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Nalanda University Reopens After 1600 Years, Inaugurated by PM Modi-Check exclusive timeline of events since inception 


Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Bihar, June 19, to inaugurate the new Nalanda University Campus in Rajgir. It is the first time the Prime Minister has visited Bihar since forming the third consecutive government. The historic inauguration took place at 10:30 am and was followed by an address of the gathering, in which ambassadors from over 17 partner countries were present. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, the chief of JD(U), Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar (NDA’s Partner), and Governor Rajendra Arlekar were also present.

A Special Day For Education

Prime Minister Narendra Modi regarded the occasion as a special day for the nation’s education sector. The Prime Minister took to his X (formerly Twitter) account to add a post that said:

“It’s a very special day for our education sector. At around 10:30 a.m. today, the new campus of Nalanda University will be inaugurated in Rajgir. Nalanda has a strong connection with our glorious part. This university will surely go a long way in catering to the educational needs of the youth.”

The New Campus: A Closer Look

The new campus is named after the ancient university, which attracted scholars from around the globe about 1600 years ago. The campus is “Net Zero Campus”, and it has been engineered to be self-sustaining through solar plants, a water recycling plant to make wastewater and 100 acres of water bodies reusable, and a domestic and drinking water treatment plant. 

Nalanda University was set up in 2010 and is located less than 20 km from the ancient ruins of the original university, which is now also a World Heritage Site, Nalanda Mahavira. 

Before it was set up, a proposal to establish the international university and its namesake as an ancient site of learning was endorsed by member countries at the East Asia Summit.

However, it was the then president, the late APJ Abdul Kalam, who advocated for the ancient university’s revival during his address at a joint session of the Bihar Assembly. The university was conceived as a collaboration between India and East Asia Summit (EAS) countries.

Highlights from the Inauguration Ceremony

As Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated, it is a special day for the education sector of our country, as students, both Indian and international, can now attend the international university. 

It has two academic blocks of 40 classrooms with a capacity of 1900, two 300-seat auditoriums, an international center, a sports complex, a 2000-seat amphitheater, and a hostel for 550 students. Students would be able to pursue postgraduate and doctoral research courses, and there are over 137 scholarships for international students.

Through the historic inauguration, Nalanda University would again attract scholars from around the world, just as it did with the ancient university 1600 years ago.

Nalanda University: Ancient Glory to Modern Revival

  • 5th Century CE: Nalanda University is founded, becoming a leading center of learning known for its broad curriculum and scholarly achievements.
  • 5th-6th Centuries CE: Flourished under Gupta Empire patronage, attracting scholars and students from across Asia.
  • 7th Century CE: Thrives under Emperor Harsha; Chinese scholar Xuanzang visits and documents its grandeur.
  • 9th-12th Centuries CE: Begins gradual decline despite remaining influential.
  • 1193 CE: Destroyed by Turkic Muslim forces, marking its end.
  • 19th Century: Rediscovered through archaeological excavations.
  • 1951: Nava Nalanda Mahavihara was established for Buddhist studies near the ruins.
  • 2009: East Asia Summit endorses Nalanda University revival.
  • 2010: Nalanda University Act passed, re-establishing the university.
  • 2014: Modern Nalanda University inaugurates academic activities.
  • 2017: Vijay Pandurang Bhatkar was appointed as chancellor.
  • 2021: Launches master’s and doctoral programs in Humanities.
  • 2024: Admissions open for the academic year 2024-2025, continuing its academic legacy.

Therefore, the  recent regeneration of Nalanda University depicts India’s commitment to social justice and sustainable development goals towards world education aspirations. This university is equipped with modern facilities, and it had its roots in the 5th century. It is a university that aims to foster learning and scholarly activities and also collaborate with universities in other countries. 


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