Pankaj Jalote, a professor of computer science at IIT-D (and whose ideas we have covered earlier), has a ToI op-ed today about the continuing slide of IITs in world rankings. After presenting some ideas about the ways in which IITs need to change to stem the slide, he concludes his column on a dim note:
IITs have suitable structures to potentially implement such schemes and lead the way, if they get the right leadership and necessary autonomy.
Unfortunately, the leadership of these institutes, being a beneficiary of political patronage, is unwilling to take any bold moves.
They have tended to play safe and keep the ministry happy, rather than bring about innovation and controversial changes. So, changes are undoubtedly needed, without which Indian institutions will continue to slide.
But it is doubtful whether any movement along this direction will be undertaken. That is why I believe that IITs will continue slipping in global rankings, despite having the potential to improve.