Ensure urban amenities in rural areas, Kalam tells students

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

LUCKNOW - Former president A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Tuesday asked students in Uttar Pradesh to emulate a development model he had successfully implemented in Tamil Nadu years ago to bring urban amenities to rural areas.

Addressing the 7th convocation ceremony of the Uttar Pradesh Technical University (UPTU)here, Kalam sought to introduce the “Providing Urban Amenities in Rural Areas” (PURA) concept that he had experimented with at the Periyar Maniammai College of Technology for Women in the state’s Tanjore district.

“PURA envisages employment generation and creation of a number of entrepreneurs with the active support of self help groups (SHGs), through which we helped converting nearly 200 acre of wasteland into cultivable land with innovative water management scheme,” he said.

Calling upon the university’s students to emulate the model, the former president said it was now their turn to do the same.

“I am sure, with over 3 lakh students studying in different campuses in Uttar Pradesh, UPTU can make a very important development contribution,” he said, adding the PURA concept would go a long way in bridging the wide rural-urban divide in the state.

Kalam’s speech was heard simultaneously at all the 14 nodal centres of UPTU through video conferencing.

He also called upon the university authorities to consider designing a special academic course on PURA and integrated development “that could act as a platform for development of PURA complexes by aspiring engineering and management students and demonstrate the efficacy of the concept as a sustainable development model”.

Declaring that his ultimate aim was to ensure establishment of 7,000 such complexes across the country, Kalam said these centres would give a push to the growth in the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP).

Filed under: Education

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