Considering the international fame of the ancient Taxila University (6th-5th century BC), historians have long been demanding revival of this seat of learning. Once again a call has been made for revival of the university. Since Taxila is situated in the Gandhara region, which had long been a cradle of civilisation, especially of Buddhism and the culture associated with it, it will attract tourists from all over the world, including from Buddhist countries. People from Pakistan and other countries visit the place to see the ancient university and the glory of the Gandhara civilisation. The setting up of an institution of higher education at Taxila will attract students from far and wide, thereby giving more prominence to the country.
Chinese travellers Fahien and Huein Tsang have mentioned the grandeur of the capital city of Gandhara and of the international university. Taxila, known as Takshila in ancient times, and the Gandhara area are spotted with Buddhist monasteries and stupas. The region needs to be introduced to the world in a better way given the international fame that it enjoys. Pakistan is situated in a region where civilisation has thrived from ancient times. There is the Indus Valley Civilisation. Historians agree that the history of the sub-continent begins from the Indus Valley Civilisation. Moen Jo Daro in Sindh was the capital of the southern part of the Indus Valley country and Taxila the capital of its northern part, known as Harappa. Together with many other cultures and civilisations, an Indo-Greek culture flourished in the region before the Christian era. Renowned grammarian Panini was born in the region and he taught at the Taxila University.
The revival of Taxila University will be a great success. Several years ago, an ancient university was revived in a neigbouring country where local teachers and students and those from foreign countries teach and study. A few years back, a politician of the sub-continent had described Taxila as being situated on the southern bank of the Ganges. A ridiculous consequence of being ignorant of history.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 29th, 2021.
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