Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Saturday here stressed on the need to impart skills and world class education to the youth for a faster economic growth of the country.
"To fulfil the demands of our fast growing economy, we have to make our youths educated and skilled. The hard fact is that without proper skilled manpower, we cannot sustain the fast pace of economic growth for long," Singh said in Malda district, over 300 km from West Bengal's capital Kolkata.
The prime minister was speaking at the foundation laying ceremony of the Ghani Khan Choudhury Institute of Engineering and Technology in Narayanpur in Malda district.
Singh said the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government understood the demands of the people well and had laid special stress on the education sector.
"We have increased government expenditure to four percent of GDP from 3.3 percent of GDP. In higher education we have set up a large number of engineering institutes, including 16 central universities, seven Indian Institute of Management, eight Indian Institute of Technology, 10 National Institutes of Technology and five Indian Institute of Science, Education and Research."
He said the central government has started the National Skill Development programme which aims to make 52 crore people skilled by the end of the 12th five-year plan.
"In higher education, we are laying greater focus on quality. We want the youths not only to make full use of the scope of the higher education, but also to get world class education. We want our scientists and engineers to acquire worldwide fame," the prime minister said.
The Ghani Khan Choudhury Institute of Engineering and Technology (GKCIET) is named after late Congress leader and union minister A.B.A. Ghani Khan Choudhury, who is often called the architect of Malda for the development work he initiated in the district.