Thursday, November 11, 2010

U.K. minister for universities and science visits India

U.K. Minister for Universities and Science, David Willetts has arrived in Delhi today for a week long visit to the capital, to Bangalore and to Pune. The Minister returns to India soon after his visit in July 2010 when he played a central role in helping to forge the new U.K.-India enhanced partnership under the joint leadership of Prime Ministers Singh and Cameron.

Minister Willetts’ early return is an opportunity to renew contact with Indian counterparts in order to maintain the momentum of the July visit. It underlines the U.K.’s strong commitment to deepen its partnership with India in the essential areas of education, science and research.

While in Delhi, the Minister will meet the Union Ministers and key officials at the Ministries of Human Resource and Development, Agriculture and Science and Technology. He will deliver a key-note speech during the inaugural session at the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) Higher Education Summit. Mr. Willetts has been invited to be the joint guest of honour to launch National Education Day and will co-chair the U.K.-India Education Forum. He will also meet members of the Planning Commission and visit the Industrial Training Institute (ITI) in Gurgaon. In Bangalore, among other activities, Mr. Willetts will visit the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). In Pune, Mr. Willetts will meet leading industrialists and visit the Indian Institute of Science, Education and Research (IISER), the National Chemical Laboratory (NCL) and the Venture Centre.

Commenting on this important visit, Mr Willetts said: "Our Prime Ministers have put education at the top of our shared agenda. Collaboration in education between the U.K. and India goes back over many years, but is also constantly changing and innovating. India and the U.K. have a strong track record of collaborating in science and research. In the last year U.K. bodies have committed over £30 million (Rs. 2 billion) to jointly-funded research programmes. The challenges that our two societies face are increasingly global in nature and solutions will increasingly be found by working together."

Source: British High Commission, New Delhi, November 11, 2010
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