Friday, July 18, 2008

It's raining IITs

The Cabinet ... approved creation of 30 faculty posts per year in the first three years of establishment of each of the new IITs, besides approving the posts of a director and registrar. A decision was also taken to raise the grade of all existing IIT directors to Rs 26,000 (fixed) from Rs 25,000 now.

It's official! The creation of eight new IITs is a done deal; they are going to be in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Punjab, Orissa, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, and Madhya Pradesh. The first six will start their academic session this year itself, while the last two will start in 2009-10.

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In a much awaited development, the Cabinet also approved the conversion of the Institute of Technology at the Banaras Hindu University (IT-BHU) into an IIT. I don't know what the official abbreviation of this IIT is, but Sanjay Dani, an IT-BHU alumnus, created a Facebook group for IIT-Varanasi -- two weeks ago! (And I ended up becoming the second member of this group ;-) It already has over 160 members.

Update: There's quite a bit of celebration over at the site. Animesh sounds a "cautiously optimistic" note, though:

Sadly, I have been badly burnt multiple times on this, and would wait for the proverbial cup to get to the proverbial lip :).

Cautiously optimistic ...

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Here's the press release from the Press Information Bureau.


  1. Anonymous said...

    This is excellent news. In 1968 the three colleges were merged into an institute of Technology with Prof Gopal Tripathi as its first Director. This made me decide to stay on.
    Along with others I wrote letters for its conversion into an IIT . It is good to see the fruition of these efforts.
    At Cambridge they called it REFOUNDATION when New Hall ,established in 1954, was renamed as Murray Edwards College in 2008 to reflect the names of the first Pincipal and a major alumnus donor.
    The Refoundation of IIT at BHU will mark a new dawn in engineering education in India as did its predecessors

  2. RaSh said...

    Conversion of IT-BHU into an "IIT" is surely a good move, as now IT-BHU will be able to add on to the "IIT" Brand :)

    But on the other hand, I personally feel coming up with the other IITs was a wrong decision. Without the infrastructure and faculty required, I feel the gov isn't doing justice to the students who are joining these new IITs. There are already news about there being a lack of funds for such IITs.

    But the motive behind this, to provide better standard of higher education, is surely a noble one!

    PS: Been reading your Blog for a while now. Really informative!

  3. Niket said...

    No thought is given to how we will accommodate twice the number of students in just three years. There is a significant increase due to the OBC quota affair and we are hosting IIT-Hyd.

    One of the best courses we have here is ID-110... perhaps the only course in four years that makes students think and do stuff. And the students enjoy it. Currently, 520 students take this course, coming batch is 600 and in two years, it will be 900. We don't have infrastructure to support these large numbers.

    Somehow, I feel we brought this upon ourselves. We should have been more proactive in spawning more universities. The decision to increase the number of IITs has come two-three decades too late... and without adequate thought into it.

    Not to mention, IITs ain't "real universities," though we do acknowledge the need to have good humanities programme in our institute.

    [Sidenote: I don't understand the euphoria (if I may use that word) in some of the IT-BHU alumni in renaming it IIT.]

  4. RaSh said...

    @Niket: I feel the main advantage of IT-BHU renaming to IIT is the change in the way the crowd thinks about it. Plus, the alumni get the "IIT Alumni" tag.

    I don't see why it'll effect companies etc as they are already aware of the high standard of IT-BHU, and just a change in name won't make much of a difference for them!

    One more thing I would like to point out is the new BITS Pilani Hyderabad Campus. Unlike the new IITs, the campus has completed the initial phases and only then the admissions have begun. I feel this should have been the approach of IITs too. :)

  5. jimmy said...

    wow...proverbial cup to get to the proverbial lip: LOL
    and 'cautiously optimistic', words wonderfully chosen.