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Varsities to have Rajiv Gandhi Chairs
October 23, 2005 19:42 IST
Plans are afoot to set up soon Chairs named after former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in ten universities across the country to pursue research on issues like panchayati raj, women's empowerment and nuclear disarmament, subjects close to the heart of the late leader.
"We are keen that they are available from 2005/06 academic session," University Grants Commission Chairman V N Rajashekharan Pillai said.
Funded entirely by the Centre, the Chairs would be fully autonomous institutions, he said, adding the UGC will be the nodal agency to support the scheme.
The Chairs would be set up in the Universities of Punjab, Delhi, Mumbai, Calcutta, Madras, Allahabad, North Eastern Hill University, Shillong, Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agriculture Sciences and Technology, Srinagar, Cochin University of Science and Technology and Barkatullah University in Bhopal.
There would be a national coordination committee to advise on the activities of the Chair and make it unique in approach and functioning, Pillai said, adding it was aimed at providing capacity building activities for teachers, researchers and students in colleges and universities on key issues.
Pillai said the plans are to turn the Chairs into Centres for study and research on themes on which Rajiv Gandhi made an indelible impact.
The objectives of the Chairs will be to identity national level discussions and dialogues on broader themes which would include topics like Impact of Technology on Society and Livelihood and Food Security.
Pillai said that UGC would support the initiative for five years and distinguished persons of eminence would be appointed and supported by research fellows.
He said that a meeting of Vice Chancellors of the ten universities is being convened here on October 25 to finalise the initiative.