Hyderabad: Maulana Azad National Urdu University (MANUU), the country’s first and only Urdu university, conferred Doctor of Letters (D.Litt) to Bollywood actor and superstar Shah Rukh Khan on Monday. He received this honour at MANUU’s 6th convocation function held at the varsity’s sprawling campus here. While accepting the doctorate, Khan said that he felt doubly honoured as his mother came from Hyderabad and his father, a highly educated person, valued education a lot. Recalling some important events in his life, Khan said his father gifted him many things, including a Chess set. “Chess can be a good master. It teaches you how to be cooperative. Even the pawns are important. So don’t ignore the pawns even if you respect the queens,” he said. Khan said that diligence is something one learns from a typewriter, among the things that his father had gifted him. “Practice makes a man perfect. Always try to get perfection in whatever work you undertake,” he said. Addressing the students who received degrees, Khan said life is precious and every moment of life should be spent with dignity. “Whatever you do, do it with dedication. Achieve whatever goal you have set for yourself,” he said.
Mr Sanjiv Saraf, founder of Rekhta Foundation, an internet portal that is playing key role in the revival of interest in Urdu language, was also conferred with Honoris Causa. In his address, he described Urdu as one of the most expressive and rich languages of the world and underscored the need to preserve and promote it. “In has the rich heritage of Vedanta and Sufism. This beautiful language is free from religious bigotry and extremism…We all need to save and promote this beautiful and sweet language of India,” he said.
Mr Zafar Sareshwala, MANUU’s chancellor, said that Shah Rukh Khan’s acceptance of invitation for attending the convocation was important. Sareshwala called upon the students to use the university’s degree as a launch pad. He also said that MANUU products should be recognised for their talent and expertise nationally and internationally. “Develop yourself in such a way that people should know you because of MANUU,” he told the students. Dr Mohammad Aslam Parvaiz, Vice-Chancellor of MANUU, recalled that Shah Rukh Khan’s mother and he went to Delhi College. Dr Parvaiz enumerated several achievements of the university since its inception through an Act in Parliament in 1998. He said that promotion of scientific approach and spirit through Urdu was among the aims of the varsity. “Women education is one of the main areas where we focus up on,” he said. The Vice-Chancellor also said that distance education through different centres had pitch-forked MANUU among the centres of excellence which attract talents from across the country.
About 44,235 students in Distance mode were declared given degrees while 2,885 were received graduation and post graduation degrees. On the other, those who were awarded Ph D and M Phil degrees stood at 276. The event began and ended with singing of the national anthem.