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March 10, 2008
@ 01:12 AM

News reported by : Indian Express

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Varanasi, March 7 Former President A P J Abdul Kalam has suggested a "1-5-10 model" for rendering global brand value to Banaras Hindu University (BHU), set up by Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya in 1916.

He termed BHU as a shining star among all Indian universities. Interacting with professors at a closed-door meeting at K N Udupa Hall, Dr Kalam said "make BHU a global brand", said a senior professor who attended the meeting. The meeting was meant to acquaint Kalam with the rapid strides made by the university in various spheres of knowledge.

Elaborating on his 1-5-10 model, Kalam said: "BHU is a rare institution where 132 departments dealing in diverse disciplines are located on a single campus. Every department should first strive to make it number one in India. Once that is achieved, efforts will be needed to make the university feature among top five educational institutions in Asia, followed by measures to catapult every department of the central university among the top 10 institutions of the world." He also highlighted the need for stem cell therapy to treat diverse human ailments confronting mankind.

Accepting BHU's offer to be a visiting professor, Dr Kalam said he was ready to take classes of at least 60 students every year.

Dr Kalam, who inaugurated the International Seminar on Buddhism and World Cultures at the Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies (CIHTS) in Sarnath on Friday morning, was back at BHU later in the day. He addressed students and teachers at the Swatantrata Bhawan, which was a full house with students occupying the stairs and some crowding near the closed doors to catch a glimpse of the former President. It was an hour long 'class' where Dr Kalam administered the oath of creative excellence to students for nation building.

"Channelising the youth power, an 'ecological saint', Baba Balbir Singh Seechewal, has cleaned the Kali Bein rivulet, a tributary of Beas river in Punjab, which had once turned into a sewage stream. Be inspired by Babaji who accomplished the purging of the 160-km long rivulet on whose banks Guru Nanak Dev is believed to have attained enlightenment," he told the students.

He administered an oath of reviving the polluted Ganga to the students. "I will work and work for bringing back the glory of Ganga at Varanasi by launching the Ganga Revival Mission," he said, and the students repeated.

Appealing to the students to strive for visionary creative leadership for development of a prosperous India, Dr Kalam asked them to replicate the feats of Mahatma Gandhi, Vikram Sarabhai, J R D Tata and C V Raman. He also answered the questions asked by 10 select students, most of them representatives of the BHU student council. The questions spanned from the relation between economic and technological growth, gap between agricultural sciences and farmers to the declining state of ancient Indian mathematics (astrology).

In his answer to the last question, Dr Kalam's said: "You are asking a wrong person about the declining state of astrology. One of the leaders who supported my candidature for Presidency in 2002 even asked me on what auspicious time will I take oath of presidency. I replied: anytime till the earth spins on its axis and revolves around the sun."

Students could be seen breaking the security cordon to climb the stage to take a closer look at Kalam. They raced behind the fleet of cars as security personnel escorted the former President away.

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