You cannot be a “wellrounded architect“ unless you have learnt the basics of Vastu Shastra -the foundation on which traditional Indian architecture study rests, believes IIT Kharagpur . The country's oldest and largest IIT will introduce the rudiments to firstand second-year undergraduate architecture students this August, while those pursuing postgraduation or research scholars in infrastructure will get a detailed grounding on the subject.
As a concept, Vastu Shastra did not figure in the architecture and infrastructure syllabi. But faculty members -while looking at re-orienting teaching-learning for the coming academic session -feel that since students are being taught concepts prevalent in the West, there is no reason why they shouldn't be conversant with ancient Indian architectural traditions. They believe that Vastu studies are not rooted in religion. Instead, ancient Indian concepts have a scientific basis and introducing students to these will open up new vistas, they say .
The Ranbir and Chitra Gupta School of Infrastructure Design and Management (RCGSIDM) of IIT-Kgp held its first workshop on the subject, `Vastu in Global Perspective', in the city on Sunday , attracting Vastu experts from across the country . “Across the globe there is a renewed interest in ancient Indian knowledge. So, it is natural that we will tweak our syllabus to include Vastu in architecture and infrastructure classes,“ said Joy Sen, head of RCGSIDM and a faculty at the architecture department.
Vastu will be introduced in graded modules to UG architecture students, who are taught courses like basic design and history of architecture. At the PG level, solar principles, sacred diagrams, 9 circuit placements or the nabagraha mandal, sacred altars and design semiotics and semantics are some of the things students will be taught. “For PG infrastructure course, we will have BTech students from departments of architecture, civil, electrical, mechanical and even management graduates. So, at this level, we will have a greater variety to address,“ Sen said.