The Kashmir University (KU) is grabbing headlines these days. The University has been chosen as one of the destinations in the country where Youth20 and Civil20 events are being held in connection with India’s G20 Presidency. The University authorities, faculty and students have all good reasons to cheer about this news. According to KU officials, the University of Kashmir has been chosen among 15 institutions in the country for Youth 20 events which are nationally very important. India has assumed G20 Presidency for the year 2023 and is holding many big events especially in selected universities.
According to Vice Chancellor of Kashmir University, Prof Neelofer Khan, the Kashmir University’s leadership for events like Y20 and C20, which are a part of the country's G20 Presidency, is “an important milestone in the journey of the University to contribute towards advancing the national aspirations, policies and programmes”.
“It is one of the important mandates of the University to position its programmes and policies in sync with the present and future needs of the society, and our association with G20 events is a giant leap in that direction,” she said in an exclusive chat with Greater Kashmir on Sunday.
Prof Nilofer Khan said that during the country's G20 Presidency, 17 important Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been identified for attainment and in this regard, the University of Kashmir is “responding to the clarion call of our Honourable Prime Minister to engage students and youth to help advance the country's G20 goals.”
“Our Honourable Chancellor has also directed for holding various events and competitions in Universities to raise awareness on the 17 SDGs,” she said.
As per a press release issued by Kashmir University on Saturday, the two-day Civil 20 or C20 event is being held at Gandhi Bhawan on February 13-14. C20 is an Official Engagement Group of G20 providing a platform for Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), Non-Governmental Organisations and Government representatives to engage important stakeholders for discussion on selected themes. The theme for KU’s Working Group Meeting on ‘Gender Equality and Disability’ is ‘Women’s Safety’ and ‘Engaging Men and Boys.’
“The C20 Working Group Meeting being hosted by the University on February 13-14 focuses on Gender Equality and Disability to understand the gender concerns and needs of specially-abled women from underprivileged and marginalised sections of society and formulate Policy White Papers in this regard,” the Vice Chancellor said.
The Kashmir University is also hosting events related to Youth-20 in May this year. “Our Youth20 event will focus on Climate Change mitigation, which has been one of the important agendas of the country's leadership in the last nearly one decade,” Prof Neelofer Khan said.
The Vice Chancellor is confident that such important national events are a great opportunity to engage with the government, civil society organisations, youth and policy planners and “contribute to nation-building, which is ultimately the goal and mandate of Universities.”
“We are confident that our association with such events will position our University as a centre of excellence at the national and international level. It is an opportunity for us to excel further and secure more such events of national importance in future,” she said.
The Vice Chancellor is not wrong for being optimistic because India’s G20 Presidency is a big event in the history of the country. The active participation of Kashmir University faculty and students in Y20 and C20 events will give them an international exposure and make the University of Kashmir excel further, as the VC of the University rightly believes.
Everyone in the society has to contribute towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The two themes chosen by the Kashmir University like Gender Disability and Climate Change are very important for discussions at the G20 forum.
The physical presence of delegates from G20 countries in such events being held at the Kashmir University campus is in itself a big thing.
The University has created the right perception in the country that the faculty and students can contribute to G20 discussions. Authorities in the Government of Jammu and Kashmir should lend full support to the Kashmir University authorities so that such events are held successfully. The VC of KU deserves full credit for making this happen. She is right in calling it an “important milestone.”