Kochi, Apr 1 (PTI): The curriculum for higher education should be refashioned to foster cultural nationalism and bring prosperity for the country, speakers at a seminar organised by a Sangh outfit said here today.
They also made an impassioned plea to create a conducive atmosphere in universities to instill confidence among Dalits.
The views were expressed at a seminar on ‘Nationalism – Challenging Perception and New Challenges’, organised by Bharatheeya Vichara Kendram, as part of P Parameswaran Navati Celebrations here.
The seminar was addressed by Sanjay Paswan, former union Minister; Prasanna Deshpande, Professor, Fergusson College, Pune and Prafulla Ketkar, Chief Editor, Organiser Weekly.
Dr C I Issac, Vice President, BVK, was the moderator, organisers said in a release here.
“Neo-liberals have entrenched themselves in the academic set up under the pretext of cultural studies,” said Deshpande.
“This was started in 1925 at Frankfurt Institute as part of the left ideologies and later it was spread to all other universities under the Colombia University,” he said.
He also said that the neo-liberals have now ‘captured’ the Indian universities which would destroy the country s cultural nationalism.
“Though communism is aimed at organising workers, it is now targeting the students.It led to the anti-national slogans being raised at the JNU campus recently,” Deshpande said.
He said educational institutions are now being used to mobilize students and act in a manner that defies the laws of the country.
A ‘sinister atmosphere’ has been allowed to prevail in the universities in the absence of proper studies of nationalism, Deshpande added.
Paswan said deliberate attempts were being made by certain quarters to scare the Dalits in the country.
“Even after three generations, the reservation system has failed to benefit the Dalits, which itself proves that their exploitation continues unabated.”
“They have the ability to think and act. They should be rescued from the forces which are trying to wreck their future,” Paswan was quoted as saying the release.
Paswan said the downtrodden must be taken into confidence and treated as equals. “We should create conducive conditions to achieve their upliftment,” he said.
Ketkar said it is imperative to reconstruct the country based on nationality. “Problems erupt whenever the concept of nationality is compromised and destroyed,” he said.
Late Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru was of the opinion that India is an emerging nation,he said,but the Left believed there should not be a nation like India and this led to 50 years of delay in building up the nation, Ketkar said.
He said Parameswaran was among those who played a key role in fostering the ethos of nationalism in a selfless manner.His life should be taken as a role model for reconstruction of the nation, he added.
A session on Development and Environment will be held on Sunday.
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh will address the valedictory function.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.