Political Science


The Department of Political Science of Gauhati University, which was established in the Year 1958, is the oldest Department of this discipline in the region. In the year 2007, the department completed 50 years of its glorious presence with significant contribution towards teaching and research in the discipline of Political Science. The Department has produced hundreds of Ph. D. scholars as well as renowned educationists in the country. The Faculty members of the Department have also earned reputation in the country and abroad through their contribution towards the discipline of Political Science and other related social sciences. The department has introduced Semester System from the academic session 2001-02 with a revised syllabus focusing on the emerging areas in political science like Environment and Political science, Human Rights, Political Economy, Gender Studies, Social and Political Movements, and Shouth Asian studies. A number of students have cleared UGC-NET and many are drawing fellowships from various research including UGC and ICSSR. In its continuous effort to achieve higher echelons of academic performance, the department has achieved recognition from the University Grant Commission (UGC) under the Special Assistance Programmme (SAP) After successfully completing the first phase of UGC-Special Assistance Programmme 2009-2014 (SAP-DRS-I), the Department has been granted UGC-SAP-DRS-II for duration of Five (5) years from 2014 to 2019 and the theme is Democracy and Institutions of Governance in Northeast India.

From humble beginnings as a group of elective subjects taught in the department of Economics in the 1950s, Political Science emerged as a full-fledged department of study, teaching and research in 1958. Under the dynamism and dedicated leadership of Dr. V. Venkata Rao, the founder Head, and his able successors, the department has grown in strength and vitality. At present the department is actively engaged not merely in organizing formal courses of learning in the subject but also in promoting and pursuing study and research on the multifarious ethnic groups, their social and political structures, authority system and to find out to what extent the best in the indigenous traditions could be harmonized with the modern day institutions of governance. The objectives of teaching and research in political Science correspond partly to the general aims of liberal education such as cultivation of maturity of mind, responsible citizenship, and respect for human values. Teaching and training in the professional requirements of the subject enables the alumni to perform competently as teachers, researchers, administrators, legislators and professionals in politics in general, thus bringing theory close to practice.

The Department plans to elevate its status to a leading centre in the field of teaching and research. The principal objectives of the plan are:

Building up networking with Departments of Political Science of affiliated colleges for taking up joint ventures in areas like designing of syllabus, organization of national and international seminars, workshops on research methodology, and training of teachers on recent trends and techniques of Political Science.

To set up a Policy Research Center to address different issues concerning planning and decision making in diverse areas of public concern relevant to Northeast region.

To provide wider freedom of choice to students in selecting areas of study through interdisciplinary approach so that it could foster multi-cultural understanding in the context of national framework. Set up cell for the study of Electoral Politics and Behaviour Analysis in the North Eastern Region of India and building up of networking at the national and international level.

Introduce employment oriented and professional short term courses for Master Degree holders in emerging areas like Human Rights, Peace and Conflict Resolution, Gender studies, Environmental Politics, Green Governance and Poverty Alleviation. Establishment of a full time Department of Public Administration.

Start extension programme on Human Rights and Duties with special emphasis on the rights of Women and Children. Objectives

The objectives of teaching and research in Political Science correspond partly to the general aims of liberal education, such as cultivation of maturity of mind, responsible citizenship, respect for all creation and human values in particular; in a nutshell, attainment of the Platonic ideal of virtue. But quite apart from the general objectives, Political Science education aims at teaching and training in professional requirements of the subjects so that the alumni might perform competent roles as teachers and researchers if they chose to be or else as administrators, legislator and professionals in politics in general, thus bringing theory closer to practice.


The history of the Department may be highlighted in terms of its leadership and thus seen broadly in three phases. The first phase began with the establishment of the Department in 1958 and lasted till 1973 (15 years) when Prof. V. Venkata Rao, the founder head who relinquished his office on superannuation. The second phase began when the mantle of headship passed on to Prof. D. P. Barooah and continued till his appointment as Vice-Chancellor of Gauhati University in 1986. With the appointment Prof.(Ms) Niru Hazarika as Head in 1986, the Headship of the Department has since become rotational every three years.

Thereafter, headship has been held on the basis of seniority by Prof. P. S. Reddi (1989-92), Prof. Niru Hazarika for second term(1992-95), Prof. Kunja Medhi (1995-98), Prof. Anuradha Dutta (1998-2001), Prof. Monirul Hussain (2001-2004) and Prof. Niru Hazarika from January 2004 for the third term. In 2006, Prof. Sandhya Goswami assumed the charge of the head of the Department. Prof. Monirul Hussain assumed charge as the Head of the Department in September 2009 upto 2012 March and Prof. Alaka Sarmah assume the charge of the head of the Department from 2012 and is continuing.

The foundation for academic pursuit in the discipline of Political Science was laid down in the first phase itself under the stewardship of Prof. V.V. Rao and it consolidated its position as a pioneer in the discipline during the second phase under the leadership of Prof. D.P. Barooah. During the third phase of the department, it continued to prosper with tremendous inputs from its own students joining as faculty members. Presently the Department has qualified faculties-specialized in different emerging areas of political science like administration and governance, gender studies, electoral politics and democracy, development, displacement and democracy, peace and conflict studies , human security,

Old Departmental Data

The department is engaged in research in following areas

  • Democracy and Electoral Politics
  • Gender Studies
  • Human Security
  • Peace and Conflict Studies
  • Nationality Question, Ethnicity & Migration
  • International Politics and Regional Studies
  • Public Governance
  • Grassroots politics and Panchayatiraj
  • Politics of globalization
  • Development, Displacement and Marginalization

Fellowship for Faculty

In early 1960, Dr. V. Venkata Rao was awarded Fulbright Fellowship for study in the USA. Dr. Monirul Hussain was awarded the Commonwealth Fellowship for study at the University of Oxford in 1999. Prof. Hussain was also a recipient of the South Asia Regional Fellowship from the Social Science Research Council (New York) in 2004. Dr. Noni Gopal Mahanta was awarded Peace Fellowship of Rotary Foundation for study at the University of California, US in 2004-05.

Postgraduate Course

Course Type: Course Name: Subject: Semesters Years Intake Capacity:
Postgraduate MA in Political Science Political Science 4 2 60

Students are required to take twenty courses over a four semester period.

Download Syllabus

Course Type: Course Name: Subject: Semesters Years Intake Capacity:
Postgraduate Ph.D in Political Science Political Science


Alaka Sarmah
MA (NEHU) PhD (NEHU) MPhil (NEHU) Political Theory, Gender and Politics
Akhil Ranjan Dutta
MA (Delhi) PhD (Gauhati) MPhil (Delhi) Political Economy
Jayanta Krishna Sarmah
MA (Gauhati) LLB (Gauhati) PhD (Gauhati) Postdoctoral Fellow (Texas, Austin) Public Policy & Administration, Development Studies, Panchayatiraj
Monirul Hussain
MA (AMU) PhD (JNU) MPhil (JNU) Political Sociology, Development Studies
Nanigopal Mahanta [ Head of the Department ]
MA (Berkley) MA (JNU) PhD (Gauhati) Peace and Conflict Studies
Sandhya Goswami
MA (JNU) PhD (Gauhati) MPhil (JNU) Democracy and Election Studies

Associate Professors

Shubhrajeet Konwer
MA (JNU) PhD (Gauhati) MPhil (JNU) International Relations

Assistant Professors

Barasa Deka
MA (JNU) MPhil (JNU) Political Theory
Dhruba Pratim Sharma
MA (JNU) PhD (JNU) MPhil (JNU) Political Sociology
Joanna Mahjebeen
MA (Delhi) PhD (Gauhati) Gender Studies
Vikas Tripathi
MA (JNU) MPhil (JNU) Indian Politics
Aleena Lanthasa (Public Policy)
Ankita Baruah (Ethnic Studies)
Anubhab Sarmah (Security Studies)
Atri Baruah (Public Policy)
Barnali Deka (Indian Foreign Policy)
Behzaad Karimi(International Relations)
Bidisha Borah (Gender and Law)
Breehivorna Talukdar (Ethnic Studies) UGC JRF
Chandini Pegu (Gender Studies)
Daisy Nath (Indian Politics)
Dibakar Das (Civil Society)
Diganta Kalita (Public Policy)
Geetimala Pathak (Public Policy)
Ionee Basumatary (Ethinic Studies)
Jintu Gohain (Media and Democracy)
Jnanashree Borah (Ethnic Studies)
Jutika Das (Political Economy)
Kakoli Das (Ethnicity)
Keshavananda Borah (Ethnic Studies)
Mallika Pegu (Gender Studies)
Md Mofidur Rahman (Human Security)
Md Nurul Hassan (Border Studies)
Mousumi Sharma (Public Policy)
Navajyoti Borah (Public Policy)
Nirmali Kakati (Women and police)
Nurul Alom Mullah (Ethnicity)
Nyatum Doke (Public Policy)
Parimita Bhuyan (Public Policy)
Pranjal Patiri (Ethic Studies)
Priyanka Sharma (Ethnic Studies)
Rahul Bania (Public Policy)
Sangita Mishra (Minority Studies)
Swabana Mumtaz (Ethic Studies) Maulana Azad National Fellow
Tabassum Rizvi (Gender studies) Maulana Azad National Fellow
Apurba Baruah (Northeast India Studies) ICSSR National Fellow


Department of Political Science
Gauhati University, Guwahati 781014, Assam
Email : polsc@gauhati.ac.in
Website : http://gauhati.ac.in/polsc.php


Seminar Hall

Department of Political Science owns a Seminar cum Conference Hall with round table microphone system, LCD Projector and a Big Screen Television.


The Department has its own Seminar library that has a rich collection of books and academic journals including the Economic and Political Weekly and Seminar. In the year 2003, ShriHirenNath, IPS and an ex-student of the Department, donated a package of books worth of Rs. 30,000 as well as book almirahs to the Department. From the UGC 10th plan allocation also, the Department bought a good number of titles.

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