Speaking at the inauguration event of the “Gyan Kumbh” at Patanjali University in Haridwar, Ram Nath Kovind, the President of India, praised the participation in the event by high-level representatives of at least 131 universities from around the country, as well as Higher Education Ministers from 18 states. However, he went on to point out that the responsibility of education was a holistic one and that each and every individual who was in a position to do so bore the duty of being educators to the children. He went on to add that education was not only a pursuit of imparting academic knowledge, but of matters of heritage and cultural significance also. He continued by quoting examples of the contributions to education made by such historic figures as B.R. Ambedkar, Madan Mohan Malaviya, and even former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.
Also in attendance was the Chief Minister of Uttarakhand, Trivendra Singh Rawat, who agreed with President Kovind’s call to make education a universal effort. However, he went on to add that a large part of education in the modern era centers around research and discovery, something he lamented that most Indian institutions were not in the habit of providing for their students. He pointed out that of the 903 universities and 39,000 degree colleges in India, less than 40% overall provided research opportunities as part of their course offerings in the case of the former, while in the latter count the same percentage were the only ones to provide higher education opportunities.