Introduction Knowledge Systems: Concepts and Applications – book launched

Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, Union Minister of Education and Skill Development today launched a textbook on “Introduction to Indian Knowledge Systems: Concepts and Applications”. Shri Subhas Sarkar, Minister of State for Education along with Shri K Sanjay Murthy, Secretary Higher Education, Shri A.D Sahasrabudhe, AICTE Chairman, and representatives from AICTE, IKS Division, and Ministry of Education attended the program.

Shri Dharmendra Pradhan expressed his happiness that the authors have given an academic framework to the Indian Knowledge System in this book. Shri Pradhan spoke about the global footprint of Indian knowledge, culture, philosophy, and spirituality. He spoke about the ancient Indian civilization and how it has positively impacted the world. Speaking about Vedas, Upanishads, and other Indian texts, he said that our ancient heritage is full of treasures that need to be preserved, documented, and propagated. He also spoke about various examples of science-based practices and knowledge from ancient India which we can find relevant still in the modern world.

The Minister said that the Indian education system is being decolonized under the leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. While we adopt the good things from our ancient past, we must also be mindful of the problems in our society and build a future that creates synergy between knowledge from the past and contemporary issues. Solutions to many of the world’s problems lie in the Indian Knowledge System, he added.

This book seeks to fill the gap in offering a required course on IKS, recently mandated by AICTE. Moreover, the New Education Policy (NEP) has also provided a clear trajectory for imparting IKS in the higher education curriculum, necessitating a book of this kind in several higher education institutions in the country in the days to come. Although the book has been primarily developed for use by the Engineering institutions, the structure, and the contents lend themselves easily to addressing the requirement in other University systems (Liberal Arts, Medicine, Science, and Management) for such a book. The newly released IKS textbook will enable the students to bridge the divide between traditional and modern education systems by providing students with an opportunity to reconnect with the past, build a holistic scientific temper, and utilize it for carrying out multidisciplinary research and innovation.

The textbook curriculum is developed by the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore in association with VYASA Yoga Institute, Bengaluru, and Chinmaya Vishwa Vidyapeeth, Ernakulam. It is written by Prof. B Mahadevan, IIM Bangalore, and co-authored by Assoc Prof. Vinayak Rajat Bhat, Chanakya University, Bengaluru, and Nagendra Pavana R N, with the school of Vedic Knowledge Systems at Chinmaya Vishwa Vidyapeeth, Ernakulam.

 Dr. Subhas Sarkar mentioned the need of learning about the traditional Indian Knowledge Systems. He cited examples from Ayurveda, construction of ships in ancient times, aircraft knowledge, the architecture of Indus Valley Cities, and political science which existed in ancient India. He appreciated the book Introduction to Indian Knowledge System which seeks to introduce the epistemology and ontology of the Indian Knowledge Systems in all domains of life, to the Engineering and Science students in a way they can relate to, appreciate and explore further. Shri Sarkar further added that for the upliftment of any individual, his/her roots must be strong, and to conserve these roots, one should know about the traditional Indian Knowledge System.

The program included a welcome address by Prof. A.D. Sahasrabudhe, Chairman, AICTE, and Author, Dr. B. Mahadevan, IIM, Bangalore among others. A vote of thanks was provided by Prof. M P Poonia, Vice Chairman, AICTE.

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