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Centre to come out with National Design policy: Kamalnath

Written by: Staff

Gandhinagar, Apr 4 (UNI) Union Commerce and Industry Minister Kamalnath today said the Centre will soon come out with a National Design Policy that will chart out a roadmap for advancement of design education and encourage optimal use of design by industries and other sectors.

''The policy will include setting up of a National Design Council, and spread design education, not only through the expansion of NID's activities but also through coordinated programmes in various IITs, NITs and leading universities, on the one hand, and even ITIs and technical skill institutes on the other,'' Mr Kamalnath said, addressing a gathering after laying the foundation stone for post-graduate campus of National Institute of Design (NID) here.

Union Textiles Minister Shankarsinh Vaghela and Industrial Policy and Promotion Secretary Ajay Dua were also present on the occasion.

Stressing on the importance of design in a competitive world, Mr Kamalnath said Indian industry can no longer afford a laid-back attitude and should incorporate design as an essential ingredient in its product development to gain a competitive edge.

''Design is no longer the preserve of the developed countries.

Emerging economies are producing new global brands. If Korea did it earlier and China can do it now, there is no reason why India cannot do it,'' he said.

He said, ''Our own population base and domestic consumer market is a great advantage, as it provides a readymade platform to launch new well-designed brands. Universal brands like Nokia have come out from countries that are a fraction of the size of India.'' ''India has a huge potential. We have impressive large industries, an enormous small scale sector, varied craft clusters and a huge pool of trained manpower. What more could be asked for as a fertile ground for good design?'' he said.

He stressed that design is not mere ornamentation or only asthetics, but means economy, efficiency and effectiveness. Design not only provides a comparative advantage to a product, but often it can make an unviable project into a viable one, due to cost cutting and increased efficiency.

Praising NID's significant success in promoting design education in the past 45 years, he said, ''Over the decades, the fame of NID has spread not only across the country, but to many parts of world.

The excellence of its education and the contributions it has made to the economy and to societal development, should make us all proud.

It has, by dint of performance, established itself as an institution of national importance.'' He said design is no longer a feature of the manufacturing industry but has an important role to play in the services sector.

''Services is an area where India is bullish. We are aggressively targeting exports of services.'' With this in view, the post graduate campus is focused on sector specific design programmes, which include transportation and automobile design, lifestyle accessory and jewellery design, animation film design, toy design, software and user interface design, information and digital design, new media and several other emergent sectors.

''We must ensure that this campus sets a global benchmark with research-led design education, with a close nexus with industry. I understand that a new model with Industry Service Centre forming the front end, and PG programmes forming the back-end will be followed in this campus for the first time. At least 600-700 students would be studying here creating new ideas and innovations for the new young India.

NID Executive Director Darlie O' Koshy said the construction of the first phase at an outlay of Rs 5.67 crore will soon begin. The overall master plan to be completed in 48 months is estimated at Rs 19.5 crore.


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