Address by Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, Honourable Vice President at the 69th convocation ceremony of Panjab University in Chandigarh on May 6, 2022.

Chandigarh | May 6, 2022

“I am pleased to be here amidst all of you to address this 69th Convocation ceremony of Panjab University. As our country celebrates “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav” and recounts its achievements, I would like to underscore that education has played a major role in national development and will continue to do so in the future also. It is truly the most powerful catalyst that can change the pace and quality of a country’s development.

I am happy to preside over this University- a university with a glorious past, a very impressive present and a bright future. It is a university that has earned for itself a pride of place in the higher education landscape of the country. Thanks to the visionary leadership of successive Vice Chancellors and faculty members, the University has shaped the lives of many young men and women who have gone onto become leaders in various fields and have done the country proud.

At the outset, I would like to congratulate all graduating students on reaching a milestone of great significance in their lives and careers. Indeed, it is your diligence complemented by the strong support of your parents and the dedication of your gurus that has paved the way for this achievement.

This graduation ceremony should be a stepping stone for the students to continue learning and the faculty to improve the educational process. Universities, like yours, must be at the forefront of knowledge revolution, through path breaking innovations and cutting edge research. At the same time, there should be a closer interaction between Universities and government so that more robust policies can be formulated.

I am very happy that today the University has honoured Prof Ajay Kumar Sood ji, Principal Scientific Advisor to the government, who is one of the brightest alumnus produced by this University. In conferring on him the honorary doctorate, you have demonstrated to the entire academic community the essential spirit of excellence that the University has stood for. I am also delighted that Dr Krishna Ella and Smt Suchitra Ella, the pioneers of indigenous vaccine manufacturing have been chosen for the award. It is gratifying that Dr Krishna Ella had mentioned in a conversation about the excellent work being done by the chemistry department of this University.

I am pleased that excellence has been the touchstone in selecting the distinguished awardees today, each of whom have excelled in their respective fields whether it is Prof. Rajput in Education, Vaidya Kotecha in Indian medicine, Ms Rani Rampal in sports, Prof. Jagbir Singh in literature, Shri Onkar Singh Pahwa in industry and Shri Khandu Wangchuk Bhutia in fine arts. What you have honoured is the extraordinary talent  from all corners of our motherland  and the ceaseless quest for excellence dedicated to building a new vibrant India. It is most appropriate that we should celebrate excellence in the convocation of a University which has set high benchmarks and is constantly making all round efforts to achieve them.

Dear sisters & brothers,

Education of a good quality must become accessible to all, be affordable and should lead to a positive transformation in an individual's outlook, societal cohesion and inclusive national development. We must harness this power of education, and unleash the creative energies of young minds, hands and hearts. The new India we are dreaming of will be built on soaring aspirations and acquisition of new competencies. It will be built on the knowledge, skills and attitudes we impart in our classrooms and the innovation we foster in our workshops and laboratories. That's where the future of our nation lies and is being shaped every day.

Education should transform the way we look at the planet we live in and how we interact with the people who live with us on it. This University is in a sacred land where Guru Nanak and other Gurus showed that our lives should be illumined by five Virtues, "Sat" or honest, truthful behaviour, "Santokh" or contentment, not being greedy, "Daya" or compassion, “Nimrata” or humility and “Pyaar” or love, love of humanity, love of divinity. I hope these principles will continue to inspire us to be better human beings.

My dear students,

Today is indeed a special day in your lives as you stand poised on the cusp of a major transition—a point of intersection of the accumulated knowledge of formal education of the past and the promise of a wonderful future which lies ahead.

As you know, knowledge has no limits. Equipped with requisite skills and knowledge, in a sense, you are now embarking on a quest as explorers of higher levels of expertise in your chosen domains. Aim high, devote yourself to building a bright future for yourself and for the nation at large. Success and fulfilment will then follow.

Remember that the knowledge you have acquired has the power to change the world. Panjab University occupies a place of pre-eminence among institutions of higher learning. All of you are stepping out today with your head held high—proud to belong to an institution of excellence dedicated to the discovery, sharing and application of knowledge. An institution at which the academic environment promotes both holistic learning and personal growth.

Sisters and brothers,

The National Education Policy-2020 provides a roadmap for engaging educational institutions directly in national development. The NEP seeks to reorient the higher educational institutions of the country towards the challenges of the knowledge economy. It is set to bring about a sea-change in the education sector with its strong emphasis on interdisciplinary learning, research and knowledge generation and multi-lingual education. In particular, the NEP document rightly emphasizes the role of imparting education in one’s mother tongue. I am pleased to learn that NEP-2020 is being implemented by this University in right earnest.


Universities must create an environment of continuous professional development for teachers, while faculty members must focus on ground-breaking research and getting their research papers published in reputed international journals.

Universities should accord greater importance to implementable patents under Intellectual Property rights (IPR) to give a fillip to economy and industry. It is necessary to strengthen industry-institute linkages for better research outcomes.

Dear faculty members and students,

We should move away from mediocrity and not be satisfied with what we have achieved. I wish you to work towards future improvements so that in the course of the next decade, Panjab University ranks in the first 10 in the Universities across the globe.

I am sure that Panjab University will grow from strength to strength and become a leader in collaborative research.

I am also hopeful that Panjab University, in the days to come, will emerge as a leader for internationalization of education by creating mechanisms for collaborative research, faculty and cultural exchange programmes, dual degree programmes, and off-shore university campuses, among others.

I am happy that the University is making progress in all aspects of higher education under the able leadership of Prof. Raj Kumar, the Vice Chancellor.

I am hopeful that the Senate members will support the growth of this historic University by lending their time and sharing their expert advice to make PU one of the best Universities in the world.

I compliment the Vice Chancellor, the faculty members and the Senate members for steering the University so well. I wish all of you the very best in your future endeavours.

Thank you.

Jai Hind!”