Sunday, December 24, 2006

PanIIT meets the President


The Pan-IIT (an organization that we encountered here) is organizing a grand meeting in Mumbai. It started yesterday, with an inaugural address by our President, Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.

Before he started, the President asked the audience if they were willing to hear positive, negative or mixed things about them. The answer was a resounding: 'mixed'!

The President exploited that opening to give them more than an earful! His long list of complaints even included the one about how the IIT-ans have contributed very little to our armed forces. At the end of it, the audience that came in totally pumped up must have been wondering why they even got mixed up with the President at all!

The meeting's organization seems to have been below par; so much so that it has put off even the reporter from Rediff which has given this event a very positive coverage for over a month.

4 Comments:

  1. Abi said...

    Over at the other post that I linked to, T. Jayaraman left this comment. I believe it belongs here. So, here it is:

    T. Jayaraman said...

    Following your post, I went to the PanIIT conference website. Come on guys, Shashi Tharoor and SriSriRavishankar as key-note speakers?!! Pathetic. Before the IITians decide to change the ountry maybe they should first give themselves a check-up? The blogs are worse. Somebody even talks of how IITians are ready to follow the Swadesh and (hold your breath) Rang de Basanti model of social engineering!! Hopefully there are smarter IITians around. I draw some solace from the content of your post and the fact you are an IITian yourself.

    Thnks for your blogging, Abi. Most useful.

  2. Abi said...

    Thanks, Jayaraman, for your comment. And for your kind words, too! Well, for the record, I'm not from an IIT; I went to IT-BHU.

    I agree with you about the people whom PanIIT has chosen to invite. SriSriRavishankar certainly is a bizarre choice. I would say George Soros is another!

    As for their blog, I wouldn't take it too seriously. At present, it seems to have posts written almost exclusively by enthusiastic, breathless youngsters with an bloated sense of self-importance and IIT-an triumphalism. Frankly, I find it intriguing that our President chose this forum to prick that balloon.

  3. Phanikumar said...

    Anything done at a very large scale will tend to lose its point. I really wonder what this panIIT meet is actually meant for. If it is to popularize brand IIT, then its bad news. Such things tend to rub many people on the wrong side.

  4. Anonymous said...

    What I find interesting about his speech is that he actually notices the anomaly between the number of women in the IITs and the number of women in engineering in general. In my days as a student in the IITs and even many years later, I have met very few people (including IIT students and professors) who actually noticed this.