MANDI, : Indian Institute of Technology Mandi kick started the Yuva Sangam
program with a flag off event on 12 th May 2023. As a part of the event, 45 student delegates
from Himachal Pradesh and Ladakh started their journey from IIT Mandi to IIT Goa. Padmashri
Nek Ram Sharma and Ms. Nivedita Negi, Additional Deputy Commissioner, Mandi, attended the
event as the chief guests.
Keeping up with the Government of India’s initiative to create awareness and increase
production and consumption of millets, the student delegates interacted with Padma Shri Nek
Ram Sharma from Himachal Pradesh, in the first session of second phase of Yuva Sangam
Padma Shri Nek Ram Sharma is well renowned for popularizing and promoting indigenous and
organic mode of agriculture.
Aligning with the UN declaration of 'International Year of Millets 2023' the focus of his discussion
with the students was on growth of indigenous food grains in the Himalayan region which has
been an integral part of the diet of the people for centuries.
Interacting with the students, Padmashri Nek Ram Sharma, said, “Depleting nutrient value
of food, less fiber intake and fast-food culture is deteriorating our health. Millets are very
nutritious, environment friendly and sustainable. The youth of today must strive to know more
about natural farming and introduce millets to the diet."
The idea of Ek Bharat Shrestha Bharat is conceptualized by the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India
to bridge the cultural differences and create a cultural connect between the different states of
India. It also aims at exposing the youth to our cultural values, and value the cultural diversity
our country has to offer.
During the flag off ceremony, Ms. Nivedita Negi, Additional Deputy Commissioner, Mandi,
said, “This initiative by the Government of India is to introduce our youth to the cultural diversity
of our country and this is a unique opportunity for them to learn more about our culture,
technology, tourism, etc. in this fully funded trip by IIT Mandi.”
Addressing the gathering, Prof. Laxmidhar Behera, Director, IIT Mandi, said, "IIT Mandi
has started the initiative of Sustainable development by empowering sustainable agriculture.
The Institute is working towards creating entrepreneurs in agriculture by making farming
beneficial using traditional methods like organic farming and climate control agriculture. IIT
Mandi is acting as the Nodal Institute for this Yuva Sangam program and is funding the trip of 45
student delegates from HP and Ladakh for their academic and cultural tour."
The student delegates from Himachal Pradesh and Ladakh started their tour to IIT Goa on 12 th
May 2023. The student delegates from Goa will reach IIT Mandi campus on 17 th May 2023 and
will return on 23 rd May 2023.
During their visit, the student delegates will get a chance to experience a completely different
culture of their country. This will include:
- 18 th May 2023 - Visit to different state-of-the-art research facilities at IIT Mandi
- 19 th May 2023 – Visit to Rewalsar Town
- 20 th May 2023 – Visit to Atal Tunnel and Manali
- 21 th May 2023 – Visit to the Larji Dam and Mandi Town
- 22 st May 2023 – Visit to Villages, Salgi, Nandli and connect with local people
Yuva Sangam is a cultural and academic exchange program that has been initiated for students
for the age group between 18 to 30. It gives exposure tours to the youths comprising mainly
students studying in Higher Educational institutions (HEIs) and some off-campus youths from
one state to other states and vice versa. This program is supported by many Ministries including
Education, Tourism, Youth Affairs, Tourism and Railways. During the student delegates’ visit to
IIT Mandi, the Institute will arrange interactions for them with various dignitaries of the
state. During their visit, the student delegates will experience the academically stimulating
environment of IIT Mandi and the rich culture and magnificent landscape of Himachal Pradesh.
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