“Inspired teachers link individual goals of students to the national goals”

Newsroom24x7 Staff

President Pranab Mukherjee with the In-Residence Inspired Teachers from Central Universities, at Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi on 11 June 2015.
President Pranab Mukherjee with the In-Residence Inspired Teachers from Central Universities, at Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi on 11 June 2015.

New Delhi: President of India Pranab Mukherjee has underscored that an Inspired Teacher is a value-oriented, mission-driven, self-motivated and result-oriented individual who works towards impacting the environment in a positive manner through his own actions as well as by imparting knowledge among students to help them achieve their potential.

An Inspired Teacher links the individual goals of the students to the societal and national goals, the President said  and quoted the Greek writer and philosopher, Nikos Kazant-zakis who had said “True teachers are those who use themselves as bridges over which they invite their students to cross; then, having facilitated their crossing, joyfully collapse, encouraging them to create their own”.

The President was addressing thirty-one Inspired Teachers from Central Universities across the country attending the ‘In-Residence’ programme of Rashtrapati Bhavan yesterday (10 June 2015) at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

The President said that there was a need to give dignity and recognition to quality teachers.  It was essential that such Inspired Teachers be recognized so that they have motivation and drive. The one week ‘In Residence’ programme at Rashtrapati Bhavan was part of that endeavour. Inclusion of members of the academic fraternity as accompanying delegates to foreign countries has also had a beneficial impact.

The President said that the big challenge we face in India today is the quality of teaching and learning in our higher academic institutions. Without upgrading the skill and knowledge quotient of a vast majority of the teachers, it would not be possible to improve standards of education in our country. India today needs many more competent teachers willing to dedicate themselves to improving the quality of education.

The President said that despite the proliferation of institutions for higher education seen in recent years, it is the quality of education imparted that poses serious concern. If we look into our past, we were leaders of higher education and could find seats of higher learning such as Nalanda, Takshashila, Vikramashila, Valabhi, Somapura and Odantapuri. These institutions dominated the world for a long period of time. However today, we lose meritorious Indian students who go abroad to pursue higher studies. Nobel laureates such as Har Gobind Khorana, Subrahmanyam Chandrasekhar and Dr. Amartya Sen did their graduate or post-graduate studies in Indian universities but went abroad for higher learning. We are capable of producing world-class scholars but lose them to foreign universities. He emphasized that a change in this position is possible through our collective efforts.

The Inspired Teachers were unanimous in saying that for them it was a lifetime opportunity to be participants of the week long ‘In Residence’ Programme at Rashtrapati Bhavan. They also said that this had been an empowering, engaging and motivating experience for them and made them feel more responsible to excel in their role as teachers.

The In-Residence programme for Inspired Teachers was announced by the President of India at the Annual Conference of Vice Chancellors of Central Universities on 5 February 2015. Similar programmes already exist for writers, artists, grass root innovators and NIT students.


Shadow of a possible cyber attack on Iran nuclear negotiations

Newsroom24x7 Desk

Iran nuclear programWashington DC: After the disclosure by the Swiss Attorney General yesterday that they had searched a house in Geneva and seized computer material linked to a possible cyber attack on the Iran nuclear negotiations, the official stand of United States on this sensitive issue is that they have always been aware of the need to take steps to ensure the confidentiality of these discussions and there is nothing new to announce in that regard.

Jeff Rathke, Director, US department of State Press Office made this point at the daily press briefing here on Thursday.

When asked whether the US had increased the security to ensure the confidentiality of the negotiations after reports of possible Cyber attack and also if the US was assisting the Swiss authorities in their investigations and whether or not they had sought any information from the United States about this? Rathke replied: “we’ve always been aware of the need to take steps to ensure the confidentiality of our discussions. So I don’t have any new steps to announce in that regard.”

On being asked by a journalist – “Does the U.S. trust that the Swiss or the Austrians can provide secure facilities in order for these international talks to be conducted, or is the U.S. now looking at trying to find a venue, perhaps in one of the P5+1 countries, where, ostensibly, there’s a little more of a vested interest in trying to protect the sanctity of these negotiations?” Rathke’s response was: “As we’ve said throughout the negotiations and – we’ve taken steps throughout the negotiations to ensure that confidential details and discussions remain behind closed doors. We have close working relationships with Switzerland, with Austria, and indeed with other European partners. So I don’t have anything beyond that to add.

Pressed for steps being taken by the US to ensure confidentiality of nuclear negotiations, Rathke said: we don’t negotiate in public, we also take steps to make sure that the classified and sensitive negotiating details stay behind closed doors. I’m not going to get further into the details of those steps that we take.