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Visva-Bharati aimed to free Indian education from subordination, says Modi

Visva-Bharti University was set up to free India’s education from subordination, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday and asked the varsity to research Indian heritage and promote India’s image globally.

Modi called upon students of the university to prepare a vision document for the next 25 years and urged them to find ways to make nearby villages self-reliant and help take their products across the globe.

“Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore developed systems in Visva-Bharti that were the medium of modernising Indian education and freeing it from the shackles of slavery,” he said while virtually addressing the convocation of the varsity.

“Similarly, the new National Education Policy also breaks old restrictions and allows students to realize their full potential. It allows flexibility in selection of subjects and medium of instruction. The policy promotes entrepreneurship and self-employment, research and innovation,” the prime minister said.

Gurudev named the university Visva-Bharati, to denote a global university, as he expected that anyone who comes to learn here will see the whole world from the point of view of India and Indianness, Modi said. So he made Visva-Bharati such a place to learn, which can be seen in the rich heritage of India, he said.

“Visva-Bharati for Gurudev Tagore was not just a knowledge imparting institution but an attempt to reach the topmost goal of Indian culture, which is to achieve oneself,” the prime minister said. Modi recalled the historical strength of the traditional Indian education system and spoke about the vibrant teacher-student relation at traditional village schools or gurukuls.

Students should spread awareness about India and said Visva-Bharati should lead all educational institutions to carry India’s message forward and enhance the country’s image globally. Modi said.

The prime minister termed West Bengal an inspiration for ‘Ek Bharat-Shreshth Bharat’ and said Visva-Bharati will play a big role in the 21st century knowledge economy, taking Indian knowledge and identity to every corner of the world.

“Knowledge, thought and skill are not static but a dynamic and continuous process” and “just as one has to be restrained and sensitive while in power, every scholar also has to be responsible towards those who do not have knowledge”, he said.

Modi said both positive and negative paths are always there and urged the students to “decide whether they want to be part of the problem or the solution”. “If they put the nation first, then their every decision will move towards some solution,” he said.

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