Phagwara (Punjab) [India], May 2 : President Pranab Mukherjee on Tuesday reiterated his call for enhancing the quality of basic as well as applied research in institutions of higher learning in India.
Addressing the eighth convocation of Lovely Professional University (LPU) here, President Mukherjee stated that good placement records alone do not bear testimony to an institution's international ranking.
He stressed that for the quality of higher education in the country to improve, it was necessary that importance be given to nurturing intellectual capital in institutions.
"India, with its universities in Taxila and Nalanda had been a world leader in higher education for more than 1300 years.
It was time that all our institutions of higher learning once again strove to become magnets for mighty minds - students and faculty from all across the world.
The trend of Indian students going abroad for higher studies will have to be reversed, and only then, will our education system succeed," he said.
"In a nation of 1.3 billion people, 757 universities and more than 38,000 degree colleges are insufficient.
More people require access to higher education. However, increasing numbers alone is not enough. It is essential that mind is applied to enhancing numbers with commensurate enhancement in the quality of education being offered," President Mukherjee added.
He also emphasised the importance of research and cross-fertilisation of ideas in higher education institutions, adding that a free flow of ideas from across the world led to flowering of great diversity in India - a key quality of the Indian civilization.