China donates $1 mn for Nalanda University revival
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Last Updated: Tuesday, November 15, 2011, 20:20
New Delhi: Efforts to revive the Nalanda University got a major boost on Tuesday when China gave a cheque of USD 1 million for building a Chinese-type library, marking the first donation for the ambitious project.

Piloted by the Ministry of External Affairs, the Nalanda University revival project has been gaining steam in the past few years with the enactment of a law to give the varsity a stand-alone status with special provisions.

Chinese Ambassador to India Zhang Yan formally handed over the cheque to Vice-Chancellor designate of the University Gopa Sabharwal, fulfilling a commitment made by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao during his visit to India last year.

The event came on a day when the new logo of the proposed institution -- that represents Asian interconnectivity and harmony between man and nature -- was unveiled.

The Chinese Premier had announced in December, 2010 that the country would provide USD one million for building a Chinese-type library at the proposed varsity.

Noting that Chinese scholars gained "immense benefit" from the ancient Nalanda University, Zhang said the donation was one of the "important and meaningful endeavours" that his country was taking in reviving the institution.

"The ancient Nalanda University is a monumental example of cultural exchanges between India and China. The revival project is also a key cooperative project of the East Asia Summit," he said.

The Ambassador also pledged that the Chinese Government is ready to do whatever it can for reviving the ancient seat of learning.

"The money will be used to construct a Chinese-style library at the campus and we are ready to contribute everything for the revival," the Ambassador said.

He also recalled the ancient links between China and the University through famous Chinese Buddhist monk and traveller Xuan Zang (Huen-Tsang).

Expressing her gratitude, Sabharwal said the university will be in regular touch with the Chinese Government with regard to construction of the library which will come up in Chinese style.

"We have not yet decided on the design. But there could be an entire floor in Chinese architecture at the library building. We will seek the Chinese Government's help whenever we need," she said.

Though many countries like Thailand, Loas and Singapore have promised donations to the University, China is the first country to fulfil its pledge.

She said the University would soon float global tenders for design of the proposed institution.


First Published: Tuesday, November 15, 2011, 20:20

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