President Ram Nath Kovind on Sunday while welcoming implementation of the National Education policy (NEP) in Jammu and Kashmir hoped that determined efforts will be made to make this paradise a hub of knowledge, innovation and learning.

President Kovind was addressing a conference in Srinagar through a video message on implementation of the NEP in J&K. The conference was attended by Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha, Vice-Chancellors of universities, principals of colleges in the UT as well as other stakeholders.

He said education is the biggest catalyst for change and the youth is the most potent agent of social transformation. He said that the NEP will prove to be a milestone in realizing India’s unprecedented demographic dividend.

HE said his “dream is to see Jammu and Kashmir emerge as a centre of knowledge, enterprise, innovation and skill development”.

Appreciating the scholarly pursuits of the region, the President said that determined efforts should be made to make this paradise a hub of knowledge, innovation and learning by implementing NEP in letter and spirit.

Taking inspiration from the captivating couplet, he said that these steps would make Jammu and Kashmir once again a “Firdaus on the earth, a bright jewel on the crown of Mother India” as it was referred to in the medieval age.
Talking about the rich heritage in the field of education inherited by Jammu and Kashmir, President Kovind said that “it has been a centre of literature and learning since time immemorial. Citing the examples of Kalhana’s Rajtarangini and Mahayana Buddhism, the tenets of which were popular in Kashmir, he opined that history of India’s cultural traditions would remain incomplete without taking them into consideration”.

He said “I have been meeting and interacting with school children from the region at Rashtrapati Bhavan every year. In my own experience, I can say it with conviction that Jammu and Kashmir is a reservoir of extremely intelligent, talented and innovative children”.

Reiterating the importance of NEP, the President said that India has an unprecedented demographic dividend but it could be positively realized only if the young people constituting a substantial segment of the population become skilled, professionally competent, and above all educated in the real sense. Showing faith in the children of Jammu and Kashmir, he said that Jammu and Kashmir is a reservoir of extremely intelligent, talented and innovative children. He further added that the implementation of the education policy will produce students with “ignited minds”.

Emphasizing on value-based education, President Kovind said that “it is important to understand our tradition and rich cultural heritage which can be achieved only in our mother tongue. It is this mother tongue that is being encouraged in the new education policy as it adheres to the cultural ethos of our country. He further observed that the three-language formula which is envisioned in this policy is of immense significance and could promote multilingualism as well as national unity but at the same time no language will be imposed on any state or union territory”.

He said; “Jammu and Kashmir since time immemorial has been a centre of literature and learning, science and spirituality. Jammu and Kashmir is a land of rich and diverse cultural traditions. From Hinduism to Buddhism to Sufi Islam, all faiths have found home in the cultural ethos of this land. This peaceful and shared coexistence manifests in the lives of its people”.