MANGALDAI: "The people of Darrang district are fortunate enough to have an excellent and exceptional university –Assam Skill University- the third of its kind in the country and the only in the eastern India at Mangaldai. It is a state-of-the art technological institution for the younger generations, not only of Assam, but also of the entire country, which will accommodate 10,000 students, including from foreign countries. Mangaldai will surely find its location in the global map of skill development," said Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal while laying the foundation of the proposed Assam Skill University at No. 4 Gerimari adjacent to Mangaldai College on Monday afternoon.
Chief Minister Sonowal, in presence of Minister for Skill, Employment and Entrepreneurship Development (SEED), Chandra Mohan Partowary, parliamentarian Dilip Saikia, legislators Guru Jyoti Das and Binanda Saikia, Principal Secretary of SEED, Dr. KK Dwibedi, and Chief Executive Officer of Assam Skill University project, Anand Prakash Tiwari laid the foundation stone at a function attended by an unprecedented and august gathering of more than 15,000 people coming from far-flung areas of the district.
"We have high hopes on our own people and the BJP government till date has not done a single anti-people activity for which the people, irrespective of their caste, religion and creed, have been showering their blessings on us. I earnestly appeal to parents and guardians to take utmost care in shaping and moulding their children at the primary level so that the young generation can avail the chance and opportunity to make their future through this university, otherwise it will remain as a normal university only," said Chief Minister Sonowal. He also came down heavily on the previous Congress government for the collapse and devastation of the administration and the government during their tenure. "The Congress government was without honesty, morality and vision and had indulged in corruption and nepotism for their individual benefit and comfort. But the BJP government, with the whole-hearted support of the people of the State, has been successful in restoration of good governance with a tough stand against all corruption. Our vision is to make every citizen a smart citizen," said Sonowal.
First time in eastern India the Assam Skill University, at the estimated cost of 140 million US dollar (approx Rs. 1,000 crore) has been initiated at Mangaldai with the fund secured from Asian Development Bank in the ratio of 80:20, of which 20 per cent will come from the Assam Government. This mega project is scheduled to be completed by the month of September, 2026 at a spacious plot of land measuring 250 bighas (83 acres) which will have advance features like effluent treatment plant, rainwater harvesting, energy conversation through solar energy resulting to an overall green campus and nature-friendly environment for the proposed university.
The proposed university, of which the Chief Minister of Assam is likely to be the Chancellor, will provide skill education to the younger generation of the country with a specific focus on Assam and the Northeast with the objective to strengthen industry-aligned and flexible skill education and training by developing management and operating systems, faculty development and management systems, developing environmentally sustainable and climate resilient campus and facilities. Other salient objectives are also designing and delivering industry, flexible skills education and training programs, strengthening engagement in industry-relevant applied research and development, enhancement of international and regional cooperation in skills education and training.
The Assam Skill University will focus on 12 different departments, namely Engineering, Management and Entrepreneurship, Agriculture and Forestry, Digital Technology, Textiles, Media, Entertainment and Communications, Logistic and Transport, Tourism, Hospitality and Wellness, Development of TVET Practitioners, Retail, Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals and Distance & Lifelong Learning. Based on the UGC guidelines and taking guidance from Assam Skill University Act passed in the State Assembly in September 2020, appointment of key officials, including the Vice-Chancellor, Registrar and other administrative staff and tendering process for civil works have also been initiated according to the ADB guidelines. The proposed university will not only offer specialized short-term training and diploma, but will also offer advanced diploma, B Voc, M Voc and research level vocational courses and will build the capacity of the entire Eastern region in the TVET sector. The proposed university will be a landmark achievement, not only to create an opportunity for the youngsters of the State in reaching their true potential, but to also play a pivotal role in creating skilled manpower for the development of the State and the nation.
In his welcome address, Principal Secretary of SEED, Dr. KK Dwibedi said that the State Government has been exploring partnership arrangements with countries like Singapore, Germany, Taiwan, South Korea, Israel, Australia, Japan and UK for providing sector specific expertise to this university.
SEED Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary, parliamentarian Dilip Saikia, legislators Guru Jyoti Das and Binanda Saikia also addressed the foundation-laying function while Deputy Commissioner Dilip Kumar Borah offered the vote of thanks.