The Hindu : Opinion / Interview : Vision for a new Nalanda
Ever since I saw Nalanda for the first time as a child, I was completely bowled over by the vision it offered to humanity. I dreamt of bringing the great institution back to life, some day. As I continued to visit Nalanda through my teenage years, the idea of an outstanding centre for higher education at the great centre of ancient Indian civilisation, in Bihar, gripped me more and more. When Chief Minister Nitish Kumar approached me about helping them build a new institution near the old site, I was impressed to see how close his own vision was to what I had hoped would happen one day. I hope to see that dream being realised — at least the initial stages of it — before long. The fact that Bihar also has a lot of economic problems, including persistent poverty, makes it even more necessary for the new Nalanda to offer educational opportunities for the useful arts (such as information technology, environmental studies and management), without undermining the more abstract investigations.