President Pranab Mukherjee urged people to look beyond high grades and good jobs and emphasise on ground-breaking innovations, as he hailed the legacy of the iconic Presidency University here on Friday.
At the star-studded event to mark the institution’s bicentenary, where several former students gathered from all over the country, President Mukherjee said securing good jobs was not enough in life.
“It is not enough for students to pass exams with high grades and take up professions of their choice. For building the India of our dreams, we need to focus on an environment where the youth can speak their minds and have the confidence to look for ground-breaking, creative solutions,” he said.
Recalling the history of the institution, Mukherjee added, “This institution, which was established primarily to educate the lower bureaucracy of the colonial rulers, went on to not only question and reform everything archaic, but also emerge as the hotbed of anti-colonial ideas and action.”
Even as he spoke about how the college, now a university, was a place of liberal scientific and secular education based on western ideas of nationalism, he spoke about the need of innovation.
“What purpose are we serving by selling our top brains to promote and advance their sale proceeds? Do we need our IIT graduates to sell detergents?” Mukherjee asked at the college.
He also sought engagement with various stake holders, including the government, industry and civil society.
Earlier in the day, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh reminded the students that the best was yet to come for the institution.