University Exchange Programme between Manipur and Thai universities to strengthen Act East Policy

University Exchange Programme
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In a bid to strengthen the Act East Policy of India, Manipur University of Culture and Thailand’s Surindra Rajabhat University & Phranakhon Rajabhat University have been participating in a seven-day long University Exchange Programme. The University Exchange Programme which began on 16th October at the MUC campus in the Palace Compound, Imphal will conclude on October 22nd. The Act East Policy of India consists of three main components – commerce, communication and culture.

Nine delegates from Thailand which includes four teachers and five students representing Surindra Rajabhat University and Phanakhon Rajabhat University, Bangkok, Thailand, were given a warm reception and honored with gifts during the inaugural event. Dr. Tanom Intarakumnerd, the chairman of the University Council of Thailand has been leading this group.

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The visiting Thai delegates have been participating in the University Exchange Programme with a primary focus on learning about Meetei pung, a traditional Meetei drum known for its unique resonance sound not found in other drums worldwide. They will receive a seven-day preliminary training, after which they can opt for further training lasting three months, six months, or a full year.

University Exchange Programme_Culture

During the inaugural function, Prof. Paonam Gunindro, the Vice Chancellor of MUC, highlighted the significance of the Act East Policy, emphasizing that its success hinges on the fulfillment of its three core components: commerce, communication, and culture.

Prof. Gunindro further elaborated on the purpose of Dr. Tanom Intarakumnerd’s visit, mentioning that it stems from a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed on November 26 the previous year. This MoU was established between Surindra Rajabhat University & Phranakhon Rajabhat Thailand and MUC to foster cultural exchange between Thailand and Manipur. It also aimed to facilitate study and research collaboration among students and staff, encourage joint art and culture programs, promote research in performing arts and various cultural aspects, exchange ideas within the academic and research communities, and strengthen cooperation between the involved parties.

The Act East policy is a plan of action by the Indian government to build strong economic and strategic connections with countries in Southeast Asia. This helps India become more influential in the region. It started in 1991 as the Look East policy, which was a new way of thinking about India’s place in the world. The Act East policy aims to take real and practical actions and is focused on getting results in India’s relationships with Southeast Asian countries.

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