The Vice President of India, M. Venkaiah Naidu has said that the union of science and spirituality was the need of the hour for promoting a society that is free of terror, violence, poverty and discrimination. He said that the unique combination of science and spirituality would provide solutions to the contemporary challenges faced by the world.Inaugurating the dome-prayer hall & library and world parliament of science, religion and philosophy at MIT campus, Pune today, the Vice President said that peace is the foremost prerequisite for progress and development. One cannot pay attention to development if there is tension, he added. He reiterated that all the countries in the world should come together to stamp out the menace of terrorism. Condemning all forms violence, he said that only ballot can provide solution not bullet.Appreciating the architectural marvel of the dome having a diameter of 160 feet, he said that it was not just a structure made of bricks and cement but it was a beacon of India’s rich cultural heritage. He said that the message behind the dome was to prevent doom.Referring to the 54 bronze statues of revered scholars, saints, scientists, philosophers and gurus erected inside the world prayer hall, he expressed confidence that it will provide peace, inspiration and solace to millions of visitors from India and abroad.Appreciating MIT World Peace University for exposing students to modern science along with ancient values and spiritual wisdom, he recalled that India had a long tradition of Gurukul education where Vedas and sciences, ancient values of brotherhood, humanity love, discipline and mutual respect were seamlessly woven into the curriculum.Observing that India had enough of copying the western education model, he called for a revamp of the present education system.
He also stressed the need to make the education system relevant to the job market. However, he pointed that education was not meant only for employment but also for enhancement of knowledge, empowerment and enlightenment.Paying tributes to Mahatma Gandhi on his birth anniversary today, he said that the dome was a true endorsement of the Gandhian thought and a manifestation of all the good that comes out of it.He said "Mahatma Gandhi’s life and teachings are a treasure trove of wisdom to the youth of today. He was a seeker of truth and pursued discipline and spirituality all his life. Gandhiji emphasized on simplicity, kindness, truth, and non-violence as his life’s mantras. He always taught that ethics and morals should be the foundations of one’s life. His teachings transcend the boundaries of time and space and have acted as the moral compass that has been guiding India’s journey towards progress, for decades.”Referring to Swacchta initiative of the government of India, he said he was confident that the country will achieve cleanliness by 2022 with the participation of every citizen.The Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Shri Devendra Phadnavis, Eminent Scientist, Dr. Raghunath A. Mashelkar, the Chancellor of Nalanda University, Dr. Vijay Bhatkar, the Founder President of MIT World Peace University, Prof. Dr. V.D.Karad, the Members of Parliaments, Educationists, Scientists and Spiritual Gurus from various countries were present on the occasion.
Following is the text of Vice President's address:
" It is a Historic Occasion today that we are inaugurating one of the largest domes in the world on Mahatma Gandhiji's 150th birth anniversary. The city of Pune has a rich history and is considered as the cultural capital of Maharashtra. This dome is a monumental addition to the thoughts propagated by the great Saints of Maharashtra.I have been told that this enormous structure has a diameter of 160 feet with only 24 pillars as the foundation. The dome also houses a library and a prayer hall, with 54 bronze statues of revered scholars, saints, scientists, philosophers and gurus. The library covers an unbelievable expanse of 62,500 sq. ft. and is a testament to the knowledge and wisdom that India as a country holds and disseminates.Monuments do not earn their greatness by their design and structure alone, it is the vision behind its creation that matters. This dome is not just a structure made of bricks and cement, it is a beacon of India’s rich cultural heritage and the harbinger of light to the lives of many who look to it for solace and peace. I am confident that it will inspire and attract millions of people from all over the world, taking India to new heights of spirituality and humanism.I am aware of the various social initiatives undertaken by Dr. Vishwanath Karad in Pune, Alandi and Latur, and I must say this dome in all its grandeur is a true reflection of the vision he held for posterity and his mission in life. MIT has played a pivotal role in the private education sector of Maharashtra and it is the uniqueness of Dr. Karad’s vision which separates it from other similar institutions.I am pleased to know that Dr. Vishwanath Karad’s legacy rests safely in the able hands of Shri. Rahul Karad, whose dynamism has led to the conception of various social initiatives which aim to integrate youth in the process of nation building.
For centuries, India has been a centre of learning and an apostle of peace and MIT WPU has been established on this philosophy. It is focused on being the change that is needed in the world today by sensitizing and understanding the human dimensions of conflict, and developing a toolbox of transferable skills such as negotiation, peace building, technology and management which enable graduates from various diverse programs to succeed in peace building.MIT World Peace University has always functioned keeping the ideals of Swami Vivekananda in mind, focusing on the union of science and spirituality. They have presented in front of the world the inimitable Indian model of education, which is an amalgamation of modern science and ancient spiritual wisdom. It is something innate and inherent to India which has had a long tradition of Gurukul education. In the Gurukul, along with teaching Vedas and sciences, ancient values of brotherhood, humanity, love, discipline and mutual respect were seamlessly woven into the curriculum. They were truly comprehensive learning environments where intellectual development, personality development and spiritual development occurred.I am told that MIT not only seeks to expose students to infinite possibilities of modern science, but ensures that their feet are planted firmly in ancient values and wisdom which are of timeless utility.
The whole nation would be celebrating the 150th Birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi Ji. He is the father of our nation, and like an ideal father, like the perfect head of the family, he has guided all of us to lead truthful, ethical and honorable lives. His contribution to the nation and his greatness will light the path of our lives for thousands of years to come. This dome is a true endorsement of the Gandhian thought and a manifestation of all the good that comes out of it.Gandhi ji led from the front and led by example. His moral courage and honesty was so blemish-free, it gave him the strength and the confidence to proclaim with utmost conviction that his life was his message. Mahatma Gandhi’s life and teachings are a treasure trove of wisdom to the youth of today. He was a seeker of truth and pursued discipline and spirituality all his life. Gandhiji emphasized on simplicity, kindness, truth, and non-violence as his life’s mantras. He always taught that ethics and morals should be the foundations of one’s life. His teachings transcend the boundaries of time and space and have acted as the moral compass that has been guiding India’s journey towards progress, for decades.His clarion call for Swacchta moves the nation to this day.
The initiative of Swachha Bharat was launched on this very day by the Government of India. Each year we are moving one step closer to Gandhiji’s dream of a Swachha Bharat and I am confident that if every citizen believes in Gandhiji’s dream, we will achieve it by 2022.MIT should be able to produce not one but thousands of leaders who are honest, courageous, creative and devoted, with unquestionable integrity and unwavering commitment to the cause of nation building.I am happy to note that the World Parliament of Science, Religion and Philosophy would have unique sessions on various thought provoking topics where many eminent people from all walks of life would participate and share their knowledge and experiences. I wish success to this parliament and I have full faith that it will achieve its objectives.On one hand, the world is moving forward at a very fast pace, but on other hand it is also experiencing chaos, confusion, bloodshed and discrimination. The solution to this chaos lies within the thought of this dome where ideals of all the religions reside together. All religions preach love. This one understanding is sufficient to bring about world peace and brotherhood.India has always been welcoming all religions, cultures and traditions. In its diversity, lies India’s strength. This mutual respect and peaceful coexistence is the hallmark of Indian ethos. I pray that this dome, which symbolizes harmony and peace is able to inspire a sense of unity and humanity in every single person who enters its premises.I would like to congratulate Dr. Vishwanath Karad and Shri Rahul Karad for creating this epitome of architectural magnificence. The monument is sure to become a global marvel.My best wishes are with the whole MIT Family for all their future endeavors.