Thiruvananthapuram: Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan
Singh today said the Universities in the country should have to be
given maximum academic freedom and flexibility for converting them
into world class centres of learning.
Dr Singh said this while inaugurating the Scholarship Fund of the
Council of Higher education of the Kerala Government here.
"The Universities cannot become world-class centres of learning
unless we change the way in which we manage them. They should have
to be given maximum academic freedom and flexibility," he added.
Dr Singh said the Universities should recruit the best teachers,
including the many Indians in top Universities abroad for developing
the Universities as world class learning centres.
Stating that efforts were on to make India a premier centre of
education, he said one of the initiatives was to establish the
Nalanda University that would revive Indias ancient academic and
intellectual links with south East Asia and East Asia.
Dr Singh also hoped that the Central University that was being set
up in Kerala could be similarly developed as a University of renown
that served as an intellectual bridge with West Asian countries.
On the scholarship fund initiated by the Kerala government with
public contributions, he said that this was undoubtedly path
breaking in private-public partnership in education sector not only
in Kerala but also in other states.
Dr Singh also expressed his great concern over the decline of
interest among students in basic sciences. The Centre had tried to
reverse the trend through innovative schemes like INSPIRE, which
would provide scholarships of Rs 5,000 to one million students in
the age group of 10-15 years who showed talent for science.
In his welcome address, Kerala Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan
announced a contribution of Rs 12 crore to the scholarship fund
apart from the Rs three crore already given.
Kerala Governor R S Gavai, Union Minister of state for External
Affairs Shasi Tharoor, State Minister of Education M A Baby, State
Law Minister M Vijayakumar, were among others present on the