“Agriculture must be rejuvenated through value addition''

Former President A. P.J. Abdul Kalam on Sunday said new markets could be created through rural potential and employment that would give rise to public-private community partnerships and international partnerships.

Delivering the convocation address at the 32nd annual convocation of Anna University on Sunday, he said it was time that technological innovation was encouraged in our thinking to rejuvenate, in particular, agricultural and rural sector through value addition.

“I foresee possibilities of creating new markets through rural potential and employment, giving rise to interesting possibilities of Public-Private-community partnerships and international partnerships. Above all, we need effective policy alignments to suit the conditions. Also, scientists and technologists have to work in appropriate region-specific rural technologies to transform the Indian rural sector in a vibrant socio-economic entity,” Mr. Kalam said.

Noting that India was focusing on bringing sustainable development through rural and urban infrastructure for better and enhanced delivery of essential public services on time, and on reforming the financial system for better global integration and on a proactive regulatory system, he said the young graduands had a great opportunity of transforming India into an economically developed nation.

Talking on the theme ‘A sustainable development system for the nation,' he asked the fresh graduates to ensure that the applications of science and technology reached the most underprivileged population as more than 750 million people in India and three billion in the world were living in villages and hence any mission towards global prosperity and happiness had to be inclusive of the rural regions.

While urging Anna University to be get itself placed among the top four universities in the world, he asked the officials to create Anna University PURA (Providing Urban Amenities in Rural Areas), for complexes for 20 to 30 villages having over one lakh population.

Governor K. Rosaiah presided over the convocation.

P. Mannar Jawahar, Vice Chancellor, Anna University, said ANUSAT, the indigenously designed and developed micro-satellite, had completed 15,283 orbits over 994 days on Sunday since its launch on April 20, 2009. Though its life was estimated to be two years, it was still orbiting successfully and was responding to commands from the ground station at MIT campus, Anna University.

In all 55,128 candidates were awarded degrees. They included A.K. George, who was mentored by Mr. Kalam for the last few years on the subject ‘Enhancing capabilities of mentally challenged children through information technology'.

P. Palaniappan, Higher Education Minister asked the graduates to be job providers instead of job seekers and explained the various initiatives announced by the State government to increase the Gross Enrolment Ratio.

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