Address by Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, Honourable Vice President of India at the 2nd Convocation of National Institute of Technology, in Chumukedima, Dimapur, Nagaland on May 23, 2018.

Dimapur, Nagaland | May 23, 2018

“I deem it a matter of privilege and honor to inaugurate the First Convocation of the newly established National Institute of Technology in Nagaland. It is indeed a major milestone in the history of technical education in Nagaland. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the entire NIT family for inviting me as the Chief Guest for the First Convocation.

I am very pleased to be here to join you in celebrating this wonderful occasion.

Nagaland, a state, rich in its traditional heritage is growing fast. The setting up of NIT is an indication of the growing importance of this region.

Apart from NIT, I am glad that an Institute of Communication & Information Technology (ICIT) was established by the Government of India at Mokokchung with the assistance of World Bank. I am told that ICIT is also offering skill development courses and organizes Technology Transfer Programmes for the Rural Community. The institute must constantly upgrade the skills of the youth by offering new courses in tune with the demands of the local industries. I am told that the School of Engineering and Technology started by Nagaland University, is offering degree level programmes in Engineering including Management.

I admire the natural beauty of NIT's location and I am sure that this will become one of the leading centres of technical education in the country.Admittedly, it is doing appreciably well in catering to educational needs of students in Nagaland and the neighboring states.

I foresee that NIT Nagaland, being a technical Institute of national importance, will play a significant role in filling the industrial gap in Nagaland, by bringing industries, the corporate sector and technocrats from other parts of our country to Nagaland for its societal growth and uplift. I am sure, the students passing out from the portals of NIT will not only be well qualified engineers, but many of them will also become successful entrepreneurs in their chosen fields.

Students from this State and other North-Eastern states should take full advantage of this institute in acquiring world class technical education.

I am pleased to know of the efforts of this institute in reserving home state quota completely for the Naga students. I wish NIT Nagaland to grow and succeed in all its efforts and reach the greatest heights.

The real strength of any academic institute lies in maintaining high standards of excellence through its teaching and top quality research. This can be achieved only through dedication, discipline and determination of the faculty and students. There should not be any compromise on quality of teaching and research.

I would like to extend my congratulations to all the graduates on the completion of your education here. You all should be proud of your accomplishments. Seeing all of you today, looking lively and energetic, I wish to remind you that this is a big moment in your lives. I know that you all must be excited and eager to enter into a new world.

The knowledge and technical skills acquired by you will form the main pillars of your professional career. But the life skills acquired by you and the values of ethics, morality, integrity and compassion are equally important in navigating through the challenges and contributing to building an inclusive New India.

Sisters and brothers, the country is on the threshold of emerging as one of the leading economies in the world in the coming years. The country’s economy is projected to grow at 7.3 per cent or 7.4 per cent in 2019 by different global agencies. With 65 per cent of the people below the age of 35 years, the country needs to tap and convert this huge human resource capital into a demographic dividend and spur the economic growth.

In fact, a recent news report mentioned that a study by a global executive search firm forecast a talent deficit of 85 million workers by 2030 across developing and developed economies. It said that India was the only major economy with potential for talent surplus by 2030 and might even challenge America’s position in technology, media and telecommunications sector. So dear students, you will have plenty of opportunities as the country’s economy garners further momentum in the coming years.

I am sure that all of you will make the best use of your skills and talents to serve the society and the country. As stated by Nelson Mandela, former President of South Africa, "education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world". Be the change agents for ushering in a better future for every citizen of the country.

Dear students, remember that your education does not end with the acquisition of a degree or by securing employment. Learning is a life-long process. Education is meant to enlighten you, develop you into a holistic individual, strengthen your character and inculcate the qualities required to face any challenging situation with a sense of equanimity.

You are going to commence a new chapter. First and foremost requirement is to set clear-cut goals. Second is to strive relentlessly to achieve those goals. Anything can be achieved through hard work, perseverance and by adopting the right attitude. Your character is formed by the manner in which you surmount the challenges. You will experience highs and lows of life, but never lose sight of the goals you set for yourselves.

Success largely depends largely upon the ability to execute efficiently any task on hand.

Graduation day is a bit like looking into a kaleidoscope. It is full of pictures jumbled together—images from the past and those envisioning the future.

You are now armed with one of the most important tools needed to forge your path ahead. It is not the degree itself that counts — it is about what you have learnt along the way and what you intend to do with the education you have received in your journey till today. Be true to yourself and remain committed to the values of honesty and integrity.

Today you have achieved a milestone in your career. Remember that it was made possible by the wonderful support of your families and the encouragement of your teachers. I would like you all to acknowledge and appreciate the support of all those who made it happen.

North-Eastern region is endowed with abundant natural resources, but difficult terrain, dispersed habitations, poor connectivity and inadequate infrastructure have been obstacles in realizing its true potential. There is an immense investment potential in the Northeastern region and ASEAN countries should not be allowed to miss that opportunity. In this, the Central and State Governments will have to work hand-in-hand. Improving Connectivity is most important to bring the North East region into the mainstream. Air connectivity is also vital for promoting tourism, business and people-to-people contact.

We strongly believe that the corridors of connectivity should be converted into corridors of economic growth with a symbiotic market model of development.

Finally, I would like to congratulate you all on your success and wish an extremely satisfying and successful career to each one of you.