Published: 10th November 2020
Dr K Kasturirangan on National Education Day: Lack of funding, mindset, capacity in India's state universities where 93% students study
Apart from the NRF, a national technology forum will also be set up, which will further nurture the idea of research and innovation among students, Education Minister Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal added
The new National Education Policy comes at a time when it is extremely important to bring in solutions to enable and catalyse quality research in this country, Dr K Kasturirangan said on Tuesday while speaking at a virtual conference conducted by the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay on the occasion of National Education Day (November 11). "A robust ecosystem of research is even more relevant today as solutions pertaining to Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, Machine Learning, are on the rise to deal with our healthcare, education, infrastructure, technological advancement goals. NEP 2020 focuses on research and innovation to create a vibrant, knowledgable 21st-century society. NEP brings in a comprehensive approach to develop a research mindset among the people of India. It will provide an end to end roadmap for the country's holistic development and nurture the creative potential of each individual," he added.
Dr Kasturirangan further went on to speak about the problems in the area of research our country is facing currently. "There's a lack of funding, lack of mindset and a clear lack of capacity in most of our state universities. And almost 93 per cent of students are studying in these institutions. A strong culture of research is required for overall development. Keeping this in mind, the NEP document has proposed the setting up of the National Research Foundation (NRF) to fund and aid research across colleges and universities including the private ones," he added. Providing a clear picture on what the NRF will do, Kasturirangan said: "It will support disciplinary and multi-disciplinary research, will build research capacity across institutes, disseminate the idea of research through seminars, award remarkable researchers and will also coordinate with other funding agencies to avoid overlaps."
Education Minister Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal, who was also present at the e-conference, congratulated IIT Bombay for organising the event, adding: "NEP 2020 was created after a lot of deliberation. Apart from the NRF, a national technology forum will also be set up, which will further nurture the idea of research and innovation among students. The new NEP is impactful, inclusive and stands on the pillars of equity, quality and access."
Further, IIT Bombay Director Subhasis Chaudhuri agreed and said that they were looking forward to the implementation of the document, which will then propel educational institutions in the country to the next level. "NEP 2020 is decentralised, autonomy will be provided at a much lower level and that is remarkable in terms of what we will achieve. We are eagerly looking forward to it," he concluded.