Shantaram Balwant Mujumdar
Award Name : Padma Bhushan
Year of Award : 2012
Award for : Literature
Location : Kolhāpur, Maharashtra, India
Shantaram Balwant Mujumdar is the Founder and President of Symbiosis Society, a multinational educational and cultural centre. A distinguished academician and educationist, he is also the Chancellor of Symbiosis International University. He was awarded the Padma Shri in year 2005 and Padma Bhushan in year 2012. He was born on July 31, 1935 in Gadhinglaj, Kolhapur. He had his school education at Gadhinglaj and college education at Kolhapur and Pune. In his Master's Degree (M.Sc.) in Botany, he stood first class first with distinction in Pune University. He obtained his Doctorate (Ph.D.) in Microbiology from Pune University. He has written many standard books and published several papers in national and international books. He was also a member of the Executive Council of the Pune University for 9 years. Through his experiences at Fergusson College, he realized the difficulties faced by foreign students, particularly those from Afro Asian countries, studying in Pune. Inspired by the ideals of 'Vishwa Bharati' of Gurudeo Tagore and 'Antar Bharati' of Sane Guruji, and with a desire to help foreign students and offer them a 'Home away from Home', in 1971 he established an organization called Symbiosis, which means 'living together of two different organisms for mutual benefit'.
Symbiosis today comprises of 37 institutes
imparting training in diverse disciplines. It has over 45,000 students who hail
from all states of India and from 60 different countries. In 2006 the
University Grants Commission, Government of India renamed the University as
"Symbiosis International University". Dr. Mujumdar now intends to
strive towards converting Symbiosis University into an International University
and also set up a Vishwa Gram, a Global Village on its university campus -
where foreign and Indian students can live together in hostels, learn together
in classrooms, play together on sports fields and eat together in cafeterias.