Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu has called for revamping the entire education system from pedagogy to research to make India a leading centre of knowledge and innovation.
Delivering the 3rd Annual Convocation of the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, Vice President Naidu pointed out that India was once known as Vishwaguru and said that the time has come for India to once again emerge as a global hub of learning.
Urging the universities and institutions of higher learning to completely reorient their methods of teaching, he wanted JNU and other universities in India to figure among the top-ranking global institutions.
The Vice President observed that the Indian civilization always laid emphasis on a holistic integrated vision of education. Urging universities like JNU to build on our strengths and raise the bar, he said all-round excellence and the ability to lead the global agendas must be our aim.
Urging the institutions of higher learning to learn from the best institutions in the world and adapt the best practices, he said: “We have, as a civilization, been one of the most receptive societies that have welcomed good ideas from across the world”.
Pointing out that India was on a unique growth trajectory, he said the students have “limitless opportunities” to contribute towards this endeavour.
Referring to the vast untapped demographic dividend, Vice President Naidu said the youth of the country, constituting two-thirds of our population, must have access to high-quality skill development and higher education facilities.
Reminding the students that they were inheritors of great culture and a pluralistic, holistic world view, he advised them to develop an understanding of the finer aspects of this inheritance and preserve and propagate them. “You must continuously strive to use your knowledge and wisdom to improve the quality of life of people around you”, Vice President Naidu added.
Asserting that education has a transformation potential, the Vice President said that it transforms the learner and gives the power to harness knowledge for common good. “I would like to advise our outgoing graduands to follow India’s core philosophy of sharing and caring”, he added.
Emphasizing the importance of empowering women through education, the Vice President said that no nation could make progress if women lagged behind. He also favoured the political empowerment of women by providing reservations in the Parliament and State legislatures.
Vice President Naidu lauded JNU for its special admission policy for women and students from marginalized sections.
The Vice President also emphasized the need to provide education up till 10th standard in child’s mother tongue. “We should give extra incentive to children who undergo their initial schooling in their mother tongues”, he said.
HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhariyal ‘Nishank’, Chancellor, JNU and Member Niti Ayog, Vijay Kumar Saraswat and Vice-Chancellor of JNU, Prof. Jagdeesh Kumar were among the dignitaries present at the Convocation.