Katra: Terming technology foresight as
key to rapid development in the country, President Pratibha
Patil on Friday emphasised on innovation in high-end cutting-edge
technologies as well as at the level of common man and
ensuring their effective delivery especially in rural areas.
Patil noted that the country looks at 2010-2020 as the
decade of innovations to encourage the use of science and
technology and research and development in the nation.
"Choosing the right technologies to put the nation or
your own state on the path of rapid development requires
technology foresight. We need large scale industrialisation
and we also need to have effective rural technology delivery,"
the President said.
"Recognising that science and technology, research and
development and their applications, require a boost in the
country, we are looking at the ten years from 2010 to 2020 as
the decade of innovation," she said addressing the third
convocation of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University (SMVDU) here.
Patil said the country needs new solutions- technological
and otherwise- in many areas to achieve sustainable growth in
agriculture, in energy, in renewable energy, in urban
development, in water management and in manufacturing.
"Innovations are required at the level of both high-end
cutting edge technologies, as well as at a level of common
usage by people in their daily lives," she said.
Underlining the importance of value-based quality
education for young people, the President suggested a
structured and thoughtful process for increasing the capacity
of higher education institutions and for proper channelisation
"The challenge of expanding higher education is not just
about making room for an ever larger number of students, it is
also about having these numbers flow into the right streams
and sectors," Patil, who is on a two-day visit to Jammu and
"A nation requires a range of qualifications and
professional skills. A comprehensive education system must,
therefore produce people who can meet job requirements, who
can become good professionals because of their aptitude,
whether they are doctors, lawyers, teachers, engineers,
researchers, scientists or managers. It needs to produce
innovators and entrepreneurs," she said.
Describing education as an invaluable asset, the
President said that it must "reach all boys and girls of every
section of our society, so that the aspiration to realise
their full potential becomes a reality for all in our
Encouraging the use of information-technology in the
education system, the President asked students to make its
"Today, for example, a student through the internet can
access databases of other educational institutions or can join
discussions on topics of interest. Access to information has
become a function of a click of the mouse...I hope that the
students will utilise this facility in a judicious manner to
increase their knowledge base, and not while away their energy
in undesired directions," Patil, who arrived yesterday on a
three-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir, said.
Earlier during the day, President visited the ancient
Raghunathji temple in Jammu.
The University is spread in about 474 acres amid pristine
beauty close to the famous Shri Mata Vaishno Devi temple.
Patil will also visit the shrine situated at an altitude of
5,300 feet in Trikuta Hills.
The President asked the students to imbibe the right
attitude to promote cooperation and friendship among
people while adhering "the path of reason and the path of
"It requires tolerance and abandoning of narrow
ideologies. This will make you a good citizen of the country.
For in life, even as you seek individual success, you have a
duty to also contribute to nation building efforts," she
The President also awarded more than 600 students for
their commendable academic performance during a ceremony
attended by Jammu and Kashmir Governor NN Vohra, Chief
Minister Omar Abdullah and Vice Chancellor of the university
Professor RNK Bamezai among others.