Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan has called for progressive qualitative transformation in the State’s higher education to limit the flow of students to other States and countries and reap the benefits of the country’s projected demographic dividend.
“Given Kerala’s high intellectual and technological potential, it is achievable through dedicated, focussed efforts,” he said while leading the State’s Republic Day celebrations at the Central Stadium, in Thiruvananthapuram on January 26.
Mr. Khan hoisted the National Flag and received salute at the ceremonial parade that was attended by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and other dignitaries.
Crediting the State government for addressing key areas such as agriculture, environment, housing, health care and education by further its vision of a ‘ Navakeralam’ (New Kerala), the Governor said the completion of over 3.2 lakh houses under the LIFE Mission has added strength to India’s dream of providing houses to over one crore beneficiaries through various schemes including the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana.
The State also drew inspiration from the country’s rise as the third largest start-up ecosystem in the world to be recognised as Asia’s leading performer in the Global Start Up Ecosystem Report 2022.
“The NITI Aayog Baseline Report about Kerala recording the lowest multi-dimensional poverty in the country, the third position in terms of employability of the youth as per India Skills Report 2022 and the appreciation received for Innovation Index and social security measures acknowledge the good performance of the State,” he pointed out.
He also added the State’s top position in the latest Performance Grading Index (PGI) of the Union Ministry of Education, the progress in the attainment of Sustainable Development Goals and the effective management of decentralised planning have also been widely appreciated.
The Governor also lauded the economic reforms undertaken by the Central government. Guided by the spirit of ‘Atmanirbharta’, such efforts led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi enabled the country to confidently tide over the COVID-19 pandemic by ramping up health infrastructure, producing medicines and vaccines.
The opening up of the Space sector to the private sphere has also shown encouraging results. “As Vikram-S, the sounding rocket developed by the Indian start up Skyroot Aerospace, took off, we saw our youths proclaiming that the sky was no longer the limit. Indian Space Research Organisation, which provided this encouragement, had also carried out many missions including PSLV-C-54, GSAT-24 and GSLV-MkIII OneWeb.”
The parade was led by its commander, Major Anand C.S. of the Indian Army, and second-in-command, Squadron Leader Pradeep Kumar Sharma of the Indian Air Force.
Contingents of the 11 th Battalion of Madras Regiment, Indian Air Force, Railway Protection Force platoon, Karnataka Police, Malabar Special Police, Special Armed Police, Kerala Armed Women Police Battalion, India Reserve Battalion contingent, Thiruvananthapuram City Police, Kerala Prisons and Correctional Services, Kerala Excise, Kerala Fire and Rescue Services, Forest Department, National Cadet Corps (NCC) Senior Division (Boys), NCC Senior Wing (Girls), NCC Senior Division Air Squadron, NCC Naval Unit, Student Police Cadet (SPC) Boys, SPC Girls, Bharat Scouts, Bharat Guides, Mounted Police, Brass Bands of Thiruvananthapuram City Armed Police, Malabar Special Police, and Kerala Armed Police Battalions I, III and IV; and the Pipe Bands of KAP Battalion II, V, and 11 th Battalion of Madras Regiment participated in the ceremonial parade.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Ministers Antony Raju, V. Sivankutty, G. R. Anil, Chief Secretary V. P. Joy and Thiruvananthapuram Mayor Arya Rajendran were among those who participated.