Nalanda University’s New Campus: Reviving an Ancient Seat of Learning

Paromita Das

GG News Bureau

New Delhi, 21 June. Nalanda University, once a beacon of ancient knowledge and learning, has been resurrected in the 21st century with a modern campus that aims to blend historical significance with contemporary educational needs. Located in Rajgir, Bihar, the new campus of Nalanda University is designed to honor its ancient legacy while fostering an environment conducive to cutting-edge research and interdisciplinary learning.

In this landmark event for higher education in Bharat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the new campus of Nalanda University in Rajgir, Bihar. Spanning over 450 acres, the campus is a testament to modern sustainable architecture, designed as a ‘Net Zero’ Green Campus that prioritizes environmental conservation.

Historical Significance

The original Nalanda University, established during the Gupta dynasty in the 5th century AD, was one of the world’s first residential universities. It attracted scholars from various parts of the globe, including China, Korea, Japan, Tibet, Mongolia, Turkey, Sri Lanka, and Southeast Asia. The ancient university was renowned for its vast library, rigorous curriculum, and illustrious alumni, which included famous scholars like Xuanzang and Dharmakīrti.

Vision and Mission         

The vision of the modern Nalanda University is to be an internationally acclaimed institution of higher learning. It aims to uphold the spirit of the ancient university, fostering intellectual exchange and holistic education. The university’s mission is to advance knowledge and understanding in a variety of disciplines, particularly in areas such as historical studies, ecology and environment studies, and Buddhist studies.

Campus Design and Architecture

The new campus of Nalanda University spans across 455 acres of land in the town of Rajgir. The design philosophy integrates sustainability, energy efficiency, and traditional architectural styles. Key features of the campus include:

  1. Eco-friendly Infrastructure: The newly established Nalanda University campus is built with a strong focus on sustainability and innovation. The ‘Net Zero’ design ensures that the campus operates with minimal environmental impact, balancing energy consumption with renewable energy production. The campus buildings are designed to minimize energy consumption and maximize the use of renewable resources. This includes solar power, rainwater harvesting, and sustainable landscaping. This initiative aligns with global efforts to combat climate change and promotes an eco-friendly lifestyle among students and staff.
  2. Modern Facilities: State-of-the-art classrooms, research centres, and laboratories provide students and faculty with the necessary tools to engage in advanced studies and innovative research.
  3. Residential Complexes: Reflecting the ancient university’s residential nature, the new campus includes well-planned hostels and staff quarters that foster a close-knit academic community.
  4. Library: The new library is a nod to the ancient Nalanda’s extensive collection of manuscripts and texts. It is equipped with digital resources and vast collections to support diverse academic pursuits.
  5. Cultural and Recreational Spaces: Amphitheaters, auditoriums, and green spaces are integral to the campus, encouraging cultural exchange and holistic development.

Academic Programs

Nalanda University offers a variety of postgraduate programs and doctoral studies. These include:

  • School of Historical Studies: This school explores ancient and contemporary histories, fostering a deep understanding of cultural and civilizational exchanges.
  • School of Ecology and Environment Studies: Addressing critical environmental challenges, this school integrates scientific, social, and humanistic perspectives to promote sustainable development.
  • School of Buddhist Studies, Philosophy, and Comparative Religions: Reflecting Nalanda’s historical association with Buddhism, this school offers an in-depth exploration of philosophical and religious traditions across Asia.

State-of-the-Art Facilities

The campus boasts state-of-the-art facilities that include:

  • Two Academic Blocks: Equipped with 40 classrooms, these blocks are designed to provide a conducive learning environment for both students and faculty. The classrooms are furnished with modern educational technologies to enhance teaching and learning experiences.
  • Accommodation for 1900 Students: The campus is prepared to house approximately 1900 students, providing them with a vibrant and inclusive community. The residential facilities are designed to offer comfort and convenience, fostering a holistic educational experience.
  • Two Auditoriums: Each with a seating capacity of 300 students, the auditoriums are equipped with advanced audiovisual systems. These venues are ideal for hosting lectures, seminars, cultural events, and conferences, enriching the academic and extracurricular life of the university.

A Legacy of Knowledge and Culture

 Nalanda University, with its rich historical legacy, stands as a symbol of Bharat’s ancient educational prowess. The new campus in Rajgir seeks to revive this heritage by integrating traditional values with contemporary educational practices. The inauguration by Prime Minister Modi marks a significant step in the university’s journey towards becoming a global center of learning and research.

In his address, Prime Minister Modi emphasized the importance of education in national development and the role of institutions like Nalanda University in shaping future generations. He highlighted the government’s commitment to enhancing educational infrastructure and promoting sustainable development. The inauguration of Nalanda University’s new campus is not just a milestone for the institution but also a significant contribution to the educational landscape of Bharat. With its blend of tradition and modernity, the campus promises to inspire a new era of learning and innovation.


The new campus of Nalanda University in Rajgir stands as a beacon of sustainable development and educational excellence. As it opens its doors to students from around the world, it reaffirms Bharat’s commitment to preserving its educational heritage while embracing the future. It symbolizes a bridge between ancient wisdom and modern innovation, providing a platform for scholars to engage in meaningful and transformative education. As Nalanda University continues to grow, it remains committed to its foundational values of intellectual rigor, cultural exchange, and sustainable development. This inauguration marks the beginning of a new chapter in the University’s illustrious history, poised to make significant contributions to global knowledge and culture.


Comments are closed.