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Rashtrapati Bhavan : 01.06.2013


The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee attended the valedictory function of Golden Jubilee Celebrations of Dayanand Education Society today (June 1, 2013) at Latur.

Speaking on the occasion, the President said that for about eighteen hundred years in history, Indian universities had dominated the world education system. Takshashila was a global university established in the 6th Century BC. It became the point of assembly for four civilizations – Indian, Persian, Greek and Chinese. There were other famed universities like Nalanda, Vikramashila, Valabhi, Somapura and Odantapuri that added to the outstanding Indian higher education system. These universities functioned efficiently as a system before the decline set in. However, he said that today there in no Indian university amongst the top two hundred universities in the world. This situation must be improved. He added that to achieve the objective of a knowledge based society and for expansion of education, we have to emphasize on accessibility and affordability.

The President said that we have expanded the higher education sector significantly. The total number of students enrolled in this sector was 2.6 crore at the end of the Eleventh Plan period. This number is projected to increase to 3.6 crore at the end of the Twelfth Plan period. He stated that we have over six hundred fifty degree awarding institutions and over thirty three thousand colleges. But we are short of good quality academic institutions, on account of which, many bright students prefer going abroad for higher studies.

The President also said that much more need to done in the area of innovation and research. He said that recently, he had opened Innovation Clubs in two Central Universities in Uttar Pradesh and Assam and attended innovation exhibitions organized in these universities and in the Nagaland University. He called upon Dayanand Education Society to take the initiative to build a strong innovation culture and urged the gathering to take leadership in encouraging innovation at the grassroots level.

The President said that occasions such as Golden Jubilee of an institution provide us an opportunity to reflect and look back from where we started and also it helps to make a commitment to move further ahead. He said that thanks to the initiative taken by Dayanand Education Society, Latur has emerged as an important hub of education catering not only to the people of this area but to large parts of the country.

Among the dignitaries present on the occasion were Governor of Maharashtra, Shri K. Sankaranarayanan, Governor of Punjab, Shri Shivraj V Patil and Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Shri Prithviraj Chavan.

This release issued at 1420 hrs