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PM thanks nations for endorsing Nalanda varsity project

Source: PTI
October 25, 2009 18:28 IST

Describing it as a matter of "deep satisfaction", Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday thanked East Asian countries for endorsing Nalanda University project and said it will be a global institution of "excellence in education".

"The East Asian Summit leaders' endorsement of the Nalanda University project, which is to be located in Bihar, is a matter of deep satisfaction," Singh said in his opening remarks at a press conference in Thailand after attending the fourth East Asian Summit and the seventh Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit in Cha-Am Hua Hin, Thailand.

"We intend to move forward with the next steps to establish the Nalanda University as a centre of excellence in education and international understanding," he said.

Singh had earlier said that this has been the product of many months of hard work put in by the Nalanda Mentor Group, and will be a "shining example of cooperative action in the field of education".

Earlier, addressing the seventh India-ASEAN Summit, Singh on Saturday said, "We look forward to working closely with the ASEAN and other countries of the East Asia Summit process to establish the Nalanda University"

Nalanda university, which existed until 1197 AD in Bihar and has been called one of the first great universities in recorded history, attracted students and scholars from Korea, Japan, China, Tibet, Indonesia, Iran and Turkey, besides being a pedestal of higher education in India.

An 11-member Nalanda Mentor Group, headed by Nobel laureate Amartya Sen, had been set up to oversee the opening of Nalanda International University at Nalanda in Bihar.

The proposed Nalanda International University will be fully residential, based on the ideal of ancient varsity once situated there.

In the first phase, seven schools with 46 foreign faculty members and over 400 Indian academics will be established. A renowned international scholar will be its chancellor.

The faculties include information science and technology, peace and Buddhism, international relationship, history, language & literature, development & management and ecology and environment.
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