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Nalanda univ bill passed

india Updated: Aug 22, 2010 00:36 IST

Rajya Sabha on Saturday passed a bill to establish a transnational university at Nalanda in Bihar, once considered a seat of learning in ancient India.

The university, to be set up under the guidance of an interim board, headed by Nobel laureate Amartya Sen, proposes to attract students and faculty from 16 East Asian countries.

JD(U) MP and member of Nalanda Mentor Group, N.K. Singh said the new university will be international, secular and will represent the true Nalanda tradition. Quoting Sen, he said, "When Oxford (UK) was being inaugurated, Nalanda was being destroyed — it did represent transition of knowledge from Asia to Europe. We want to rebuild Asia and regain knowledge leadership. Nalanda will become an icon of Asian renaissance."

Senior Congress leader, Dr Karan Singh said the proposed university should have a transnational character. "I do not accept that all universities must necessarily be under one super czar. After all, we are living in a pluralistic world. Many technical universities are now developing. Therefore, there is no necessity that they must all be under the same ministry," he said.