Union HRD minister Ramesh Pokhriyal (File photo)
NEW DELHI: HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal on Friday said the coronavirus crisis and the lockdown had affected all facets of life, including dispensation of justice, and called for presenting a united front to face the unprecedented challenge.
Inaugurating a webinar on “Covid-19: Constitutional and Legal Conundrums,” organised by Bennett University, the minister said, “We are facing an unprecedented crisis where each society is affected. This is the time to remain united and one another with great fortitude in these challenging times.”
He highlighted the challenges faced by the judiciary due to the Covid-19 crisis which obstructed its functioning. Courts could not hold normal hearings during the lockdown period and had to go for virtual proceedings even as cases, related to the pandemic-induced problems, cropped up.
The minister hailed Times Group Managing Director Vineet Jain for taking up the initiative to get legal luminaries together to discuss constitutional and legal issues thrown up by the Covid-19 pandemic and how to ensure good governance in these times.
“Bennett University has emerged as a university of international repute, offering a wide range of programmes at undergraduate, postgraduate and PhD levels across disciplines like engineering, media, law etc. This will augur well for the students here for all round development and future leaders,” said Pokhriyal.
The minister spoke of the slew of measures taken by the government, including those taken to ensure that every student continues to remain on the path of learning. “Many students faced issues of accessibility due to lack of digital platforms. The government has launched the e-VIDYA programme. To reach each student with quality content the government has respondent with ‘One Channel One Classroom’ initiative. Programmes like the GIAN platform for teachers and e-learning portals like DIKSHA and Swayam are ingenious strokes in this hour of need and will definitely remove hurdles in education,” he said.
He said the ministry has launched several projects to promote research and development in higher education like STARS (Scheme for Transformational and Advanced Research in the Sciences), IMPRESS (Impactful Policy Research in Social Science), IMPRINT (Impacting Research Innovation and Technology), SPARC (Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration) and STRIDE (Scheme for Trans-Disciplinary Research for India’s Developing Economy).