VIDYASAGAR EVENING COLLEGE
Established in the year 1961
Affiliated to University of Calcutta | NAAC Accredited
College working hour 2:00 P.M. to 8:15 P.M.
Vidyasagar Evening College
Address : 39, Sankar Ghosh Lane, Kolkata-700006.
Phone : +91 033 2241 9508, +91 33 6459 7118
Email : vidyasagarevening@yahoo.in
B.Com. IInd Year (Hons. & General) classes to commence from 8th August, 2017

Department of Commerce - Overview

The journey of the Department of Commerce began with the establishment of Calcutta College of Commerce at 29 Mirzapur Street, in 1920 or thereabouts and was run by a College Council. Around 1922 the Vice-Principal of the college Sh J C Mitra expressed a desire for its amalgamation with Vidyasagar College as it needed “more extensive and better accommodation for its further development”, which was considered and accepted by the Governing Body of the latter college in its Governing Body meeting dated October 18, 1922. The Governing Body resolved that Calcutta College of Commerce would be part of Vidyasgar College, that the-then Council of the former college “shall cease to exist” and that the powers of management would ipso facto belong to the Governing Body of the latter, “under the name of VIDYASAGAR COLLEGE, COMMERCE DEPARTMENT”. The Governing Body resolved that Commerce Department was “to be located at the buildings of the Vidyasagar College, with liberty to use the same furniture, class rooms, common rooms, library and such other things as may be required for the conduct and management of that department. The class of the Commerce Department would be held from 6 p.m in the evening”. The Governing body also resolved that the Principal of Vidyasagar College would control the “commerce department”. The Vice Principal in charge of Commerce Department who was to be regarded as a Professor of Vidyasagar College “for the purpose of Membership of the Governing Body of Vidyasagar College”.

The Governing Body requested Sh B N Mitra, Solicitor and its Member, to draw up a Deed of Agreement between the Governing Body, Vidyasagar College, and the Calcutta College of Commerce featuring the resolutions of aforementioned meeting.

The Memorandum of Agreement between the Calcutta College of Commerce and Vidyasagar College dated 14th November, 1922 included 9 clauses. Clause 1 transferred the power of management of Calcutta College of Commerce to Governing Body of Vidyasagar College. Clause 2 renamed the Calcutta College of Commerce as Vidyasagar College, Commerce Department. Clause 3 placed the department under authority of the Principal of Vidyasagar College, and the rules and regulations framed by the management for Vidyasagar College “shall mutatis mutandis, apply to the Commercial Department”. Clause 4 made the present Principal of the Calcutta College of Commerce the Vice –Principal of the Commerce Department of Vidyasagar College. According to Clause 5, “the authorities of the Vidyasagar College shall undertake to have it affiliated to the Calcutta University for the Degree of Bachelor of Commerce and in the necessary additional subjects for the intermediate course”. Clause 6 recorded that the Vice-Principal “shall undertake all financial responsibilities for this department and the general department shall not on any account be required to constitute any fund for the upkeep and management of Commerce Department”. Clause 7 made it obligatory for the Commerce Department to pay the General Department the usual charges for electricity, stationery etc. According to Clause 8 “all receipts from the Commercial Department shall be spent or saved for the benefit of the Commerce Department only, and the General Department shall not spend any portion of the income of this department for its requirements, all income from this department being considered to be separate fund.....”.

On March 17, 1923 the Governing Body “read a letter from the inspector of colleges, Calcutta University, to the Principal” wherein it was requested to furnish data to substantiate the financial viability of the department. Inspite of the Governing Body replying in favour of continuing the Commerce Department, the University in a letter dated July 28, 1923 informed about its unwillingness to grant affiliation to the Department. Perhaps the University authorities did not appreciate the fact that the college is for the students who could not pursue studies during daytime although it was a novel exercise, the full implication of which could not be explained by the College authorities.

The refusal of affiliation soon jeopardized the existence of the department and on September 23, 1923 it was resolved “that as Third and Fourth Year Classes were no longer in existence, the application for affiliation of the college upto the B.Com standard that has been made in October last be withdrawn , and that the serving of discharge notices on lecturers mentioned above be sanctioned.”

In December 1924, a committee consisting of J R Banerjee, B N Mitter and B K Ghosh looking into the validity of the Agreement of November 14, 1922 reported that owing to refusal of affiliation by the University of Calcutta the Clause 5 of the agreement has been rendered null and void. Hence the main purpose of the agreement has remained unrealised and “has come to an end”.

On December 20, 1924, J C Mitra replying to the recommendations of the subcommittee stated that the Commerce Department had 54 first year students, and 24 second year students. The income accruing from the tuition fees was between Rs 300/- and Rs 350/-. The Vice-Principal’s salary was Rs 200 per month. Three other lecturers got Rs 75/- each per month. The other expenses amounted to Rs 100/- per month. The monthly expenditure would in no case exceed Rs 550/-. He had paid off the liabilities, and the Governing Body had no liability with regard to the Commerce Department. The Governing Body asked him to arrange for providing Security in war bonds in Government Promissory notes of the actual value of Rs 7,200/-, “or charge on immovable property in Calcutta of the value of Rs 10,000/- to recoup any loss that might be sustained by the college and for which he had undertaken responsibility”.

On January 10, 1925 J C Mitra replied that the Security in War Bond or landed property was not practically feasible. He was expecting a surplus in near future. The staff of the Commerce Department was ready to sign an undertaking that they would not hold Governing Body responsible for payment of their salaries and their emoluments “before the expiration of three years, or before this department becomes self supporting”. The expenses of the administration of the Commerce Department might be curtailed by the Governing Body. “If the deficit still continues for a few months more it may be met by the Vice-principal of the Department as has been done by him in the past”. The Vice-Principal suggested that “he be given leave without pay, and the money thus saved may be used to stave off the deficit”. He was ready to work without pay during the period of his leave. He suggested that the Principal of the Vidyasagar College should also be the Principal of the Commerce Department. “It seems a little anomalous that the Head of the College should stand aloof from a part of his Institution”.

The teachers of Vidyasagar College were not in favour of adding the Commerce Department to the college as they were afraid of drain of slender “Receipts” of the college to sustain an unrecognized and unaffiliated department. However on December 11, 1926 Professor J C Mitra formally informed the Governing Body of his willingness to surrender his rights and title to and specific interest in the Commerce Department if the affiliation materialized. The Governing Body applied to the University in December 1926 for the affiliation of Commerce Department. In May 1927 the Governing Body resolved to make the Principal the head of the Commerce department on an allowance of Rs 100/- per month in accordance with the desire of the University authorities. In July 1927 they had to make some arrangements for the teaching of certain Arts subjects at the “Night Shift”.

Finally in July 1928 when Commerce throughout the world was in doldrums owing to the Great depression, the University granted affiliation to the Commerce Departmentof Vidyasagar College in B.Com.

The Commerce Department was the first non-Government Night College in Commerce in Bengal.

The Commerce College was amalgamated with the General Department on January 1, 1929. In the same year Hariprasad Khandelwal, a student of the Commerce Department stood first in the B.Com Examination. Thus the fame of the department spread far and wide. The low tuition fees, efficient system of coaching, apart from the fact of its being a pioneer institution, attracted students from all parts of India including Burma. The student strength increased from 150 in 1926 to 1434 in 1939-40 and contributed to the status and stability of the department.

It was not only increase in the number of students but such was the reputation of the college that on the Founder’s Day in July 29, 1931, Sir C V Raman while presiding over the meeting praised the authorities of the college for starting the Commerce College.

The recommendation of the University Grants Commission to phased reduction in the Roll Strengths of the affiliated colleges was accepted by the University of Calcutta. The independence of the Evening Section was inevitable. In June 1961 the Evening Section along with the Commerce Department was re-christened as Vidyasagar Evening College.

The robust journey of the department continued and completed 75 years of existence in July 1997. As a part of Platinum Jubilee Celebration a year-long programme covering both academic and extra-academic areas were organized. It included
  • Organization of seminars, symposia etc., with active participation of outstanding personalities in the academic and business worlds
  • Organization of Inter-college Debate and Speech Competitions.
The department has for all these years been an integral, intimate and important part of the College (be it Vidyasagar College or Vidyasagar Evening College). Today the College offers courses in B.Com. (Honours and General) and plans to expand further.

 

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