Front row from the right:
Prof. Subrata Das and Prof. Pradip Sukul,
both are PhD. in Chemistry and Associate Professors for NIT.
The gentleman standing to your left besides me is A-san.
My trip to Bihar, the rich and fertile land of The Mother Ganga, was possible all thanks to A-san, who runs a patent management company in Pune, and his two university alumni Prof. Subrata Das and Prof. Pradip Sukul, both are PhD. in Chemistry and Associate Professors for NIT (National Institute of Technology) Patna, who kindly arranged and took care of our visit. I am sincerely grateful to the opportunity.
On 9th October, roughly a hundred students attended my lecture, which consists of plenty of photos, video, and graphs, introducing Japanese culture, food, history, cities, price and salary standards, Indian population, etc. My purpose was letting the audience take a flight from the auditorium and fly on a short trip to Japan. I also introduced the curry craze in Japan and a long-lasting Baahubali sensation:
When Katappa-san killed Baahubali-san: SS Rajamouli’s films are the latest fan favourite in Japan - Scroll.in
Students were inquisitive about the way Japanese people get married, like how they meet, who will spend the expenses of the wedding ceremony. We had a boy who knew quite a lot of Hayao Miyazaki's animation works, including My Neighbor Totoro, Castle in the Sky (known as 天空の城ラピュタ in Japan.) Another student asked if there is discrimination or racism against Indian residents. Also, the first and only Indian enka singer Chadha's "Omokage-no-hito" played on their high-quality sound system was highly appreciated.
In the afternoon, a student's question raised that if it is necessary for him to look Japan, whose GDP is declining and the population is shrinking over the years, instead of the super powerful nation America, the dragon China, and the next power India, triggered a very healthy discussion in the auditorium. I understand his point very well. Still, I sincerely hope the top-notch people like NIT Patna students come to Japan and build a robust bridge between two nations to develop together.
While I did not have time to visit the museum and other attractions in the city during two days visit, I enjoyed the refreshing view by strolling along the Ganges River bank right located behind NIT Patna campus from the day one.
Hindi is widely spoken as a native language in Bihar, as well as Bhojpuri. Faculties and students of NIT Patna are mainly from Bihar, and neighbouring Assam, West Bengal; I also met a girl student from as far as Andra Pradesh.
NIT Patna's placement manager told me that the university occasionally invites the leading researchers (Chemistry, Physics, etc.) from overseas, often the United States, for a week-long workshop. Patna has the nation's another leading university IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) also, and both institutes are closely associated with each other in the field of education and researches.
The development in Bihar is considered being relatively lagging behind rest of the Indian states. However, Bihar is also well-known for producing the highest number of IAS (Indian Administrative Service) officers, and it was apparent from many advertisements and signboards of "Mathematics" tuitions on my way to/from Buddhagaya since math is the critical subject to succeed in the examination.
Coming back to NIT Patna, I hope and look forward to that students and researchers of NIT will seek Japan for their destination of higher study or job opportunities, and I feel it is now a part of my responsibilities too to share them any potentially essential information time to time. In line with this and out of my curiosity, I searched what are happenings in the city related to Japan, and found the news that the Chief Minister Nitesh Kumar visited Japan this February to invite investment to Bihar.
Japan visit: Nitish proposes sister-state pact between Nara and Bodh Gaya - Hindustan Times
Talks over lunch and dinner with Prof. Das and Prof. Sukul were one of the most memorable moments of my visit to Patna. Prof. Sukul shared many funny experiences in Japan as he had lived in Tsukuba Gakuen-Toshi, Ibaraki Prefecture, for about two years for his research a couple of years back. Prof. Das, on the other hand, did not hesitate to express his keen interest in Japan repeatedly after my lecture, and I am sincerely grateful to all his kind words.
Another sweet moment was the walk to Ganga bank and NIT Patna campus with girl students who voluntarily guided me through. We shared our thoughts, clicked many pictures, and exchanged WhatsApp contacts and named the group "Team Patna."
I believe someday soon, I will return Patna, the city I have fallen in love.
:: ASKSiddhi articles on Patna and Buddhagaya visit (in Japanese) ::
10月9日、ビハール州のNITパトナで講義します 07 Oct 2018
プネーからパトナへ、1400キロメートルをひとっ飛び 08 Oct 2018
パトナNITでの講義の模様、クイックレポート：「日本で博士研究したい」 09 Oct 2018
ブッダガヤーのマハーボーディ寺院で、何もかもを飲み込むような圧倒的なインド世界を想う 10 Oct 2018
心の故郷にただいま、ブッダガヤー1泊2日滞在記 11 Oct 2018
心の故郷ブッダガヤー1泊2日訪問記：写真編 12 Oct 2018
インディラ・ガーンディー国際空港ターミナル3の様子、機内食、その他あれこれ：写真編 13 Oct 2018
ビハール州パトナとブッダガヤーを訪問して：まとめ 14 Oct 2018