gmail.com
Web: www.iibs.edn.net.in