By Jakarta Post | INDONESIA |
Muslim-majority Indonesia has just approved the creation of its first Hindu university with an upgrade of a Bali-based institute.
Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has issued a presidential regulation (Perpres) that turns Hindu Dharma State Institute (IHDN) in Denpasar into the country’s first Hindu state university.
It takes on the name of I Gusti Bagus Sugriwa State Hindu University (UHN).
In a 31 Jan statement available at its website, IHDN rector Prof Gusti Ngurah Sudiana said: “Clearly this shows that President Jokowi has given special attention to Hindu educational institutions in Bali in order to improve the quality of our human capital.”
He said that the regulation, dated 20 Jan 2020, marked a historic moment for the Hindu faithful in Indonesia.
The regulation stated that the new university would “administer Hindu higher education programs” as well as other types of higher education programs “to support Hindu higher education programs”, according to a Jakarta Post report.
Through the regulation, which was enacted last week, all current IHDN students are converted to UHN students, and all the institute’s assets and employees are transferred to the newly formed university.
The institute started out as a state academy for Hindu religion teachers in 1993, before being converted into the Hindu Religion State College in 1999, and then into the IHDN in 2004, the newspaper added.
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