Union Minister of State for Human Resource Development D. Purandeswari said on Saturday that universities and institutions of higher learning should give importance to innovation and innovators.

She was speaking as the chief guest at the 24th annual convocation of T.A. Pai Management Institute (TAPMI) here.

Ms. Purandeswari said that the 21st century was regarded as the “knowledge century”. But knowledge without innovation had no value. Innovation should become a way of life. The youths should imbibe the spirit of innovation.

“We need to build structures to support innovation. We should launch an innovation movement just like the Freedom Movement, which we launched for our Independence,” she said.

India, along with Brazil and China, are among the emerging markets. Half of the world's population is in these markets. They contribute nearly 40 per cent of the global GDP, she said. India was now sitting on a huge foreign exchange reserve.

Indian economy had showed its resilience during the global economic meltdown as our country managed to maintain growth rates of between 7 per cent and 9 per cent.

But as an emerging market, India would have to accept many challenges. The country would have to develop leadership at various levels to face these challenges. Hence, it was essential that students developed leadership qualities.

In the next 30 years, India would reap the demographic dividends. It was necessary to channel youth power in the right direction. It was also necessary that the process of the economic reforms was people-centric. “We should take all people, including those belonging to weaker sections and living in rural areas, together with us,” she said.

Chairman and co-founder of TeamLease Pvt. Ltd., Bangalore, Manish Sabharwal, said that India was now a prosperous and secular country. Students should think big, be authentic, recognise the power of luck and timing, believe in team spirit, follow ethics in their career and take more risks, he said.

Awards

Manish Manav bagged the Best All-Round Student Award, while Priyank Nandkumar Dada got the TAPMI Achiever Award. The first three places in academic achievement went to Vivek Gidwania, Shalina Mukherjee and Dhiraj Agarwal and Neerav Vohra (joint winners).

Dean (Academics) Simon George welcomed the gathering. Chairman of the governing council Ramdas Pai was present.

More In: Mangaluru