Mukesh Ambani, Chairperson of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) is planning to establish a world-class education hub in Navi Mumbai. This education hub will have collaboration with world-renowned universities like Cambridge, Oxford and Harvard.
A 400-acre plot was owned by Ambani and Anand Jain near Ulwe in Navi Mumbai. They had acquired this land to develop a Special Economic Zone (SEZ). Recently, the state’s industrial policy was revised, due to which this land has been “unlocked”. Now, the land can be put to any other use. The original plan to build a SEZ was scrapped because the land was under the “flying zone” of the proposed Navi Mumbai International Airport. It is not permitted under the aviation rule to build sky-scrapers in such zones. So, it was decided to build an international education hub on the land. Earlier, Ambani had announced about his plans to set up a “world-class, multi disciplinary university” in Maharashtra in the annual general meeting in 2011.
“The education will be innovative and students will have wide scope to conduct research on anything that interests them. The campus will have state-of-the-art facilities,” said a source. Nita Ambani, wife of Mukesh Ambani, is actively monitoring the development of this project. Nita has been actively involved in education projects and she wants this proposed education hub to be a prominent centre among world universities. It will offer a comprehensive, all –round education –from kindergarten to research.
According to the initial plans, the education hub will be autonomous. A senior executive working with Reliance said, “We will bring western and eastern culture and talent together. We will offer courses in science, arts and professional streams.”
A senior spokesperson of Reliance Industries Limited said the plan is still in infant stage. “We are still working out the modalities and understanding the nitty-gritty of the revised government policy. However, so far nothing has been fixed yet. The plan will take concrete form in coming future,” said the spokesperson.
This is the second education initiative by Mukesh Ambani, as previously RIL had signed a pact with Gujarat government to develop Gandhinagar-based, Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University into a top world class institute.
“In the last few years Reliance has been associated with Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University and today the company has signed a MoU and has envisaged to develop this university into a premium world class university,” said Ambani on the pact.