IITs, IIMs to be set up in every state

IITs, IIMs to be set up in every state

IITs, IIMs to be set up in every state

The NDA government will set up Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) in every state.

It will also formulate a national education policy to meet challenges posed by lack of quality research and innovation in educational institutions, President Pranab Mukherjee said, while unveiling the agenda of the new government in his address to the joint session of Parliament here on Monday.

“India is the world’s oldest civilisation. Today, it is also a country with the largest population of youth. We must equip and nurture our youth with the right kind of education, skill-set and opportunity to reap this demographic dividend,” Mukherjee said.

The President said the government was committed to making “all minorities” equal partners in India’s progress. To achieve this, it will strengthen measures to impart “modern and technical” education among them. A National Madrassa Modernisation Programme will be rolled out for Muslim students.

“It is unfortunate that even after several decades of independence, sections of minority communities continue to suffer from poverty, as benefits of government schemes do not reach them. My government is committed to making all minorities equal partners in India’s progress,” Mukherjee said.

The President underlined that the government will strive for a transition from “youth development to youth-led development”, announcing that it will set up Massive Open Online Courses and virtual classrooms for students. A national e-library will be established to empower school teachers and students.

“With the motto of ‘har haath ko hunar’, my government will strive to break the barriers between formal education and skill development, and put in place a mechanism to provide academic equivalence to vocational qualifications,” he said, adding that the government will launch a National Multi-skill Mission with the goal of “skilled India”.

The President also announced that world-class research centres would be built in various fields of science, including nanotechnology, material sciences, thorium technology, brain research and stem cells, underlining that his government recognises the central role of science and technology in raising the quality of life.

The government will also establish institutes of technology for rural development and a central university of Himalayan studies. “The government will encourage and incentivise private sector investments, both domestic and foreign, in science and technology and in high-end research aimed at nurturing innovation,” he added.

Mukherjee also said a national mission on “e-Bhasha” will be launched to develop digital vernacular content and disseminate the country’s classic literature in different languages, noting that Indian languages are repositories of our rich literature, history, culture, art and other achievements. “My government will also provide the required resources for the maintenance and restoration of national heritage sites,” he pointed out. 

The President noted that India had a “vast untapped potential” for tourism, which could play a special role in our socio-economic progress, and announced that the government will initiate a mission mode project to create 50 tourist circuits to be built around “specific themes”.