Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday introduced the Central Universities (Amendment) Bill, which seeks to convert the National Rail and Transportation Institute (NRTU), a deemed-to-be university, into the Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya, an autonomous Central university.
The Bill seeks to expand the scope of the university from beyond just the Railways to cover the entire transport sector and support growth and modernisation in the field. The new university, once the Bill clears both Houses of Parliament, will be funded and administered by the Ministry of Railways.
“The Central Universities (Amendment) Bill, 2022 seeks to amend the Central Universities Act, 2009, inter alia, to provide for the establishment of Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya as a body corporate under the said Act,” Mr. Pradhan said in the ‘Statement of Objects and Reasons’ of the Bill.
He said the establishment of the Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya will address the need for talent in the strategically important and expanding transportation sector and meet the demand for trained talent to fuel the growth and expansion of the sector.
“The proposed university will reverse brain drain and create critical capability and capacity by developing Masters and doctoral degrees in transportation, go a long way in making the nation self-reliant in the transportation sector through its programmes for skilling and digitising India,” Mr. Pradhan said.
He said the university will carry out critically-needed research and development by creating innovative technologies to encourage local manufacturing and substitute the imports of expensive technology, equipment and products.
The university will also take additional measures for providing high quality teaching, research and skill development in diverse disciplines related to transportation, technology and management, including establishing centres in India and abroad, Mr. Pradhan said.
The University is named after the government’s flagship ₹100 lakh crore PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan for multi-modal connectivity. The Gati Shakti Master Plan is essentially a digital platform bringing together 16 Ministries, including roadways and railways for integrated planning and coordinated implementation of infrastructure connectivity projects such as Bharatmala, Sagarmala, and inland waterways, dry and land ports, and UDAN.