Jahwar Sircar

Jawhar Sircar

Personal Specialization:

The historical and anthropological analysis of religious phenomena in autochthonous cults like the worship of ‘Dharma Thakur’ in the western regions of West Bengal.

Was Project Director of an anthropological ‘Field Programme’, for over half a decade under the Indian Council for Social Sciences & Research, that involved field work in 78 villages, spread in Burdwan, Birbhum, Bankura, Midnapore, Hooghly and Howrah.

‘Making sense’ of Indian behaviour and world views as well as oddities, and sensitivities, with reference to their “cultural genes”.

Positing the role of popular media initiatives like Vividh Bharati on Akashvani, and mega serials (like Ramayan and Mahabharat) on DD in the emergence of homogeneity in a sharply heterogeneous nation.

Professional Trainings

* Professional Training Courses Attended Shri Jawhar Sircar - Click here

Honors, Awards and Accolades

* Gold Medal for standing 1st in School Leave in 1970

* Debater Award twice in IAS Academy for standing 1st in 1975

* Silver Medal of GoI for Extraordinary Service in Census Operations        in1982

* British Museum’s Silver Medal for Promoting Museum Reforms in 2011

* Best CEO Award (Two years after joining PB)

* Maulana Jameel Ilyasi Excellency Award – August, 2013

* News Television Network CEO of the Year ENBA 2013

* Institute Of Directors Distinguished Fellowship Award – 2014


* Recently Digital Studio Broadcasting & Production Magazine have put        him among the 10 Most important people In the Broadcasting Industry        along with the heads of Star, India Today, Zee, Sony & NDTV 2016

* Corporate Broadcaster of the Year, Award by Calcutta Management        Association 2016

* Stylish Person of the Year 2016 Conferred by Hindustan Times

Allied Research Work

I have a wealth of materials from my field studies of autochthonous religions, and their dialogue with formal Hinduism, which give valuable leads even though, part of the field data is “dated”.

Delivered the Annual Address to the Asiatic Society of Kolkata, in January 2014, where I spoke before a packed audience of senior scholars, on ‘The Role of Brahmanical Class in the Unification of India’.

It presents an unusual postulate, that the sum total of Brahmanical interventions on the Indian sub-continent, for two and a half millennia, reveals some traces of a ‘grand design.’ It is fairly balanced and well researched, though it is still to be completed.

I have listed out the ‘tactics’, that may have been used, but the end result has been to forge ‘cultural’ unity amongst disparate nationalities and ethno-linguistic groups, which the British intervention only helped catalyse further.

The Construction of the Hindu Identity in Medieval Western Bengal: The Role of Popular Cults

After decades of work and notings, this is the only work of consequence that I could publish in the preceding 40 years.

The monograph is out of print, but the PDF file is available.

I place a few comments below:

  • Tapan Raychaudhuri of Oxford University:
    “What he (Jawhar Sircar) has given us shows his exceptional analytical power and depth of knowledge in diverse fields. None of us has yet been able to complete what Prof. Niharranjan Ray had intended and started to do — that is, to anthologize the social history of the Bengalis. Jawhar Sircar has the power to do so and take up this monumental task. This monograph has proved it. We hope he will not disappoint us.”
    [Desh, Kolkata, February 2, 2006].
  • Ralph W Nicholas, Prof. Emeritus Anthropology,Chicago Uni :
    “He (Jawhar Sircar) has published a monograph based on his research (Sircar 2005) but the main body of his work remains to be published. He is an outstanding historical and interpretive anthropologist, with a brilliant career in administration standing in the way of his scholarly work. He has wide ranging intellectual engagement in the history of Bengali religion and culture”.
    [Preface to ‘Rites of Spring: Gajan in Village Bengal, Chronicle Books, New Delhi, 2008]
  • Harbans Mukhia, Professor of History, JNU:
    “Your IDSK monograph’s scholarship should be the envy of any university professor and your commitment to both asking a fresh set of questions and exploring the problematic in all its depth is just magnificent. I had heard of you as a fine scholar, but hadn’t an occasion to read any of your writings. I am glad that I started with this one. 7 This marvellous piece and its depth and originality truly overwhelms. What a loss to the academia!”