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PM's "Good Omen" Remark In 1st Trip To Key Ally's Bastion After Poll Result

Patna: Shortly after inaugurating Nalanda University's new campus in Bihar's Rajgir, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said his visit to Nalanda within 10 days of his third term as Prime Minister is a "good omen" in India's development journey.

"I got an opportunity to come to Nalanda within 10 days of taking oath for the third term. This is good luck. I also see this as a good omen in India's development journey," he said.

Developed at the site of the ancient university at Nalanda, the central university has two academic blocks with 40 classrooms and a seating capacity of around 1900. It has two auditoriums and students' hostel with a capacity of around 550.

The 455-acre campus also has an international centre, an amphitheatre, a faculty club, and a sports complex. The Nalanda University campus is a 'Net Zero' green campus. It runs on solar power, domestic and drinking water treatment plants, a water recycling plant and several water bodies. 

Nalanda, the Prime Minister said, is not just a name. "It is an identity, it is respect. It is a value, a mantra and pride. It is a declaration that fire can consume books, but flames cannot erase knowledge," he said.

The re-establishment of Nalanda University marks the golden age for India, the Prime Minister said, adding that the new campus will be a symbol of India's capability.

The Nalanda University has been set up by an Act of Parliament in 2010. The law names it an institution of national importance. The President of India is the Visitor to the university. Renowned economist and Nobel laureate Amartya Sen had served as the first Chancellor of the university. Currently, Arvind Panagariya, also a well-known economist, is the university's Chancellor.

The Prime Minister's visit to Rajgir comes shortly after he started his third consecutive term in the top post. He was accompanied by Bihar Chief Minister and JDU Nitish Kumar, whose critical support helped the BJP cross the majority mark in Parliament.

Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister also congratulated the people of Bihar. "This campus is an inspiration for Bihar, which is surging ahead on the path of development to reclaim its past glory."

Politically, the BJP is likely to showcase the development and inauguration of Nalanda University during Narendra Modi government's tenure as a key achievement. This is also significant because Bihar will vote in the Assembly polls next year. Nitish Kumar's JDU and BJP are allies in Bihar, but the equations have changed now that the BJP depends on JDU's support at the Centre.

In the recently held general election, the BJP and JDU won 12 seats in Bihar each and ally Lok Janshakti (Ram Vilas) bagged five. The INDIA Opposition bloc won nine Lok Sabha seats.

At the Nalanda inauguration, the Prime Minister thanked neighbouring countries for their support in the university's development. "Nalanda is not only the renaissance of India's heritage but also of the collective heritage of Asia and the world. The presence of representatives of so many nations for the inauguration of the university campus is unprecedented," he said, welcoming the foreign dignitaries.

Education, the Prime Minister, transcended borders and the binaries of profit and loss. "When education develops, economy and cultural roots are strengthened. If we look at developed countries, they became economic and cultural leaders after becoming leaders in education. Now, students and bright minds from across the world want to study in those countries. Once, this was the situation in our Nalanda and Vikramashila. It is not coincidence that when India was a leader in education, it was also on an economic high," he said.

Reiterating the goal to make India a developed country by 2047, he said, "India is revamping its education sector. My mission is to make India a global centre for education, to reclaim its identity as the world's most prominent knowledge centre."

Source: NDTV

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