Chief Minister Nitish Kumar joined hundreds of students of Nav Nalanda Mahavihara in requesting the Minister of Human Resource Development, Kapil Sibal, to take necessary steps so that the ‘deemed university’ status of the institute is not revoked.
The institute, established with the efforts of the first President of India, Dr Rajendra Prasad in 1951, by the Government of Bihar, was taken over by the Department of Culture, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India in 1994. The institute was granted ‘deemed university’ status in 2006 by the Union Ministry of HRD.
The Union Ministry of Human Resource Development had announced to take away the deemed university status of several institutes including that of Nav Nalanda Mahavihara.
“The news has evoked strong sentiments in the minds of the students as well as the people of Bihar. This step will adversely impact our efforts to revive the historical legacy of Bihar. In fact, the institute needs more resource and support from the central government,” wrote the chief minister to Sibal.
The Institute, which started functioning as a ‘deemed university’ in 2007, has about 540 students out of which 125 are foreign monks from various south-eat Asian countries. The university offers various degree and Ph.d courses in Pali, Sanskrit, Philosophy, Buddhist studies, English and Hindi. The University is also working in a unique project of mapping of Nalanda, Rajgir and areas around it.