Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Thursday thanked India's East Asia Summit partners for contributing to the setting up of the Nalanda University in Bihar as six countries began the process of signing inter-government agreements stating their commitment to this ambitious academic venture.
Academic sessions at the University are set to begin next year. "I would like to thank the East Asia Summit participating countries for their support for the establishment of Nalanda University as an international institution of excellence.
I am happy that the process of signing the inter-governmental Memorandum of Understanding on the Nalanda University has begun," said the prime minister addressing the 8th East Asia Summit (EAS) here. "I hope students and faculty from all EAS countries will participate in this exciting venture."
The countries which are signing these pacts include Australia, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, New Zealand and Singapore.
"It is for the first time that such an agreement is being signed at EAS," officials said, adding that there will be five representatives from the EAS on the university's governing board.
The university is being built near the ruins of the historic institution of higher learning at Rajgir in Bihar.