Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressing students at the 38th convocation ceremony of Bharathidasan University
Tiruchirappalli (Tamil Nadu)
Congratulating students at the 38th convocation ceremony of Bharathidasan University, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said that the ancient Indian civilisation has always been centred around knowledge.
Addressing the 38th convocation ceremony of Bharathidasan University on Tuesday, PM Modi said that he was very happy to be visiting the 'beautiful state' of Tamil Nadu and engaging the state's youth.
"Being here at the 38th Convocation Ceremony of Bharathidasan University is special for me. This happens to be my first public interaction of 2024. I am happy to be in the beautiful state of Tamil Nadu and among all you young people. I am the first Prime Minister to have the privilege of coming here at the convocation. I congratulate the students who are graduating from here today and would also take this opportunity to commend their parents," Prime Minister Modi said.
Bringing up ancient centres of learning such as Nalanda and Takshashila universities, PM Modi said, "Our nation and civilisation have always been centred around knowledge. Some of our ancient universities such as Nalanda and Takshashila are well known and regarded for their grandeur and excellence even today. There have also been references in our celebrated ancient texts to places such as Kanchipuram housing great universities and centres of learning. Gangaikonda Cholapuram and Madurai were also great seats of learning in the ancient times."
He added that over the last few years, the Centre, under his leadership, has worked to speed up the country's development in keeping with the growing aspirations of the youth.
"You are stepping out into the world at a time when everyone, across sectors that contribute to being our growth engines, is looking at you with new hope. Youth represents energy. They stand out for their speed, skill, and scale. In the last few years, we have worked to match your speed and scale so that we could bring you more benefits," PM Modi added.
Commending the country's young population to contribute to the narrative of a new and aspirational India, PM Modi also heaped praise on Indian scientists, saying they have the country's status and prestige in the eyes of the world through the successful explorations into deep space with missions such as the 'Chandrayaan'.
"Our innovators took the number of patents that we hold to almost 50,000 from about 4,000 in 2014," PM Modi said, adding, "In the last 10 years, the number of airports in the country has doubled from 74 to nearly 150. Tamil Nadu has a vibrant coastline. You would be happy to know that the total cargo handling capacity of major ports in the country has doubled since 2014," he added.
Quoting from 'Puthiyathor Ulagam Seivom', verses of the celebrated Tamil poet Bharathidasan, after whom the university is named, PM Modi said he stood for creating a brave new world which is also the university's motto.
"Our scholars are taking the India story to the global audience like never before. Our musicians and artistes are also winning laurels for the country," he noted.
PM Modi also felicitated the gold medal winners at the 38th convocation ceremony of Bharathidasan University in Tiruchirappalli.
PM Modi was received in Tiruchirappalli by Chief Minister M.K. Stalin and Governor R.N. Ravi.
The Prime Minister is on a two-day visit to the South during which he will inaugurate, dedicate the nation and lay the foundation stone for multiple development projects worth more than Rs 19,850 crore. These projects pertain to the aviation, rail, road, oil and gas, shipping and higher education sectors.