Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday, December 22, said the way Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) helped society during the coronavirus crisis is unprecedented.
Addressing AMU students and faculty on the occasion of the university's centenary celebrations via video conferencing, PM Modi said AMU got thousands of tests for free, built plasma banks, isolation wards, and contributed a large sum of money to the PM CARES Fund, which manifests the university's seriousness of fulfilling its obligations to society.
The prime minister further stated that in the last 100 years, AMU has also worked to energise India's relations with several nations in the world, especially its cultural relations with the entire Islamic world, and that the history of education attached to AMU is India's valuable heritage.
He noted that the research done here in Arabic, Urdu, and Persian languages, as well as on Islamic literature, has given new energy to India's cultural communication with Islamic countries.
PM Modi added that he often met the university's alumni during his foreign visits, who very proudly say AMU is their alma mater.
The prime minister said that politics can wait but development cannot, and asserted that development should not be seen through the political prism.
Without naming anyone, he said development should not be seen through political prism.
"People spreading negativity can be seen everywhere," PM Modi said without elaborating.
His remarks assume significance in the background of the nearly month-long farmers' protest against three farm laws enacted by the Centre.
"There is a need to have common ground to build a new India that (ground) is Atmanirbhar Bharat," he said.
PM Modi noted with satisfaction that the dropout rate of Muslim girl students has reduced in the past few years.
He also said that the malpractice of triple talaq has ended.
Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank recalled the achievements of the AMU over the past century and the contributions of its alumni in various walks of life.
The last time a prime minister attended an event at AMU was Lal Bahadur Shastri in 1964. Before him, then prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru had visited the AMU four times.
Nehru had visited the campus for the first time in 1948, when an honorary doctorate was conferred on him at the annual convocation, followed by visits in 1955, 1960 and 1963.