Nation Current Affairs 13 Nov 2019 Smriti Irani wants m ...

Smriti Irani wants more research for inclusive India

DECCAN CHRONICLE.
Published Nov 13, 2019, 2:12 am IST
Updated Nov 13, 2019, 4:40 am IST
Union Minister presides over VIT annual convocation.
Union minister for women & child development and textiles Smriti Irani at the annual convocation of VIT in Vellore on Tuesday. (Photo: DC)
 Union minister for women & child development and textiles Smriti Irani at the annual convocation of VIT in Vellore on Tuesday. (Photo: DC)

Chennai: Union minister for women & child development and textiles, Smriti Irani, called upon students to focus more on research to offer solutions to various problems and also strive in the spirit of Mahatma Gandhi in developing the rural sector and thereby ensure inclusive future India.

 As students step into the job market, they should think of having their own start-ups and possibilities of publishing research papers. Those who plan to establish their own firms and start-ups should consider their alma mater for incubating. For instance, she said the artificial intelligence (AI) in healthcare system market is set to grow by 40 per cent in 2021. It will reach $6.6 billion in 2021.

 

 Speaking at the annual convocation of VIT (Vellore Institute of Technology), Chennai, here on Tuesday, Smriti said already students of VIT appeared to garner a sizeable chunk of AI in healthcare system. Specifically mentioning the theses of the students: Jeevakala in computer aided diagnosis system, and Jackson Samuel in TB recognition system, the Minister said she was keen on reading these papers.

Smriti, who had earlier been Union HRD minister, said the country excelled in research and there is proof. “From 331 research papers published in 2006 we published 3,301 papers in 2016,” the minister said.

The Central minister who inaugurated the Mahatma Gandhi auditorium, commemorating the 150th birth anniversary of Gandhi, on VIT, Chennai campus, urged students to strive in his spirit to develop the rural sector.

 Though a lot needs to be done in empowering women, she was happy to note that out of 60 scholars who were awarded Ph.D on the occasion, 32 were girls. “I point this out not to show how women are beating men. I wanted to point out that even though girls outnumber boys in some fields, out of the 1,328 graduates receiving their degrees today, only 373 are women. I recognise that the gap should be filled and challenges met,” she said. Education, she said, is not a one-stop arrangement and not a relationship with self limited to institutional journey but continued the rest of life in order to attain excellence.

 VIT founder chancellor G. Viswanathan, who presided, called upon the government to provide free education to women and pointed out that facilities were needed to encourage women’s education. “I would like to urge the government to make education for all women free of cost. This can be the stepping stone for a gradual progression into free education for all,” the chancellor said.

 On the meager intake of students in medical colleges, he said though there are 13 lakh students desiring to study medicine, only 60,000 seats are available in the country. As a result our students are forced to pursue medical education in countries such as Bangladesh, Nepal and Kazakhstan. “We need to scale up, under Public-Private partnership if necessary, and provide education for all,” he added.

Managing Director and CEO of Indian Bank Padmaja Chundru, who was the guest of honour, said youth need to think beyond jobs. “We need employers, not employees,” she said and added that her bank was working with MSMEs and self-help groups to nurture talent and empower women in every part of India.

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