Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu has suggested restoring India’s glorious tradition in the education sector by revisiting ancient teaching-learning systems and traditional knowledge to make them relevant to the present times.
Addressing a gathering after inaugurating the South Asia Institute of Peace and Reconciliation (SAIPR) in Haridwar, the Vice-President lamented that India’s famed, age-old education system was severely dented by centuries of foreign rule.
He said that prolonged colonial rule deprived large sections, including women, of education and only a small elite class had access to formal education. “It is necessary to provide quality education to all, only then can our education be inclusive and democratic,” he said.
Naidu expressed happiness over National Education Policy’s attempt to Indianise our education system and expressed strong disapproval of the mentality that considers everything Indian as inferior.
Emphasizing the need to reconnect with our roots, the Vice-President wanted the family elders to spend more time with the young children so that the latter can better imbibe our rich cultural values and traditions. He advised youngsters to spend time with nature and called it the best teacher.
Stressing the importance of mother tongue in our lives, the VicePresident exhorted the youth to practice, propagate and promote their mother tongue. “I would like to see a day when Indians talk to their fellow countrymen in their mother tongue, the administration is run in mother tongue and all Government orders are issued in people’s language,” Naidu said and called for use of local language in court proceedings.
With social and other tensions on the rise in the strife-torn world, the Vice-President said that peace is a prerequisite for humanity’s progress. “Peace has a cascading effect—it engenders social harmony and paves the path for progress and prosperity,” he said, underlining that the ‘dividend of peace’ benefits every stakeholder and brings wealth and happiness to the society.
Referring to our age-old civilizational values of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ and ‘Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu’, Naidu said that India’s commitment to peace and welfare of humanity transcends geographical boundaries. “India is known as a land of peace. We have always accorded highest priority to maintaining peace and ensuring harmonious living of all sections of the society,” he said.
Noting that South Asian countries share common history and civilization, he also called for respecting the linguistic, ethnic, and cultural diversities in the region, which showcase the core values of tolerance and peaceful coexistence. “As the ‘spiritual capital’ of the world, India will continue to play its part in maintaining peace and ensuring harmony,” he said.
Congratulating everyone involved in the establishment of the South Asia Institute of Peace and Reconciliation (SAIPR), the Vice-President hoped that the institute will become an important center for academic deliberations and act as a springboard to spread the values of peace and reconciliation.
It may be noted that SAIPR has been established at the Dev Sanskriti Vishwavidyalaya in Haridwar in the Golden Jubilee year of Gayatri Teerth. On this occasion, the VicePresident remembered Lord Buddha and Emperor Ashoka and said that they preferred Dhamma Ghosh over ‘Yudh Ghosh’ (war), and Panchsheel, as propounded by Lord Buddha, forms the basis of our foreign policy.
Naidu also lauded the efforts being made by Dev Sanskrit Vishwavidyalaya in collaboration with various institutions to make Yoga and meditation popular across the world. He called Yoga India’s unique gift to humanity.
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