Monday, December 31, 2012

Friends, Happy New Year 2013 !!

Designs sought for Nalanda University master plan !!

 Nalanda University has launched a design competition for foreign architects for the master plan of the varsity's campus and facilities in Bihar.

A statement released by the Consulate General of India yesterday said that the Architectural Design Competition is open to foreign architects and architectural firms registered with the Council of Architectural firms in India.

"Joint ventures between the Indian architects/ architectural firms with foreign architects/ architectural firms can also participate. Successful applicants will be prequalified to participate in a single stage design competition," said the statement.
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CM Nitish Seeks Inclusion of Nalanda Sites in UNESCO List

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today made a strong demand to include Nalanda historical sites in the UNESCO heritage list as had been done for Bodh Gaya.

He demanded the Centre make an earnest effort for inclusion of Nalanda sites in UNESCO list.

"As we are putting sincere efforts for Nalanda University, similar hard work is needed for winning UNESCO status for Nalanda historical sites," Kumar said while addressing a function on release of a book by former chief minister and JD(U) leader Jagannath Mishra here.

Kumar said the UNESCO tag attracts more tourists, particularly foreigners, to a site.

He said the number of foreign tourists visiting Bihar was expected to rise to 10 lakh in 2012 which signals that the state has emerged as a choice of tourists from outside the country.

He said more foreign tourists were coming now to Bihar than Goa. "If we manage to increase 3-4 more international level sites, this number can multiply."

The chief minister also asked the Centre to assist the state in excavation of historical sites of Vaishali, Chirand in Chhapra and Vikramshila in Bhagalpur district to convert them into international level tourist spots.
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Global design competition for Nalanda University !!

Nalanda Global University has launched the much-awaited architectural design competition. It is open to both Indian and foreign firms. The design competition is the first important step towards deciding the masterplan of the varsity. Nalanda University VC Gopa Sabharwal told
HT, that the last day for applying for the design competition is January 8. An expert committee headed by the university advisor, AR Ramanathan, who has had the experience of working for the National Gallery and other big projects, would announce the list on January 22.

“As per the norms of the council of architecture, only those foreign firms can apply, which have a joint venture with an Indian firm,” said Sabharwal, adding that the idea is to have a cutting edge architecture for the university even while keeping its legacy intact.

“The history of Nalanda is central to the design of the university. The competition focuses on the culture of the region, without losing out on any of the modern principles of social and environmental awareness. It has to be an environment-friendly campus. It will produce as much energy as it will consume,” said Sabharwal.

The vice chancellor said, expression of interest (EoI) has been invited from all the eligible architects and architectural firms. “Once the design is finalised, real activity will start on site,” she added.

The next board meeting of the Nalanda University is scheduled in Patna on February 4, next year. The chancellor of the university, Dr Amartya Sen and all other board members will attend the meeting, said the VC.

The next day, the Nalanda monitoring committee, headed by planning commission deputy chairman, Montek Singh Ahluwalia, will meet in Rajgir to review the progress. Before that, a number of dignitaries from Buddhist countries are also expected to be in Patna to attend the international Buddhist conclave.

Chief minister Nitish Kumar has been keen to start at least some course in Nalanda University from 2014. During the last board meeting, Dr Amartya Sen had also exuded optimism, that the first batch of 100 students in two schools - School of Historical Sciences and the School of Environment and Ecology - could start in 2014.

“We are also working hard to make it happen. Hopefully, the construction work will begin in 2013. Before starting the university, even on a limited scale, we will need some infrastructure and accommodation,” she added.
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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Proposed Departments and Schools of Nalanda University

 At initial phase of of Nalanda university, These would be major departments:-

  •     School of Historical Studies
  •     School of Environment and Ecological Studies
  •     School of Buddhist Studies, Philosophy and Comparative Religion
  •     School of Languages and Literature
  •     School of International Religion and Peace Studies
  •     School of Information Sciences and Technology
  •     School of Business Management (Public Policy and Development Studies)
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High Level Meet on the Future of Nalanda International University !!

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar in Patna on Thursday welcomed the core committee of the proposed Nalanda International Committee and held talks on a host of issues and controversies that has besieged the plan causing inordinate delay in its implementation.

Following the announcement of the appointment of Nobel Prize winner Dr. Amartya Sen as the first Vice Chancellor of the proposed university, the Chief Minister hosted a luncheon for Dr. Sen, former Foreign Minister of Singapore George Yo, Lord Meghnad Desai, Prof. Tansen Sen, Dr. Gopa Sabarwal, Member of the Parliament N. K. Singh, Prof. Sugata Bose, Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi, Education Minister P. K. Shahi, and other dignitaries at his residence on Anie Marg.

During the meeting that lasted nearly six hours, it was decided that the university will become fully functional from 2014 and the selection for the appointment of teachers would begin from July 2013.

Later talking to the reporters, Dr. Sen said that initially the School of Historical Studies and the School of Ecology and Environmental Studies would start operating. Each school will have up to 100 students and 13 highly-qualified teachers whose pay scale would be comparable to those teaching under SARC guidelines, he said.

Construction for the university campus would begin in 2013.

Kumar told the committee to ensure the university also offered courses in economics and basic science.

The visitors later had dinner hosted by ADRI Secretary Shaibal Gupta at his residence.
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Monday, December 3, 2012

Now, Bihar 7th on list of tourist arrivals !!

Bihar ranked seventh among 10 states of the country in receiving the highest number of foreign tourists last year. The states ahead of it in the list include Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and West Bengal. Buddhist sites like the Mahabodhi temple at Bodh
Gaya, the ruins of ancient Nalanda University and the Stupa at Vaishali, which yielded Lord Buddha’s relic, have remained hot favourites among tourists, particuarly from the Buddhist countries.

Besides, the recently launched cruise tourism in river Ganga, too, has also attracted a number of foreign tourists from Germany, UK and France.

Enthused by the trend, tourism minister Sunil Kumar Pintu said, “Take a look at the footfall of foreign tourists in the state. A ministry of tourism report says, one out of six foreign tourists is heading towards Bihar to visit our historical sites. It also says, that the state received more holidayers from abroad than Goa, which is considered the hotspot among foreigners due to its beaches.”

The minister said, that the number of foreign tourists in the state was expected to cross 10 lakh this year. “More than 8.4 lakh foreign tourists have already visited different historical sites of the state between January and August this year and more are expected in the coming tourism season, which will start from October. In 2011, the total number of international tourists coming here was pitched at 8.78 lakh.” he added.

Pintu said, the latest report showed a more than ten-fold increase in the number of foreign tourists in the last one decade. “Not just that. We have started taking steps to attract more foreign as well domestic tourists. A road show on Bihar tourism was conducted during an international meet at Mauritius last month. And, we have also participated in the ongoing four-day world travel market (WTM), 2012, in London,” he said. Pintu said, out of nine pavilions booked by India tourism, one has been allotted to Bihar tourism to showcase its rich historical background for the benefit of foreigners.
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India committed to boosting BIMSTEC connectivity: PM

Making a strong pitch for enhanced regional connectivity, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday that India was committed to worki...