New Delhi: The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi has approved the Ministry of Railways’ transformative initiative to set up the first ever National Rail and Transport University (NRTU) in Vadodara to skill its human resources and build capability. This innovative idea, inspired by the Prime Minister, will be a catalyst for transformation of rail and transport sector towards New India.
The University will be set up as a Deemed to Be University under de novo category as per the UGC [Institutions Deemed to be Universities] Regulations, 2016. Government is working towards completing all approvals by April 2018 and to launch the first academic program in July 2018.
A not-for-profit Company under Section 8 of the Companies Act, 2013 will be created by the Ministry of Railways which shall be the Managing Company of the proposed university. The company will provide financial and infrastructural support to the university, and appoint Chancellor and Pro-Chancellor of the university. Board of Management, comprising professionals and academics, shall be independent of the Managing Company with full autonomy to perform its academic and administrative responsibilities.
Existing land and infrastructure at National Academy of Indian Railways (NAIR) at Vadodara, Gujarat will be utilized, and suitably modified and modernized for the purpose of the university. In its full enrolment, it is expected to have 3000 full time students. The funding of the new University/Institute is to entirely come from Ministry of Railways.
This university will set Indian Railways on the path of modernisation and help India become a global leader in transport sector by enhancing productivity and promoting ‘Make in India’. It will create a resource pool of skilled manpower and leverage state-of-the-art technology to provide better safety, speed and service in Indian Railways. It will support ‘Startup India’ and ‘Skill India’ by channeling technology and delivering knowhow, and foster entrepreneurship, generating large scale employment opportunities. This will lead to transformation of railway and transportation sector and enable faster movement of people and goods. Through global partnerships and accessing cutting edge technologies, India will emerge as a global centre of expertise.
The university plans to use latest pedagogy and technology applications (satellite based tracking, Radio Frequency Identification and Artificial Intelligence) to improve on-the-job performance and productivity. Close collaboration with the Indian Railways will ensure that the stakeholders have access to Railways’ facilities, which will work as ‘live labs’ and they will be able to work on solving real life problems. It will have ‘Centres of Excellence’ showcasing high-end, niche technology like High Speed Train.
Background: Government of India has taken a very important decision whose impact will be felt through the next century and the decision is that country’s first railway university will be constructed in Vadodara” – Hon’ble Prime Minister speaking about rail university in Vadodara in October, 2016.
As Indian Railways is set to embark on ambitious projects such as High Speed Trains (popularly known as bullet train), massive infrastructure modernisation, Dedicated Freight Corridors (DFCs), highest focus on safety etc., Indian Railways will require high level of proficiency and skills. Further, factors such as unprecedented growth in the transportation sector in India, increased requirement of qualified manpower and upgradation of skills and capability required to drive the transformation of Indian Railways have necessitated a world-class training hub.