“I am happy to be with all of you at the 12th Convocation of this prestigious institute. A convocation is always an important milestone both for the institution as well as for the students. It is a milestone for the institution as it moves on its path of excellence. It is a milestone for the students because it marks the successful completion of a phase of learning and the beginning of a new phase. It is a moment of celebration. It is also a moment of reflection and rededication.
I extend my heartiest congratulations to every student on their achievements, my sincere appreciation to the parents for nurturing their children’s talents and my greetings to the faculty and the management on pursuing the quest for excellence with determination.
My dear students, you are graduating from an institute that is named after one of the great visionary institution builders of our country – Bharat Ratna Madan Mohan Malaviya. It would be good to recall that it was he who popularised the national motto ‘Satyameva Jayathe’ which is inscribed under our national emblem. It is the unflinching commitment to truth that characterizes our freedom fighters. It is this commitment that has continued to inspire us all after independence.
In my view, true education enables us to get to the truth. It enables us to discover new realities. It pushes the frontiers of knowledge and fosters innovation.
Your education journey takes you to new areas. You have during your stay in this Institute, acquired a vast amount of information. Hopefully, you have deepened your knowledge and gained new insights. Famous poet T.S. Eliot had questioned:
“Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?”
“Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?”
Don’t lose your way in the maze of information. Don’t stop with acquiring bits of information. Reflect, think and discuss. Once you connect various disparate facts, you gain knowledge. But knowledge is still incomplete. You need insight, experience and the ability to make sound judgments. This is wisdom. Unless you move on to this level of making a clear distinction between good and bad, ethical and unethical, just and unjust, you remain at the periphery of education. You remain at the level of ‘Jnana’ or ‘Vignana’. What you should inculcate is ‘Viveka’, the wisdom to prioritize, wisdom to use knowledge for your well being and the welfare of humanity.
You are graduating from one of the premier institutions in the country. You have acquired knowledge and skills to make further progress in your educational endeavours. Please remember that in education there are no ‘full stops’, there are only ‘commas’. You should continue to learn and update your knowledge. You should aspire to be the best. You should have the humility to acknowledge the gaps in your knowledge. You should have the ability to access knowledge from all over the world. After all, knowledge has no boundaries. Ours is a country that has welcomed noble thoughts from all over the world. Narrow, tunnel vision creates divisions. You need a broad, global vision to be a global leader.
I want you to widen your perspectives and acquaint yourself with the rich cultural legacy you have inherited. As famous philosopher Will Durant has said:
“India will teach us the tolerance and gentleness of mature mind, understanding spirit and unifying, pacifying love for all human beings”.
You must study our history and draw lessons from it. This will enable you to gain the confidence to take bold decisions, drawing from the best thoughts of our ancient sages and applying them to contemporary realities.
You will have the courage born out of conviction to take positive action. This conviction will be born out of knowledge. That’s why you must constantly keep updating your knowledge.
Knowledge is power. Power to do good; Power to make a positive difference in our lives.
Some of you will be entering the world of work after your graduation. You will be applying the knowledge and skills you have acquired here in your workplace. The employers will judge you by your performance, your abilities and your attitude. I am hoping that you will make a mark in your chosen professions. Let me remind you, dear students, your ‘attitude’ can help you reach higher ‘altitude’. In-fact, that’s what the motto of your Institute says – ‘Yogah Karmasu Kaushalam’. You should strive to constantly do better. Make innovation your watchword and excellence your guiding principle.
You are inheritors of a long, illustrious heritage. The ancient India was, by many historical accounts, a very advanced India. Mathematicians like Aryabhata, Bhaskara and Brahmagupta, physicians like Sushrutha who could perform cataract and gall bladder surgeries and cure leprosy in the 3rd century are well known. From the concept of ‘zero’ to ‘decimal system’, from the production of steel to cultivation of cotton and jute, from the metallurgical marvels like the Iron pillar in Delhi to astronomical advances like the sundials, ancient Indian scientists had made a remarkable contribution to science and technology. The Jantar Mantar in Jaipur, as you are aware, is a collection of nineteen architectural astronomical instruments built in 1734. India’s recent advances in Science and Technology, including Information Technology and Space Technology, are a continuation of this grand scientific tradition.
You, dear students, have an opportunity to build upon this strong scientific and technological knowledge base. Now, you can combine the best ideas from across the world and extend the frontiers of knowledge. You also have a unique opportunity to apply the state-of-the-art technology to the Indian context. This is the larger picture you should keep in mind. This should be your mission.
You are among the fortunate few who have been able to graduate from an Institute like this. You have before you a resurgent India – an India with enormous opportunities and infinite possibilities. Please tap into these and discover your hidden potential. While charting out your career path, choose the one that excites you. Choose the path that contributes to your growth. Choose the path that makes our country one of the best in the world. Choose the path that makes our planet a better place to live in.
I wish you all the very best in your future endeavours. You will be shaping your world through your thoughts, speech and actions. As Mahatma Gandhiji used to say – “Be the change you want to see in the world”.
I congratulate the Director and the faculty members for striving hard to make this one of the best academic institutions in the country. I wish you all many more fruitful years of accessing, expanding, and transmitting knowledge and skills.
I thank you for giving me an opportunity to be with you on this happy occasion reminding all of us of the noble education mission of this great institution. You have maintained the standards over the last many years and you are among the best technical educational institutions in the country. I hope you will make further improvements and enhance the quality of learning opportunities in the years to come."