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regular-article-logo Wednesday, 22 May 2024

Empowered women key to economic growth: President Droupadi Murmu emphasizes education's impact

She was addressing at the 165th convocation of the University of Madras

PTI Chennai Published 06.08.23, 03:44 PM
President Droupadi Murmu

President Droupadi Murmu File Photo

President Droupadi Murmu on Sunday said educated women can make a greater contribution to the economy, provide leadership in various sectors and create a positive impact on society.

In her address at the 165th convocation of the University of Madras here, she expressed joy at the fact that more than 50 per cent of the about 1.85 lakh students currently studying at the varsity and its affiliated colleges are girls.

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"I am delighted to note further that 70 per cent of the 105 students who received gold medals today are girls," she further said. "The University of Madras is a shining example of gender equality." By investing in the education of girls, "we are investing in the progress of our nation," she added.

She underlined that educated women can make greater a contribution to the economy, provide leadership in various sectors and create a positive impact on society.

Congratulating the graduating students, Murmu said the university, founded in 1857, has the distinction of being one of the oldest modern universities in India. Throughout its journey of over 165 years, University of Madras has adhered to high standards of academics, providing an environment that fosters intellectual curiosity and critical thinking, she said.

The varsity has been a cradle of learning, producing countless scholars, leaders, and visionaries. They have also influenced the world of learning in the global context. "Your university has also served as a lighthouse, playing a pivotal role in the establishment and growth of many reputed universities in the southern region of India," she told the graduating batch.

"It has a rich history and glorious legacy. It is a matter of great pride that six former Presidents -- S Radhakrishnan, V V Giri, Neelam Sanjiva Reddy, R Venkataraman, K R Narayanan and A P J Abdul Kalam -- were students of this University and walked the same corridors that you walk through today." The illustrious freedom fighter who also served as the country's first Indian Governor General Chakravarti Rajagopalachari, iconic women personalities of the freedom movement Sarojini Naidu and Durgabai Deshmukh, Nobel laureates Sir C V Raman and S Chandrasekhar, former Chief Justices of India Justice M Patanjali Shastri and Justice K Subbarao all were once students of Madras University.

"The very idea that your university has produced such great people should make you strive hard for achieving excellence in the pursuit of learning and nation building." She told the outgoing batch that the alumni of the varsity can play a significant role in its growth as a global centre of excellence. As the university has contributed to their success in many ways, they should try to give back to their alma mater, she said in her speech.

Speaking about the future role that the varsity should play, the President said it should be at the forefront of finding learning-based solutions to the problems being faced by the nation and the world.

Addressing the serious issue of mental health, particularly student suicides, the President said, "I appeal to all the students to never let any anxiety overwhelm you. There is always an opening or opportunity which may not be visible for some time. Have faith in your abilities and keep moving forward." Murmu also spoke about the importance of holisitic development, quoting verses of nationalist poet Subramania Bharati that encourage learning both scripture and science, scientific pursuits/exploration and cleanliness.

Taking off from the Tamil poet, the President also spoke about Tamil literary culture. The Tamil Nadu region has been a cradle of civilisation and culture; the rich tradition of Sangam literature is a precious heritage of the nation, she said. Hailing the didactic Tamil classic 'Tirukkural' and its widom, she said it has been guiding all of us for centuries.

The great Bhakti tradition of poetry originated in Tamil Nadu and it was taken to the north of the nation by wandering saints, she noted and remarked how the temple architecture of Tamil Nadu, and the statues and sculptures are a tribute to human excellence.

Earlier, Murmu was accorded a guard of honour at Raj Bhavan.

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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