|M. C. Das College, Sonai - a profile|
Rabindra Nath Tagore, the poet of world-wide fame, preferred imparting education in a homely and naturally serene, sweet and charming surrounding -where the learners would feel quite at home and would feel free to be naturally encouraged to learn things of day-to day importance. Shantiniketan that Rabindra Nath brought into being, is such an institution in which classes are held in open space as if directly in the lap of nature. Learning in the lap of nature was common in ancient India. The teaching- learning process pursued in the ancient Indian heritage-based open school amidst natural beauty and charm was quite an effective one. It can, therefore, be said that nature-based surroundings is quite ideally proper to find an educational institution in. Madhab Chandra Das College, now a name in the arena of education, stands in such a setting that is sure to infuse aesthetic sense in the inner core of the sensitive viewers, though classes are not held in the open here.
Rural Sonai area encompasses huge area covering Bhuban Hill to Sonabarighat and Binnakandi to Palonghat. But this bigger region did not have any institution of higher education and so the local students had to opt for the colleges of Silchar town. Most of the guardians with smaller income could not afford to send their wards to Silchar, and the wards of the few affordable guardians had most often to come back disappointed getting no scope to get admitted to the college of choice. It appeared as a grave problem for the whole area which drew the attention of some noble minds and so they came forward to effect a permanent solution. On one sunny morning in the early seventies of the previous century those altruistic group of persons got together admidst mass participation and after elaborate discussion and exchange of views the historic resolution to set up a college was unanimously adopted. The long cherished dream of the people, thus, came to be translated into reality.
To give practical shape to the adopted resolution, the leading stalwarts invested their all-out efforts that ultimately resulted in getting the foundation stone of the proposed college building laid on the memorable 28th day of August'1972 by the proverbial teaching giant and strict administrator (now no more) SriHaripada Bhattacharjee - the then Principal of G. C. College, Silchar. It would be wise to respectfully remember those high-souled sons of the soil but for whose sincere service the dream of a college would have remained far beyond the encircled limit of reality. We should now pay homage to them by mentioning their honoured names here:
The College was at first christened as "Sonai College" but it had to be rechristened as Madhab Chandra Das College after the lavish-handed donor of the same name donated Rs. 15,000/- in cash - a considerably bigger sum for that time - in addition to the plot of land on which the East Block of the college building stands. The plot of land on which the West Block stands was of course, donated by Late Kala Mia Mazumder and others.
The college began its journey with only a few students in both H.S. and degree level at the N.G.H.S. School building in the morning shift. The classes were permanently shifted in 1975 to the present site with Jonab Tajamul Ali Mazumder as the Principal who did immensely to manage the affairs of the College through all odd situation with his habitual boldness and administrative dexterity.
The college first got affiliated to the Gauhati University in 1980-81 and the government of Assam was pleased to bring it under Deficit System of Grants-in-Aid in 1985. However, when the Assam University came into existence, the college came under its affiliation in 1994.Subsequently U.G.C.'s 2(F) and 12(B) status was granted to the college in 1997 and with this the college became officially competent to enjoy monetary grants from U.G.C. On its way to gradual advancement the college now can boast of having all the three streams of study in its fold, though its sojourn began with only Arts stream.
The year 2004 turned out to be a significant milestone in the college history. In that year the Peer Team of the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) under the chairmanship of broad-hearted Dr. Basudeb Chatterjee (expired in 2010 in a road accident) visited the college and accredited it with B-grade status. The term of 5 years has already expired and the college administration is taking preparation to invite the NAAC-team for fresh accreditation.
The college with 70% SC, OBC & MOBC students is on the track to enjoy gradual development. But much more have been left to be done. The road ahead is not smooth and every positive effort from all concerned has to be exploited to reach the target of making this institution a shining light of learning.