Stressing the need to fix the country’s current education system, eminent scientist and Bharat Ratna recipient CNR Rao Tuesday said steps should be taken to ensure proper infrastructure in rural schools. Rao, who was conferred honorary Doctor of Science (DSc) degree by Presidency University at a convocation ceremony here, called for urgent measures to address the woes of students, who do not have resources to pursue higher education despite scoring well in exams.
“Millions of students do not know what career to pursue in the absence of adequate number of teachers and proper infrastructure in schools. It is necessary to fix our education system,” he stated. Rao, who has worked in many advisory capacities in the government, sought changes in the examination system.
“This nonsensical examination system takes us nowhere. It only adds to the agony of young minds. That needs to be changed,” he maintained. The scientist also pitched for strengthening the foundation of our country with scientific education. “India can become a world leader through scientific researches. In fact, the country should take the lead in scientific studies with mission-oriented programmes,” he said.
Talking about the role of teachers in shaping young minds, he said they should not just “transmit knowledge but disseminate truth”.
About his honour, the eminent scientist said it was the 79th doctorate bestowed on him by a hallowed institution. Referring to Bengal as a “renaissance state”, which produced world-renowned scientists like J C Bose and Meghnad Saha, Rao said, “I am really honoured by this doctorate since it came from an esteemed university like Presidency. Veteran actor Soumitra Chatterjee, who received D Litt at Tuesday’s convocation ceremony, said he felt privileged to have received a degree from the premiere university.
“I have received honorary degrees from eight universities so far, but my feelings today can only be likened with what I had experienced after getting Desikottam from Visva Bharati,” he said. Desikottam is the highest honour conferred by Visva Bharati on distinguished individuals. The convocation ceremony of the Presidency University was shifted from the university campus to Nandan complex the cultural hub of the city this year in the wake of an agitation by a section of students over hostel accommodation.
Vice Chancellor Anuradha Lohia said a total of 750 students, who were supposed to collect their degrees at the ceremony, will now receive the certificates from respective head of departments on the campus.