Government to establish `knowledge park': Minister

IN A HUDDLE: Participants at a symposium on `South India-France Contact' in Pondicherry on Friday. - PHOTO: T. SINGARAVELOU

IN A HUDDLE: Participants at a symposium on `South India-France Contact' in Pondicherry on Friday. - PHOTO: T. SINGARAVELOU  

Staff Reporter

Institutes offering internationally certified courses in IT would be given spaces

PONDICHERRY: Education Minister M.O.H.F. Shahjahan on Friday said the Government planned to establish a "Knowledge Park" where institutes offering internationally certified courses in Information Technology would be given space.

"We may give subsidies to such institutes, which will provide training in IT along with English, French and German as foreign languages to IT professionals. For those training with these institutes, the government would also provide for the fees on the lines of CENTAC."

The Minister was speaking at the inauguration of a two-day international symposium on "Contact between South India and France: A Multidisciplinary assessment" organised jointly by the Department of French, Pondicherry University and the Department of Languages and Cultures, University of Paris-8. Mr. Shahjahan said the government would also take steps to develop French education at the school level. "When we get our own Education Board, we have the possibility to include a compulsory foreign language in the syllabus." Dean of the School of Humanities V.C. Thomas said 21 papers would be presented on various topics including religion, history and culture, art literature and translation. "The links between South India, especially Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry and Andhra Pradesh, and France are more than two centuries old. A large number of people of Indian origin went to work there but so far their social, economic and cultural aspects have not been recorded," he said.

R. Kichenamourty, former Dean, School of Humanities, Pondicherry University, explained the phenomenon of persons of Indian origin going to French colonies like Guadeloupe and Martinique in the 19th century to work in sugarcane plantations. "The saga of South Indians, who migrated there is very tragic, but at the same time very fascinating and heroic."

Mayor of Saint-Francois in Guadeloupe Ernest Moutoussamy, Vice-Consul of France in Pondicherry M. Francois Striby, Appasamy Murugaiyan of University of Paris-8 and Pondicherry University Registrar Loganathan were also present.

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