New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the 18th Convocation of Tezpur University, Assam today through video conferencing. Governor of Assam Prof. Jagdish Mukhi, Union Education Minister Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ and the Chief Minister of Assam Shri Sarbananda Sonowal were also present on the occasion.
Speaking on the occasion, the Prime Minister said today is a moment to remember and cherish for a lifetime for over 1200 students. He believed that what the students learnt at Tezpur University will accelerate the progress of Assam and progress of the country. He said the sentiment contained in the university anthem which was written by Bharat Ratna Bhupen Hazarika resonates with the great history of Tezpur. The Prime Minister quoted a few lines from the University Anthem
“अग्निगड़र स्थापत्य, कलियाभोमोरार सेतु निर्माण,
सेहि स्थानते बिराजिसे तेजपुर विश्वविद्यालय”
That is, Tezpur University is situated in a place where there is an architecture like Agnigad, where there is a Kalia-Bhomora bridge, where there is a light of knowledge. He said eminent personalities like Bhupen Da, Jyoti Prasad Agarwala and Bishnu Prasad Rabha are identified with Tezpur.
Addressing the students, the Prime Minister said from now until the completion of 100 years of India’s independence, are also the golden years of your life. He urged them to spread the glory of Tezpur across India and all over the world, take Assam and North East to new heights of development. He asked the students to take full advantage of the possibilities created by the Government’s efforts at development of the North East especially in sectors like connectivity, education and health.
The Prime Minister remarked that Tezpur University is also known for its Innovation Center. These Grassroots innovations are giving momentum to Vocal for Local and are being used to solve local problems, opening new doors of development. He lauded the innovations of Tezpur University like low-cost technology to provide clean drinking water, pledge taken to convert Waste into Energy in every village, inexpensive and effective technology related to biogas and organic fertilizers, campaign to preserve the Biodiversity and Rich Heritage of North East, documentation the languages of the North East tribal society which are in danger of extinction, preservation of centuries-old wood-carved art at Batadrav Thana, Nagaon, digitization of Assam’s books and papers written during colonial times.
The Prime Minister cited Tezpur University Campus itself as the reason for motivation to do work on so many local needs. Here the hostels are named after mountains and rivers in this region. He said these are not just names, but also inspiration for life. He said in the journey of life, we have to face many difficulties, many mountains and many rivers have to be crossed. He said to the students that with every mountaineering your expertise grows and your perspective is ready for new challenges. He said like several tributaries merge into one river and mix into the sea, we should also take knowledge from different people in life, learn and achieve our goal and move forward with that learning. He said when one proceeds with this approach, North East will be able to contribute to the development of the country.
The Prime Minister elaborated on the concept of Aatmnirbhar Abhiyan. He explained while this movement is about change in resources, physical infrastructure, technology and economic and strategic might, the biggest transformation is in the realm of instinct, action and reaction which is in sync with the mood of today’s youth.
The Prime Minister said today’s young India has a distinctive way of taking on challenges. He used the recent performance of the young Indian cricket team in Australia to illustrate his point. The Indian cricket team faced so many challenges. They suffered crushing defeat yet recovered equally fast and won the next match. The Players showed determination despite injuries. They took the challenge head on and looked for fresh solutions instead of getting frustrated by difficult conditions. There were inexperienced players but their morale was high and they grabbed the opportunity given to them. They overpowered a better team with their talent and temperament.
The Prime Minister stressed that this stellar performance of our players is important not just from the point of view of the sports field. Shri Modi listed important life lessons from the performance. First, we should have faith and confidence in our ability; second, a positive mindset begets positive results. Third and most important lesson, said the Prime Minister, is – if one is facing two options, one safe and the other is an option of a difficult victory, one must surely explore the option of victory. There is no harm in occasional failure and one should not refrain from taking the risks. We need to be proactive and fearless. If we overcome the fear of failure and unnecessary pressure, we will emerge fearless. This new India, confident and dedicated to goals, is evident not only in the cricket field, all of you are part of this picture, the Prime Minister told the Students.
This self-confidence and absence of fear in trading the uncharted path and young energy has strengthened the country in its fight against Corona. India overcame the initial apprehensions and showed that with resolve and resilience, resources are not far behind. India took fast, proactive decisions instead of compromising with the situation and effectively fought with the virus. Made in India solutions contained the spread and improved the health infrastructure. Our vaccine related research and production capability is giving India and many other countries of the world confidence of a security shield, said the Prime Minister.
The Prime Minister also listed digital infrastructure enabling direct benefit transfer, fintech digital inclusion, world’s largest banking inclusion, world’s largest toilet construction movement, largest movement of providing tap water in every household, world’s largest health insurance scheme and world’s largest vaccination drive as testimony to today’s India’s attitude, unafraid of experimentation for solution and not averse to undertake large-scale projects. These projects are benefitting Assam and the Northeast.
The Prime Minister talked of new technologies that are creating new possibilities. Talking about the possibility of future universities which might be fully virtual providing students and faculty to be part of any university of the world, the Prime Minister emphasized the need for a regulatory framework for such transformation. He pointed out that the new National Education Policy is a step in this direction. This policy encourages maximum use of technology, multi-disciplinary education and flexibility. NEP puts stress on preparing our education system for data and data-analytics. Data analysis will massively improve the processes from admissions to teaching and evaluation.
The Prime Minister called upon the students of Tezpur University to help in fulfilling these goals. He said that, after finishing their formal education, they not only work for their future but for the future of the country. He advised them to keep their ideals high which will protect them from the vicissitudes of life. He said the next 25-26 years are important for them as well as their country and expressed the hope that the students will take the country to new heights.