Professor Kireet Joshi
- 1931 - Born 10th August.
- 2014 - Died 14th September.
- 1953 - Awarded gold medal and Vedanta prize for having stood 1st class 1st at the M.A. examination. He studied Philosophy and Law in Bombay University.
- 1955 - Selected for the IAS.
- 1956 - Posted as Assistant Collector of Surat, Gujarat.
- 1956 - In November, he resigned from the IAS in order to study and practise the Integral Yoga of Sri Aurobindo at Pondicherry.
- 1956-76 - Remained engaged in the Yogic practice and intensive study of Sri Aurobindo’s and Mother’s works as also vast literature of Indian and Western Philosophy, history and culture.
- In addition, his main activities included the following:
- 1958 - Appointed Registrar of Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education, of the Ashram at Pondicherry.
He participated in a number of experiments in education at Pondicherry under the direct guidance of the Mother, where the theme of Integral Education was worked in detail.
- 1972 - A new system of education had taken shape and this system came to be admired and studied both by Indian and Western educationists. During all these years, Kireet Joshi played an important role in developing and spreading the message of Integral education both in India and abroad.
Government of India appointed three visiting Committees under the chairmanship of eminent educationists like Dr. C.D. Deshmukh, Dr. R.R. Diwakar and Dr. Siddhartha to study the integral system of education, and the Government of India accorded recognition to Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education, Pondicherry, which had developed the system right from the Kindergarten to Postgraduate studies.
- 1958-76 - Professor of Sri Aurobindo International Centre and taught Integral Philosophy, Integral Psychology and Indian culture. He also taught students at various levels, - Kindergarten, primary, secondary, graduation and post-graduation.
He also wrote educational materials for history on the basis of Sri Aurobindo’s “The Ideal of Human Unity” and “The Human Cycle”, as also in the light of Jawahar Lal Nehru’s “Discovery of India”.
He also conducted studies in Sri Aurobindo’s The Life Divine and Synthesis of Yoga and held several seminars of scholars and experts in order to share with larger number of people the results of his research.
- 1976 - Prime Minister Indira Gandhi requested him to advise the Government of India, particularly, to impart dimension of value-education to the entire education system.Subsequently, he was appointed Educational Adviser to the Government of India.
During his tenure in the Government of India, the following special contributions made by him are noted briefly below:
- 1976 - He was appointed in, Member-Secretary of the National Committee on Vishwabharati, under the Chairmanship of Dr. K.L. Shrimali. Subsequently, he was instrumental in redesigning and redrafting of the bill for Vishwa Bharati University, Shantiniketan.
----He developed the idea of Indira Gandhi National Open University as also of Pondicherry University. Subsequently, both these activities came to be established, and Bills for both of them were drafted by him.
- 1981 - A report was submitted to the Government of India under his Chairmanship on Training of Teachers in the Light of Value-oriented Education.
- 1981 - He was appointed Secretary of Auroville International Advisory Council, which consisted of the Union Minister of External Affairs, Director-General of UNESCO, Minister of Culture of Bulgaria and Shri J.R.D. Tata.
He was responsible for the establishment of Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Educational Research at Auroville; he provided leadership to projects of research which have been working on the themes of The Aim of Life, The Good Teacher and The Good Pupil and Mystery and Excellence of Human Body.
- 1982-85 - He was also Member-Secretary of National Commission for Teachers (for school education) and National Commission for Teacher (higher education), which submitted two voluminous reports to the Government of India.
He developed several original ideas connected with teacher education in the country, and his recommendation for the establishment of an autonomous council for teacher education has ultimately resulted in the setting up of the Council.
- 1981-90 - He was a Member of the University Grants Commission and made valuable contributions to the development of the concepts of autonomy and accountability as also to the development of new methodologies of education in the tertiary system.
He also emphasised the need for physical education and stress on national spirit of discipline through NCC, NSS and sports activities.
He developed the concepts of autonomous colleges and proposed a number of innovations so as to provide right place to spiritual values and cultural understanding through aesthetic studies. He also proposed schemes through which status of teachers in higher education could be raised.
He established contacts with Youth organisations of the country and spread among them the importance of Indian culture.
He also promoted the idea and practice of value-based system of management and the need to establish close links between spiritual values and values related to productivity and work ethos.
He advocated the idea that institutes of technology and management should provide foundation courses in humanities and value-oriented education.
- 1976-88 - Member of the Central Advisory Board of Education.
- Kireet Joshi was Managing Trustee of The Mother’s Institute of Research from 1977-2001, and under his guidance a task was undertaken to translate from French thirteen volumes of “Mother’s Agenda” in Hindi, Bengali, Oriya, Gujarati, and some other Indian languages.
- 1981-90 - Considering the importance of philosophical studies in the task of the promotion of Indian culture, he played a major role in the establishment and development of the Indian Council of Philosophical Research. He shouldered the responsibilities of Member-Secretary of this Council, during which Indian philosophical tradition came to be encouraged and supported through original research and publication programme.
- 1981-90 - He assisted Professor D.P. Chattopadhyaya, the foremost Indian philosopher of the country, in formulating a National Project on History of Indian Science, Philosophy and Culture, and worked as its Member-Secretary during its formative period.
- 1987-93 - Considering the importance of Vedic knowledge, he initiated and developed Rashtriya Veda Vidya Pratisthan and served as its Founder Member-Secretary. He organised national and regional meetings of Vedic scholars and promoted the recording of Vedic recitations of various Vedic Shakhas. He also framed and implemented scheme of financial assistance to Vedapathis and also for providing scholarships to students of the Veda and Vedic knowledge. He secured form the Government of India an endowment of Rs. 7crores for the Rashtriya Veda Vidya Pratishthan, as a result of which the Pratisthan has been able to develop a number of activities connected with Vedic research and various cultural aspects of the Vedic tradition.
1976, 1980, 1984, 1985 and 1988- He was a member of India’s delegation to UNESCO’s conferences.
He has made valuable contributions to the field of education at international level.
- 1976-78 - He was elected Vice-president of International Commission on Education at Geneva for a period of two years.
- 1983-87 - He was Chairman of UNESCO Committee on International Education.
- 1986-90 - He was Vice-Chairman of the UNESCO Institute of Education, Hamburg.
- 1983- He was concurrently appointed Special Secretary to the Government of India. He was responsible for programmes and activities relating to all aspects of education, particularly, in relation to higher education, youth services, UNESCO affairs and language development.
- 1987 - In order to develop studies in Hindi at national and international levels, he proposed a massive programme of training of teachers in Hindi and initiated and developed the concept of International Hindi University, Wardha.
A National Committee on Hindi was constituted under his Chairmanship, which submitted a comprehensive report on various aspects relating to the promotion of Hindi in the country. He also made valuable contributions to the promotion of Hindi as the official language.
- 1984-86 - In the field of Sanskrit, he guided the activities of Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan and was its Vice-Chairman.
He framed new constitutions for Sri Lal Bahadur Shastri Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha, New Delhi and Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha, Tirupathi. Subsequently, he played a crucial role in getting both these institutions recognised as deemed universities.
He made schemes for the promotion of studies in Sanskrit in different universities of the country and for establishment of several Sanskrit Pathashalas and institutions related to the promotion of Sanskrit and Sanskrit Vidyapeethas in different parts of the country. He was for several years a Member of the Board which makes recommendations for President’s Certificate of Honour for scholars in Sanskrit, Pali, Prakrit, Arabic and Persian.
He made special contributions to promote the synthesis of science and spirituality, and he was the Chief Organiser of a major national Seminar on Yoga, Science and Man, which for the first time brought at the national level scientists and practitioners of Yoga to come in one large assembly. He was also one of the editors, along with Dr. D.S. Kothari, for producing a volume containing the proceedings of this Seminar.
- 1982 - The Institute of Advanced Studies at Shimla was redesigned under the recommendations of the Kriplani Committee of which Dr. Kireet Joshi was the Member-Secretary. This report had specially emphasised the need for interdisciplinary studies and advancement of the synthesis of various disciplines of knowledge.
- 1983-89 - He was Member of the Executive Board of this Institute of Advanced Studies at Shimla
- 1981 and 1990 - The theme of value-oriented education came to be developed in the country largely because of the leadership provided by him and through various national and regional conferences, which he organised throughout the country.
- 1992 - A national conference was organised which decided to establish Value Education Centre, and Kireet Joshi continues to be the Founder-Chairman of this Centre.
He has supported programmes of child education and advocated that the child should be the centre not only of the educational system but of the whole nation. He provided guidance and impetus to the Bal Bhavan movement in the country.
- 1974-77 - Member of the Children’s Film Society.
- 1977-2001 - Kireet Joshi was Managing Trustee of The Mother’s Institute of Research from, and under his guidance a task was undertaken to translate from French thirteen volumes of “Mother’s Agenda” in Hindi, Bengali, Oriya, Gujarati, and some other Indian languages.
- 1993-98 - During the five years, he organised twelve working groups and a number of seminars, conferences, and workshops in different parts of the country. Extraction of knowledge from the Vedic Samhitas, Upanishads and the Gita as also study of Yoga as science and linking the Vedic Yoga with the entire tradition of Yoga right up to Sri Aurobindo have been the central focus of his research work. He organised a number of youth camps in different parts of the country where the results of the research have been diffused among a large number of youths. A large number of scholars and others are also participating in the programmes through publications and correspondence.
He also recently formulated, in conjunction with several educational institutions, a National Agenda for Education which provides a detailed outline of the way in which the present system of education in the country can be radically altered so as to unite the Indian spiritual and cultural heritage with the contemporary contributions of the modern world.
He has also undertaken the programme of clinical research in Ayurvedic treatment with the help of eminent allopathic and ayurvedic practitioners.
Kireet Joshi has written on a number of subjects connected with culture, science, spirituality, yoga and education.
- 1989 - He is recipient of award of the Indian Council for Child Education for outstanding contribution in this field.
- 1989 - He is also recipient of the National Citizen’s Award.
- 1996 - The degree of D.Litt (Honoris Causa) was conferred upon him by Rahstriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha, Tirupati.
- 1997 - He was awarded Sewa Ratna Award set up in the memory of Parmacharya of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham.
- 1998-2000 - He was nominated recently as a Member of the Indian delegation by the Government of India to participate in the International Conference of UNESCO to be held at Paris on 5th October, as also in November.
- 1999-2004 - He was appointed as Chairman of Auroville Foundation in March, for a period of four years.
- 2000-06 - He was Chairman of Indian Council of Philosophical Research.
- 2006-08 - he was Editorial Fellow of the Project of History of Indian Science, Philosophy and Culture (PHISPC).
- 2008-2010 - He was also formally Educational Advisor to the Chief Minister of Gujarat .
- 2009 - He was appointed as first executive chairperson of the Gujarat Educational Innovations Commission (GEIC).
Gujarat Educational Innovations Commission Bill was passed.
- 2010 - Onwards he was at Sri Aurobindo Ashram at Pondicherry, engaged in the tasks of research and guidance in themes related to ‘Science and Spirituality’ and ‘Spiritual Education’.
- 2014 - January to September, battle with cancer, left his body on September 14.