24 Sep : Condemning ragging in educational institutions as “suppression of new entrants”, President Pratibha Patil asked seniors to help junior students settle down.
The President, who arrived in Mizoram University to attend its sixth convocation, was greeted by cheering school children who had lined up along the road leading to the institution to get a glimpse of her.
“I have often spoken against ragging, which is nothing but suppression of new entrants in the campus,” Patil said on Friday in her speech on the occasion.
The President said she was glad to know that the university was free from the menace of ragging.
“It is encouraging that older students welcome the new students and help them settle down. This is also a tribute to the Mizo moral code of Tlawmngaihna which imposes an obligation on all member of society to be hospitable, kind, unselfish and helpful to others,” she said.
The President, during the convocation, awarded Gold Medals to 27 Post Graduate and Graduate students.
Patil also asked the boys of the University to work towards increasing their numbers in the medals tally.
“I see more girls than boys (being awarded medals)…although it is a good thing but boys should not lag behind.” Patil also emphasised on three qualities that should be imbibed by students. “One, it should be remembered that a successful life is largely a matter of discipline. But this discipline, in order to be of value, must be largely self-discipline. Second, the development of concentration helps in focusing the mind on the tasks before you. Third, time management helps you manage your tasks effectively by prioritising tasks and completing them as per schedule.”
She also asked the University to be prepared for challenges emerging from globalisation of economy.”Educational institutions to be relevant, must take into account the national scenario and global developments to structure a curriculum that caters to the opportunities and challenges that are likely to be faced by students,” she said.
The President said Indian economy “is getting integrated with the global economy through the process of globalisation.”
This throws the challenge of being globally competitive, she said, adding “Higher education must, therefore, develop analytical, relative and scientific capability of their students”.
Universities are institutions for public good and public welfare and have a role in fulfilling national and social responsibilities.
“Education without community participation is incomplete in today’s world. I am happy to know that research based on requirement is being conducted here. Students must interact with local communities and understand their problems,” she said in Aizawl on Friday.
Moreover, Patil exhorted that students take up research in bamboo flowering called ‘Muatam’ and ‘Jhum’ cultivation, which have caused setbacks to agriculture in the state.
It is also important that the University creates certain awareness of the adverse impact of climate change and encourages people to adopt energy efficient and eco-friendly measures, Patil, who is also a Visitor to the Mizoram University, said.
Governor and Chancellor of the University Lt Gen (retired) M M Lakhera said the state needs a boost in medical education.
“About 37 seats are sprinkled across the secondary level medical colleges across the country for Mizo students. I hope that a medical college will start soon in the university”. Lakhera warned students not to get swayed away by anti-India propaganda.
Nation’s prosperity depends on citizen’s quality: Patil
President Pratibha Patil said that welfare and prosperity of a nation depends on the quality of its citizen, which is determined by the education each one receives.
Addressing the convocation of the Mizoram University at the varsity’s campus in Tanhril near Aizawl on Friday, Patil said education is fundamental for development giving emphasis on creative and scientific education for all-round development.
“Calibre of a university depends on the works of its lecturers and professors,” she said, adding that the faculty is like its life.
Patil, who is also the Visitor of the University, asked the students to have close interaction with the local community to understand their problems and find a solution.
The phenomenon of ‘Mautam’ or famine caused by gregarious bamboo flowering which occurred in the state in a cycle of every 48 years and the extent of destruction caused by ‘jhum’ or shifting cultivation, where land is first cleared by burning or felling trees, must be taken up for scientific research and study, she said.
The President lauded the hospitality of the Mizos saying, “The hospitality of Mizoram is world renowned.”
The convocation was also attended by state Governor Lieutenant General M M Lakhera, Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla and his council of Ministers, legislators and top officials.