The Oxford India Centre currently being built by Somerville College, with help from the Indian government, has been profiled in The Hindu, one of India’s biggest-selling national dailies.

The article features a photograph from the College archives which shows Indira Gandhi, an alumna of the College, being shown around the College grounds in 1971, when she was Prime Minister of India.

Indira Gandhi is remembered for her environmental policies and concern, in an era when environmental politics was barely in its infancy.

In 1972 the United Nations called a conference on the environment in Stockholm. The only two speakers were the Swedish prime minister, who hosted the conference, and Indira Gandhi, who sought to show the links between environmental degradation and poverty.

The Oxford-India Centre aims to become a global hub for research into sustainable development and will welcome bursary scholars from India each year. Funded jointly by the University of Oxford and the government of India, the first three Indira Gandhi Scholars have just arrived at Somerville. They are all graduates of Indian universities, and are enrolled on masters’ courses relating to different aspects of sustainable development, with a special focus on food security.

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