Minister for Health V.S. Sivakumar has said that the impetus for transforming the State capital into a knowledge city must come from schools.

He was inaugurating the cultural programmes held in connection with the silver jubilee celebrations of the Thiruvananthapuram Kendra of Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan here on Saturday.

Mr. Sivakumar plucked the strings of the veena to signal the start of the cultural fete.

Earlier, head of the royal family of erstwhile Travancore Uthradom Tirunal Marthanda Varma inaugurated the jubilee celebrations. He commended the Kendra for the huge strides it had taken in the field of education.

Mayor K. Chandrika honoured former office-bearers of the Kendra and a few staff members with 25 years of service to the institution.

“Older methods of teaching should be done away with, and schools must ensure overall growth not only in academics but also cultural activities,” V. Sivankutty, MLA, said.

Kochi Kendra director E. Ramankutty said a number of Bhavan’s institutions had cropped up in the State in the past few decades. “There are seven in Kochi, two in the capital, and more in the northern districts, amounting to 30 institutions in the State alone.

There is, however, a lack of schools in the stretch between Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram, which is something we need to amend,” he said.

Mr. Ramankutty echoed the need to promote value-based education that was not confined to the syllabus.

Vaikom Venugopal, associate secretary of the school, said the event did not only mark the 25t anniversary of the Kendra, but was also a time to draw up a clear vision for the future.

The formal inauguration was followed by a violin concert led by Attukal Balasubramanian and a dance performance by Meera Mohan and Amrutha Jayakumar.