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New Delhi : President Pranab Mukherjee said that innovation was the currency of the future and emphasized on the need for creating strong innovation culture in India.

“Innovation is the currency of the future. Innovation converts research into wealth. Unless we recognize this reality and start working in a focused manner on creating a strong innovation culture in our country now, we will be left behind in the march to modernity,” Mukherjee said addressing the Visitor’s Conference at Rashtrapati Bhavan.


The first three-day Visitor’s Conference commenced on Wednesday with an interactive session between industry and academia, exchange of 44 MoUs and lectures by eminent people.

Speaking after witnessing the exchange of MoUs, Mukherjee said his constant refrain that India cannot aspire to be a world power without having a single world-class university has found resonance among the institutions.

He said the institutions have now started looking at the international ranking processes in a more proactive and systematic manner.

“If we provide enough funds to top 10 to 15 institutions for the next 4-5 years, these institutions will certainly storm into the top 100 of global academic rankings within next few years,” he said.

The president said the National Institutional Rankings Framework put in place by the human resource development ministry with an India-centric approach would further help the institutions to compete nationally and globally.

“Apart from giving the nation, the institutions, its students and its alumni a sense of pride, a high rank can help attract quality faculty and meritorious students, open fresh avenues of growth and placement for students, and provide a benchmark for continuous improvement in standards,” he said.

The president said brilliant minds, captains of industry and academic leaders of 114 central institutions have come together on a common platform to deliberate on issues concerning the higher education sector for the first time here.

Mukherjee said a strong inter-linkage between industry and academia was a critical component for developing the educational and industrial eco-systems.


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Tokyo Olympics 2020 Indian wrestler Ravi Kumar enter semi finals.

Indian wrestler Ravi Kumar (57kg) and Deepak Punia (86kg) enjoyed fruitful outings at the Tokyo Olympic Games as they secured semifinal berths in their respective weight categories at the Makuhari Messe on Wednesday.

On the opening day of the wrestling competition, Ravi Kumar defeated Bulgaria's Georgi Vangelov 14-4 on technical superiority to reach the last-four in the men's 57kg category, while compatriot Deepak Punia overcame China's Zushen Lin 6-3 on points to advance to the semifinals.

Ravi Kumar will take on Nurislam Sanayev of Kazakhstan in the last-four, while Punia will be up against David Morris Taylor of the USA.

Earlier, Ravi Kumar had won his opening-round bout by technical superiority against Colombia's Oscar Tigreros to secure a quarterfinal spot. Competing in the Round-of-16 bout against the Colombian wrestler, the 23-year-old Ravi Kumar, who is making his Olympic debut, showed no nerves as he dominated the bout to win by technical superiority (13-2).

Ravi Kumar landed attack after attack and went 13-2 up, winning the bout by technical superiority with minutes to spare. In wrestling, building up a 10-point lead over the opponent results in a victory by technical superiority.

India's 86kg freestyle wrestler Deepak Punia showed no signs of the niggle that had forced him to pull out of the Poland Open Ranking Series in Warsaw in June, as he defeated Nigeria's Ekerekeme Agiomor on technical superiority to secure a quarterfinal berth.

He got his Olympic campaign to a fine start as he was in control from the start of the bout and hardly ever allowed his Nigerian opponent any room to maneuver his moves, finally winning with a 12-1 on technical superiority.

Punia, who had also suffered an elbow injury just before the Games, was slow at the start but came into his own as the bout progressed, inflicting takedowns at regular intervals to earn points.

The Indian wrestler eased into a 4-1 lead at the break and extended his lead comfortably in the second period.

Punia, the silver medallist from the 2019 world wrestling championships, then set up a clash with China's Lin Zushen in the quarterfinals and defeated him 6-3.

(IANS/HP)