Maharaja Sayajirao University of Vadodara (MSU) is all set to launch an undergradute programme in Defense and National Security Studies from the upcoming academic year in July.
A course introduction of the MSU, which plans to begin admissions to 60 seats of the course in July this year, also refers to “biological warfare by releasing lethal virus” as an emerging trend of threat to national security.
The BA Honors programme aims to prepare youth for a career in the country’s defence sector, while also being able to discern policy decision-making in the context of national security. The three-year one-of-its-kind undergraduate course will also include mandatory army training for 240 days in the final year.
The course introduction states, “…Gujarat is going to become a hub of defence equipment manufacturing and generate huge employment in the future. Similarly, there is also an increasing threat of drug trafficking, religious bigotry, sexism, cyber warfare, separatism as well as biological war by releasing the deadly virus to destroy the population through its spread and thereby thwart the economic production process and progress of the country posed by imperialism. So, the subject of national security has become a necessity in the country.”
The programme, which will have a total of six semesters, makes all modules in the syllabus mandatory, including a 240 days training with the Army in the last year. Course Coordinator Dilip Kataria of the Faculty of Arts said, “At present, there is a university in the field of defense in Gujarat, Gandhinagar that offers a PG (MA) Study in National Security at Gujarat Central University. This is the first undergraduate study in the field started by MSU involving a module of army training and the field of large-scale defense operations.”
“The module was suggested by Syndicate members of the University and we have introduced it this year. Initially, the classes will be held online after the admission process in July due to the ongoing Covid-19 curbs. But we are hopeful that by year-end, we will also be able to reopen the physical classrooms.”
The self-financed course, with a fee structure of Rs 24,000 for the first two years and Rs 28,000 for the third year, has been designed with recommendations of a committee of defence experts including Director at Centre for Security & Strategy of India Foundation Alok Bansal, Professor and Dean of Centre of Security Studies in Pune Sanjay Kumar Jha, Head of Department of Political Science at MS University Amit Dholakia, the introduction says. The course, Kataria said, is open to students of all nationalities applying at MSU but the student must have a favourable physical fitness certificate from competent government authorities at the time of admission. It also makes NCC and NSS compulsory for the students enrolling in the same.