After becoming the center of controversies with its “anti-national”image, the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) is all set for a brand revamp. As part of the bid, the country’s premier varsity organised an open day — Jan Jan JNU — on Monday, wherein schoolchildren visited the campus to witness the works and research carried out in various departments.
Inaugurating the event, JNU Vice-Chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar said:”Universities should not remain ivory towers. They should connect with society. The main objective of Jan Jan JNU was precisely that.”
He further stated that another objective of the event was to showcase JNU’s contributions to society, which could serve as inspiration for the schoolchildren when they later decide on their career as future researchers, academicians or engines of social change.
Director of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi, V Ramagopal Rao, a nanotechnology expert, was also present at the event. As many as 900 students from 11 schools visited the campus. The varsity departments had also set up stalls to inform students about their achievements.
The schoolchildren got an opportunity to see a movie about the inception and development of the varsity, and were led through a range of exhibits. Thereafter, they attended three parallel sessions on Mind Mapping and Basic Introduction to Indian sign languages, animation film on Panchatantra and a documentary from the School of Languages.
Since February 9 this year, the university has been in the limelight for alleged anti-national activities in the campus, when a group of students raised some anti-India slogans. The holding of the Mahishasur Shahadat Diwas and plans for a beef and pork festival further landed the varsity in the soup. The burning of the effigy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month added the last nail to the coffin.
At present, the varsity is in news as a 27-year-old student, Najeeb Ahmed, has gone missing from the campus.