ITEC Day 2022 Celebrations at Embassy
December 13, 2022
Remarks by Ambassador Amit Narang
Ladies & Gentlemen,
Good evening, Namaskar, As Salam Walekum,
At the outset, let me welcome Her Excellency Dr Rahma bint Ibrahim Al Mahrouqiyah, Hon’ble Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation, Sultanate of Oman to the event.
We are grateful to Hon’ble Minister for taking time from her busy schedule and gracing the occasion today.
I am also delighted to welcome so many of our Omani friends who are tied to India by the loving bond of the ITEC expereince.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
In history and tradition, India was always known as one of the world’s premier knowledge hubs. Our great universities of Nalanda and Takshila, to name just a few, were global centres of excellence for centuries, attracting students and scholars from world over.
In 7th century, the great Chinese traveler Xuan Zang said this about the Nalanda University:
“Learned men from different cities who desire to quickly acquire renown in discussion, come her in multitudes to settle their doubts, and then the streams of their wisdom spread far and wide”.
Today India is known as an IT superpower and a leading light when it comes to areas such as space-technology, computers, nuclear science, automobiles, pharmacy, manufacturing, biotechnology, renewable energy etc.
The ideal of a beacon of knowledge however has continued and new India continues to lay importance to sharing knowledge and expertise for global good.
In Indian culture and tradition, acquisition and practice of knowledge is considered a noble vocation, higher than the ideals of pursuing wealth and pleasure.
More importantly though, Indian culture has traditionally emphasized that sharing of knowledge is equally important.
This thought is beautifully expressed in one of our ancient texts as:
The repository of knowledge is like no other.
It shrinks if collected, but grows when shared.
The ITEC program that we are celebrating today is a manifestation of this ancient philosophy of India, which emphasizes not just acquisition but sharing of knowledge on the same footing.
Under the ITEC programme, India shares its knowledge and know-how for capacity building of other developing countries.
It is however, not a one-way or a top-down process. It is a collaborative process in which India also gains by the sharing of knowledge and experience that this process facilitates.
ITEC programme was launched in 1964 and has now emerged as an important component of India’s development cooperation.
Since its inception more than 200,000 professionals from more than 160 countries have been benefited from it.
Today, India provides over 14,000 scholarships for short and medium term courses in more than 100 premier institutions of India.
Over the years, ITEC Programme has received a good response in the Sultanate and hundreds of Omani Officials have taken part in ITEC courses.
The ITEC programme has also contributed to encouraging people to people relationships and inter-cultural exchanges between India and Oman.
We have offered 125 slots to Oman this year and I am sure the training programs in the post-pandemic phase will prove relevant and useful for the participants.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
There is another topic that I would like to draw your attention to.
On December 1st this year India assumed the presidency of G20.
In view of the special relations between India and Oman we have invited Oman as special guest for G20.
Oman will thus have the privilege of participating in all 200 of the G-20 meetings that India will convene between now and September 2023 when this will conclude with the G-20 Summit hosted by Prime Minister Modi.
Training, Education and Skill upgradation, which are central pillars for His Majesty’s Oman Vision 2040, will remain key focus areas during India’s G20 Presidency.
Oman’s journey towards achieving the goals set under Vision 2040 is impressive.
It is our conviction that India can be a reliable partner of Oman in achieving these goals. Oman is keen to develop its human resources through education, training and vocational courses and ITEC could complement these efforts.
I urge the training departments and officials in various Ministries and establishments of Omani Government to take maximum advantage of the ITEC courses and partner with India for growth and development.
I also wish to take a moment to thank the ITEC alumni for being here with us today. We hope that the training courses that you attended in India have been useful in your professions.
More importantly, I hope the experience that you had in India will connect you as a lifelong friend of India and that you will contribute with your thoughts and efforts towards strengthening India-Oman relations.
I invite you to interact with us and your fellow ITEC alumni during this event and keep in touch even after this event.
On behalf of Embassy of India, Muscat, I once again thank the Hon’ble Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation Dr. Rahma for her kind patronage to this event and other Ministries and Organizations for their support in implementation of the ITEC Programme in Oman.
Thank you and enjoy the rest of the evening.