IMPHAL, April 29: The President of India, Pranab Mukherjee, today made an appeal to the youth of Manipur “let the dark days of violence and conflict be left behind and let a new dawn emerge.”
The President of India stated this while attending the 14th convocation of the Manipur University, as the chief guest.
The President also conferred honorary degrees as part of the convocation to social activist, Rishang Keishing (Doctor of Law) and Musicologist Laishram Birendra Kumar Singh (Doctor of Literature) and also conferred Degrees to the candidates of School of Humanities, School of Social Sciences, School of Life Sciences, School of Human and Environment Sciences, Schools of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, School of Medical Sciences etc.
The convocation was attended by Manipur’s Governor, VK Duggal, as guest of honour and Chancellor of Manipur University, Prof Dilip M Nachane as the function president.
Moreover, the chief minister of Manipur Okram Ibobi, deputy chief minister Gaikhangam, council of ministers, civil and police top ranking officials etc also attended the convocation.
Noting that Manipur is a beautiful state that has excelled rationally and internationally in the fields of art, culture and sports, the President held that India is proud of the achievements made by the people of Manipur and looks forward to them bringing more glory for the country in the future.
However, he maintained that it is important that all people, especially, the youth of this state recognize that economy and society can flourish only in an atmosphere free from violence. No problem is ever resolved by violence, the President added.
“Violence only aggravates the pain and the hurt on every side. I call upon the youths of Manipur to join hands with the youths of the rest of the country in forging the future of our Nation. India is today a nation on the move. In every field of activity-be it business, industry, trade, education or culture, our billion plus people are marching vigorously forward led by the ideas, enterprise and energy of our predominantly young population”.
Claiming that the emerging India offers enormous opportunities for the youth of Manipur, the president appealed to the youth of Manipur “Let the dark days of violence and conflict be left hind. Let a new dawn emerge. Let us move ahead with faith in our collective future. Let me-assure you that the Government of India and the State Government of Manipur are determined and duty bound to ensure that every Manipuri lives with dignity and has equal rights and opportunities”. At the same time, he divulged that for this reason that several major economic development and infrastructure projects are being taken up in the State.
“I congratulate the people of Manipur for the successful and peaceful conduct of elections. Let us celebrate the fact that India is the largest democracy in the world. Elections to the 16th Lok Sabha are under way and the people of our country, including the people of this State have turned out in record numbers to cast their votes”.
He further informed that the Manipur University Students Union which was disbanded in 2009 is now being revived from the next academic session adding that he hoped that it would play an important and constructive role in improving the welfare of students of this University.
Meanwhile, referring to recent spate of attack against the North easterners, he termed the incident as unfortunate that the capital city of Delhi had some time back witnessed certain tragic incidents of attacks on young people from the north-east.
“We must ensure that the pluralistic character of our nation and the thread of India`s unity, which is the collective pride of all Indians, are not weakened by such unfortunate events. I am happy that both the Central Government and the Delhi Government have taken firm action, by not only apprehending and punishing the accused but also putting in place measures to ensure that such incidents do not recur” said the President.
Informing that India is on the threshold of new opportunities and higher achievements, assuming global leadership by India is no longer a utopian proposition, claimed the President adding that the educated youth of the country, will build this resurgent new India and use the education to become the change-agents in society.
Heartily welcoming the President, Manipur’s Governors, VK Dugal, brought to the noticed of the President that the University has put another feather in its cap by initiating International Service Programme in which supernumery seats are being offered to the students from Thailand and Myanniar in the Post-graduate programme.
Claiming that Manipur is one of the better performing States of the North East especially on Human Resource Development index, he pointed out that on a broad prescribed criteria of human development index it has maintained a consistent third rank amongst the North Eastern States over the last decade with the HDI having recorded an increase of nearly 25% from 0.426 to 0.521.
Nevertheless, the Governor admitted that there is still a long way to go for the University to compete with the best Universities in the country leave aside the top international Universities.
Meanwhile, moving outside the University`s boundaries, he appeal the President to keep his eye on the various socio-economic development programmes and major and important infrastructure projects such as the Jiribam-Imphal Railway Line, 400 KV line from Silchar to Imphal and Airport infrastructure (Imphal airport has recently been declared as international airport), etc. to ensure that the State continues to be on the path of progress and offer plentiful opportunities to its young population to be productively engaged and contribute in its growth.
“A word about the troubles the State has been facing on account of different groups. While the problems are on a slow decline, the State Government hopes to further intensify certain important policy initiatives and steps in near future so that a small number of people who have been waylaid into indulging anti-State, anti-National, and if I may say, anti-people activities which are hampering the economic growth and progress of the State can become part of the mainstream and join hands to take the State to the heights it deserves.”
Meanwhile, sources informed that following the failure to accommodate the Chief Minister on the dais alongside the President have invited criticism from concerned political circle.