Jerusalem: President Pranab Mukherjee will receive honorary doctorates from three leading universities in Jordan, Palestinian Authority and Israel during his maiden six-day visit to West Asia beginning next week.
Pranav Mukherjee. Pic/PTI
The University of Jordan (UJ) will be the first of the three varsities to bestow the honour on Mukherjee, a varsity statement said, adding that the honorary doctorate will be in political science.
An official at the Al-Quds university in the Palestinian Authority (PA) said that "given the special ties enjoyed between Palestinians and India, it gives us pride to felicitate the Indian President with an honorary doctorate".
"India has been at the forefront of academic cooperation with the Palestinians and we receive a lot of help from the Indian government in the field of education," he added. Mukherjee will be accompanied by Vice Chancellors and heads of leading Indian institutions, indicating the country's desire to develop strong educational links with the leading universities in the region.
Hebrew University of Jerusalem, ranked among the top universities worldwide, will also be conferring an honorary doctorate on Mukherjee at a specially organised event.
President Mukherjee will travel to Israel and Palestine this weekend, becoming the first Head of Indian State to visit these two rival nations and providing an opportunity for him to impress upon the leadership there to reduce tensions.
The six-day visit, beginning Saturday, will also take him to Jordan, where he is expected to make an appeal for help in securing release of 39 Indians held by ISIS in Mosul town of Iraq.