Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan is all set to visit the Oxford University and attend a lecture and dinner hosted by the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies (OCHS).
The 68-year-old actor will be received by Oxford’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Andrew Hamilton, and Lord Navnit Dholakia, the Chair of the Board of Governors of the OCHS, university sources told .
He will also visit scholars and students at the OCHS, the Bodleian Library, and Trinity College.
The sources said that Bachchan will discuss the university’s long-standing links with India, the university’s plans to strengthen its relationship with India and the developing field of Hindu studies at Oxford.
Bachchan will also attend the OCHS Distinguished Ford Lecture by Rachel Dwyer, Professor of Indian Cultures and Cinema at SOAS, University of London. The actor will give a response to the lecture and answer questions from the audience.
Professor Andrew Hamilton, Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University, said, "As one of India’s greatest actors and producers, Amitabh Bachchan is in a unique position to offer the benefit of his experience.
"We look forward to welcoming Mr Bachchan to Oxford and I look forward in particular to discussing with him how we can strengthen our understanding of India and our links with it."
Shaunaka Rishi Das, Director of the OCHS, said, "The wonderful combination of Bollywood icon, Hindu Studies, and Oxford University is a sign of our times. This lecture and dinner is the OCHS’s way of acknowledging and honouring Mr Bachchan’s contribution to modern Indian culture."
"It is a great honour to be received so warmly by this ancient and renowned University. I am particularly struck by the long-standing and profound links between India and Oxford, and how, through the OCHS, the field of Hindu Studies is flourishing here. I hope that my visit may serve to nurture this important relationship," said Bachchan before the visit.
The actor is in the UK to launch his celebrity voice blogging service, which already has 2.5 million subscribers. The Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies is a Recognised Independent Centre of the University of Oxford. The principal aim of the Centre is the study of Hindu culture, religion, languages, literature, philosophy, history, arts and society, in all periods and in all parts of the world.
The University of Oxford has long-standing connections with India, dating to 1579, when Father Thomas Stephens, from New College, was the first recorded Englishman to visit India.
Ties have strengthened through time, with the creation of the Boden Chair in Sanskrit in 1832 and the arrival of Oxford’s first Indian students in 1871.(PTI)