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Babasaheb Ambedkar laid strong foundation to strengthen India’s democratic heritage: Modi
New Delhi, April 13, 2021
Babasaheb Ambedkar had laid a strong foundation to strengthen India’s democratic heritage, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Wednesday.
Addressing the Association of Indian Universities’ 95th Annual Meet and National Seminar of Vice-Chancellors through video conferencing, the Prime Minister said during the freedom struggle, millions and millions of freedom fighters dreamt of a harmonious and inclusive India. Babasaheb made a beginning in realizing those dreams in the form of drafting the Constitution. Today India is creating a new future and achieving new dimensions of success by following the same Constitution, he said.
Modi launched four books related to Ambedkar, authored by journalist Kishor Makwana. The event held on Babasaheb’s birth anniversary was hosted by Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University, Ahmedabad.
“There is a clear vision of Babasaheb's philosophy in Makwana Ji's books. While one of his books introduces Babasaheb’s 'Jeevan Darshan' (philosophy of life), the other focuses on 'Vyakti Darshan' (individual philosophy). Similarly, the third book highlights Babasaheb's 'Rashtra Darshan' (national philosophy), the fourth book 'Aayam Darshan' introduces his philosophical dimension to the countrymen. These four philosophies are no less than modern scriptures in themselves.
“I would like our new generation in colleges and universities to read more and more of such books. All these dimensions, whether it is the inclusive society, the concern for the rights of the Dalit-deprived society, the question of upliftment and contribution of women, or Babasaheb's vision on education and especially on higher education, will offer an opportunity to the youth of the country to understand Babasaheb,” Modi added.
“We are all familiar with Babasaheb's struggles of life. The position that Babasaheb reached after so many struggles is a great inspiration for all of us. Our education system and universities have this responsibility to carry the country forward on the path shown by him. When it is the issue of common goals and shared efforts as a nation, collective efforts become the means of accomplishment,” he said.
“Therefore, I think the role of Association of Indian Universities becomes very important. AIU also has the legacy of scholars like Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, Hansa Mehta and Dr Zakir Hussain.
"Dr Radhakrishnan Ji would say: 'The end-product of education should be a free creative man, who can battle against historical circumstances and adversities of nature.'
“It implies that education should be such which should liberate the person so that he can think openly, and make something new with new thinking. He believed that we should develop our education management as a unit of the entire world. But at the same time, he emphasized the Indian character of education. This becomes even more important in the global scenario today," the Prime Minister said.
Modi noted that the theme of the AIU seminar was "Implementing National Educational Policy-2020 to Transforming Higher Education in India".
Talking about the growing demand for skills in the emerging Aatmnirbhar Bharat (Self-reliant India), he said India was being looked upon as the future centre of Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, Big data, 3D printing, Virtual Reality and robotics, mobile technology, geo-informatics, smart healthcare and defence sector.
“To meet the requirement of skills, Indian Institutes of skills are being set up in three metropolises. In Mumbai, the first batch of the Indian Institute of Skills has already started. In 2018, the Future Skills Initiative was launched with NASSCOM. We want all universities to be multi-disciplinary as we want to give students flexibility,” he added.
Gujarat Governor Acharya Dev Vrat, Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, Gujarat Education Minister Bhupendra Singh, UGC Chairman Prof DP Singh, Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Vice-Chancellor Prof. Ami Upadhyay and Association of Indian Universities President Prof Tej Pratap were among those at the meeting.