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R&D institutions will play a major role in the upcoming decade

 Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi interacted with Directors of Centrally Funded Technical Institutions on 8th July 2021 via video conferencing. More than 100 Heads of Institutions joined the Prime Minister for this interaction. Union Minister for Education and Minister of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, MoS Smt. Annpurna Devi, MoS Dr. Rajkumar Ranjan Singh and MoS Dr. Subhas Sarkar and senior officials of the Ministry were also present during the interaction.

Prime Minister lauded the R&D work done by these institutions towards meeting the challenges posed by Covid. He appreciated the efforts of young innovators towards providing quick technological solutions.

Prime Minister said that there is a need to adapt higher education and technical education to keep in tune with the changing environment and emerging challenges. He added that this requires the institutions to reinvent and re-evaluate themselves, develop alternative and innovative models in accordance with the present and future needs of the country and society. He emphasized that our higher educational and technical institutions need to prepare our youth for continuous disruptions and changes, keeping in mind the fourth industrial revolution.

Prime Minister underlined the need to progress towards education models that are flexible, seamless, and able to provide learning opportunities as per the requirements of the learners. He said that access, affordability, equity, and quality should be the core values of such education models.

Prime Minister appreciated the improvement in the Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in higher education in the past few years & emphasized that digitization of higher education can play a big role in increasing GER, and students will have easier access to good quality and affordable education. Prime Minister also lauded the various initiatives taken by the institutions to increase digitization such as that of online bachelor and master degree programmes.

PM added that we need to develop an ecosystem of technological education in Indian languages and translate global journals into regional languages.

Prime minister said that ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’ will form the basis of dreams and aspirations of India in the coming 25 years when we celebrate 100 years of Independence. He added that technological, R&D institutions will play a major role in the upcoming decade, which is also being called as “India’s Techade”.

Prime Minister said that we need to focus on developing futuristic solutions in fields of education, healthcare, agriculture, defense, and cyber technologies.

Speaking on the occasion Shri Pradhan stated that India has got a New Education Policy after a period of 34 years. With the introduction of National Educational Policy-2020, the Indian education system has taken a giant leap in fostering an environment for a future-ready 21st century India, he added. He further said that the Government is committed to make students and youth the primary stakeholders in propelling India towards an equitable knowledge society.

Shri Pradhan emphasized that NEP will be instrumental in meeting the expectations of the Prime Minister from innovators, researchers and scientists. The Minister expressed his confidence that under the guidance of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and the support of our academic institutions, Government will continue to set new benchmarks in integrating education with employment & making it more inclusive, holistic, multi-disciplinary and at par with global standards.

During the interaction, Prof Govindan Rangarajan of IISc Bangalore, Prof Subhasis Chaudhuri of IIT Bombay, Prof. Bhaskar Ramamurthi of IIT Madras, and Prof Abhay Karandikar of IIT Kanpur, gave presentations to the Prime Minister and highlighted various ongoing projects, academic work, and new research being done in the country. The Prime Minister was apprised about the Covid related research being done that encompasses developing new techniques for testing, Covid vaccine development efforts, indigenous oxygen concentrators, Oxygen generators, Cancer Cell Therapy, Modular hospitals, Hotspot prediction, Ventilators production, Efforts in the fields of Robotics, Drones, Online education, Battery technology. The Prime Minister was also informed about new academic courses, especially the online courses that are being developed, as per the changing nature of the economy and technology.

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