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Rashtrapati Bhavan : 10.08.2016

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee addressed students and faculty of Higher Educational and Research Institutions and Officer Trainees at Civil Service Academies from Rashtrapati Bhavan today (August 10, 2016) using the National Knowledge Network. The topic of the address was ‘Innovation: A Way of Life’.

Addressing the students, faculty and officer trainees, the President proposed nine sutras to invigorate India’s march towards a more inclusive, diverse, sustainable and innovative society which include –(i) we should not snub children when they ask questions to which we have no answer; (ii) we should promote and reinforce a scientific temper by questioning our beliefs which are not compatible with scientific way of thinking; (iii) innovation clubs and tinkering labs should be set up in schools, colleges and research institutions; (iv) we should build viable and sustainable bridges between formal and informal knowledge systems; (v) we must give due recognition to cultural, technological and traditional skills while implementing our employment guarantee schemes and skill development programmes; (vi) we should bring our educational system in line with contemporary societal expectations; (vii) we need to overcome the deeply-embedded inertia in our psyche and constantly ask ourselves: how can I solve this problem? Can I still try, no matter if I fail a few times?; (viii) we must develop a sense of immediacy as time and tide waits for none; (ix) we must not tolerate inefficiency, shabbiness and poor quality work.

The President said India is the world’s largest youth-populated nation. Over 600 million people in India out of a total population of 1.28 billion are below the age of 25 years. We have an abundance of creative, restless and inquisitive minds. In the networked environment of today, we need the power of youth to realize the full potential of an aspirational India. For this, creative thinking and a desire for innovation must become a part of our day-to-day lives.

The President said India may have lagged behind in some high tech innovations but when it comes to developing solutions to everyday problems, we have made a difference. He stated that Rashtrapati Bhavan has been hosting innovation scholars as guests for the last three years under its ‘In-Residence’ programme where innovative minds come together to "recharge their creative batteries”. He called upon educationists, corporate leaders and community leaders to think of extending such recognition to creative and innovative people of our country.

This release issued at 1335 hrs.