Prime Minister's Office

English rendering of PM’s address at Grand Finale of Smart India Hackathon 2020

Posted On: 01 AUG 2020 7:08PM by PIB Delhi

You are working on best of the solutions. You are not only helping in providing solutions to challenges that the country is facing , but also strengthening India's aspirations regarding Data, Digitization and a Hi-tech Future.

Friends, we have always been proud that in the past centuries, we have given the best scientists, best technicians and technology enterprise leaders to the world. But this is the 21st century and in a fast changing world, India will have to change itself as fast as possible to play its same effective role.

With this thinking, the necessary eco-system for innovation, research, design, development and Enterprise is being rapidly developed in the country. Now there is a lot of emphasis on Quality of Education along with 21st century technology. Education system that meets the needs of the 21st century is equally important.

Be it the Prime Minister's e-learning programme or the Atal Innovation Mission, the expansion of scholarships in many areas to increase the scientific temperament in the country, or the modern facilities and financial support to sports talent, schemes to promote research or the mission of creating World Class 20 Institutes of Eminence in India, creation of new resources for online education or these campaigns like Smart India Hackathon, such efforts are being made to make India's education more modern, to ensure that its talent gets opportunities.

Friends,

A few days ago the New Education Policy of the country was announced in line with this. There has been a massive effort to formulate this policy keeping in view the thinking, needs, hopes and aspirations of the youth of the 21st century. For 5 years, there have been extensive debates and discussions on every point at every stage across the country. Only then this policy was framed.

In the true sense, the education policy of the new India reflects the dreams of India, the hopes and aspirations of the future generations of India. It contains the views of scholars from every region, every state. Therefore, it is not just a policy document but also a reflection of aspirations of more than 130 crore Indians.

Friends, you must have seen, even today many children feel that they are judged on the basis of a subject in which they have no interest. They are pressurised by parents, relatives, friends and the whole environment; and eventually they start reading the subjects chosen by others. This approach has given the country a very large population, which is well-educated, but most of what they have read is not of any use to them. Even after having plenty of degrees, he feels incomplete in himself. He feels lack of confidence within him that should have been there. This affects his entire life's journey.

Friends, an attempt has been made to change this approach through the New Education Policy. The earlier shortcomings are being removed. There has been now an attempt for systemic reform in India's education system; an attempt to transform both Intent and Content of education.

Friends,

The 21st century is the era of knowledge. This is the time to increase focus on: Learning, Research and Innovation. And, this is exactly what India's National Education Policy, 2020 does. This Policy wants to make your School, College and University experience: Fruitful, Broad-based; one that guides you to your natural passions.

Friends, you are among the best and brightest of India. This Hackathon is not the first problem you have tried to solve. Nor is this the last. I want you, and youngsters like you not to stop doing three things: Learning, Questioning and Solving.

When you learn, you get the wisdom to question. When you question, you get out-of-the-box methods to solve problems. When you do that, you grow. Due to your effort, our nation grows. Our planet prospers.

Friends, India's National Education Policy reflects these spirits. We are shifting from: The burden of the school bag, which does not last beyond school - to the boon of learning which helps for life; From simply memorizing to critical thinking. For years, the limitations of the system had an adverse effect on the lives of students. No longer! The National Education Policy reflects the aspirations of young India. It is not process centric; it is people centric and future centric.

Friends,

Among the most exciting things of the Policy is the emphasis on inter-disciplinary study. This concept has been gaining popularity; and rightly so. One size does not fit all. One subject does not define who you are. There are no limits to discovering something new. Human history has many examples of stalwarts who have excelled in diverse areas. Be it Aryabhata, Leonardo da Vinci, Helen Keller, Gurudev Tagore. Now, we have done away with some traditional boundaries between arts, science and commerce. If someone is interested, they can learn: Maths and Music together, or Coding and Chemistry together. This will ensure the focus is on what the student wants to learn rather than what the student is expected to, by society. Inter-disciplinary studies gives you control. In the process, it also makes you flexible.

In the National Education Policy, flexibility has been given great importance. There are provisions for multiple entry and exits. No one way street for a student. The Under-Graduate experience can either be a three or four year journey. Students will enjoy the advantages of an Academic Bank of Credit, which will store all the academic credits acquired. These can be transferred and counted in the final degree. Such flexibility was long needed in our education system. I am happy the National Education Policy has addressed this aspect.

Friends,

National Education Policy is big on access to education starting from primary education. In Higher Education, the aim is to increase Gross Enrolment Ratio to 50 per cent by 2035. Other efforts be it Gender Inclusion Fund, Special Education Zones, options for Open and Distance Learning will also help.
 

Friends, Baba Saheb Ambedkar, the great educationist of our country and the chief architect of the Constitution of India used to say that education should be such that it is accessible to all. This education policy is also dedicated to his ideals. This education policy emphasizes on creating job creators rather than job seekers. That is, in a way it is an attempt to bring reform in our mindset, in our approach. The focus of this policy is to create a self-reliant youth who will be able to decide whether to do a job, take up a service or become an entrepreneur.

Friends,

Language has always been a sensitive topic in our country. One of the major reasons for the same is that we have left the local languages to their own fate. They have very little chance to grow and thrive. Now with the changes brought in the education policy, the languages ​​of India will progress, and develop further. These will not only increase the knowledge about India, but will also strengthen the unity of India. There are many rich compositions in our Indian languages. We have centuries of knowledge and experience; all of them will expand further. This will also introduce the world to the rich languages ​​of India. And a huge benefit will be that the students will get to learn in their mother tongue in their formative years.

With this, there will be a lot of opportunity for them to grow and blossom their talent. They will be able to become comfortable and motivated to learn new things without pressure and will be able to connect with education. Anyway, if you look at the list of the top 20 countries of the world on the basis of GDP, you will see that most of the countries provide education in their mother tongue. These countries develop the thinking and understanding of the youth in their own language and also emphasize on other languages ​​to communicate with the world. The same policy and strategy is going to be very useful for 21st century India as well. India has an amazing treasure of languages, one life is not enough to learn them and today the world too is eager for it.

Friends,

The New Education Policy has another special feature. The focus is on integrating it with Global as much as the focus is on Local. While emphasis has been laid on giving a natural place to local folk arts and disciplines, classical art and knowledge, the Top Global Institutions are also invited to open campuses in India. With this, our youth will not only get Word Class Exposure and Opportunities in India but will also be more prepared for the Global Competition. This will also help in building world-class institutions in India, making India a hub of global education.

Friends, I have always trusted the youth power of the country. The youth of the country has proved again and again why I have faith in them. Recently, to fight corona, the demand for Face Shields had gone up. To meet this demand, the youth of the country came forward on a large scale with 3D printing technology. The manner in which young innovators, young entrepreneurs, have come forward to develop PPEs and other medical devices is discussed everywhere. Young developers have prepared a great medium for tracking Covid in a very short time with Aarogya Setu App.

Friends, all of you are the source of aspiration for the youth of self-reliant India. The role of all of youth is very important in achieving our goal of Ease of Living, to give a better life to the poor of the country. I have always believed that there is no such challenge facing the country that our youth cannot face; for which they cannot find a solution. Whenever in the time of need the country has looked up to its young innovators, they have not disappointed.

Through the Smart India Hackathon, the country has received amazing innovations in the past years. I am confident that even after this Hackathon, all the young friends will understand the needs of the country and continue to work on new solutions to make the country self-reliant.

Once again I wish you all the very best!

Thanks a lot!

*****

VRRK/KP

 



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