Union Minister Smriti Irani announced that a national-level competition to promote research and innovation among students will start from August 15 and students will contribute their ideas directly to the central government. She was replying to a question by a student of the Savitribai Phule Pune University at an event on Friday.
Irani, who was in New Delhi, was addressing dignitaries, professors and students through a web-conferencing facility during the nationwide digital launch of 10 infrastructure projects under the Ministry of Human Resource and Development’s Rastriya Uchchatar Scheme (RUSA), which includes SPPU’s project of Digital Classroom and E-content learning modules.
The event was organised at SPPU’s department of management sciences (PUMBA) where state project director of RUSA, Manisha Verma, SPPU vice-chancellor Wasudeo Gade, vice-chancellors of seven state universities and other dignitaries were present.
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After the formal launch, Irani, who addressed the audience in Marathi, congratulated the team from the ‘Oxford of the East’ for their achievement.
Replying to a question from student Shweta Joglekar about how students can contribute to government plans of Make in India and Smart Cities, Irani replied that the research proposals of students will be welcomed through the new scheme. She invited students to suggest a name, logo and slogan of the competition.
Irani was asked by Shantanu Joshi, another student, about schemes initiated by her ministry to promote research among students, and she asked him to prepare a proposal and come to New Delhi.
On being asked by a student from Gadchiroli about the steps taken to prevent student suicides, she said that all universities had been asked to set up counselling and guidance centres. She added that parents share equal responsibility and must stop exerting pressure on students. Meanwhile, the event also saw the digital launch of projects from Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jammu and Kashmir, Odisha, Punjab, Mizoram, Sikkim, Jharkhand and Telangana.