Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Bihar on Wednesday, June 19, to inaugurate the new Nalanda University campus near Rajgir’s ancient university ruins. The campus is named after the ancient university, which attracted scholars from around the world about 1,600 years ago.

External affairs minister S Jaishankar and ambassadors from 17 partner countries also attended the event, according to officials.

Terming the occasion “historic”, the university’s interim vice-chancellor professor Abhay Kumar Singh said. “We consider the visit of the Prime Minister a very prestigious and auspicious occasion. The Prime Minister has made the occasion special because he is bringing the diplomats of East Asia Summit countries. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar is also coming. This celebratory spirit will give Nalanda a boost.”

Modi visited ancient Nalanda, which was announced as a UN heritage site in 2016, around 9.45am and inaugurated the campuses around 10.30 am. He will also give a speech, according to a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).

Abhay Kumar Singh said Modi’s visit would make the university, where students from 26 countries are studying, more popular globally.

Bihar governor Rajendra Vishwanath Arlekar and chief minister Nitish Kumar joined the Prime Minister.

The university moved to its new campus in 2020, which combines traditional and modern architecture. The 455-acre campus includes a Net Zero area with 100 acres of water bodies.

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