An IIT in Orissa: PM Vajpayee on Aug 15, 2003 had
setting up of 5 new IITs by upgrading promising academic institutions.
With that news there has been a lot of lobbying
by various states, institutions, and other groups. For example, see
In March 2005, the committee that was set up came up with its
(see , )
recommendation of upgrading 7 engineering colleges to IITs, based
on their current research record and facilities. But in this
comparison, none of the NITs were considered. Orissa must oppose this
report, and push for considering the NITs. Then
NIT Rourkela may have
a good chance. If new IITs are to be made from scratch then Orissa
must make a case to have one in the BBSR area. In this Orissa should join
Andhra Pradesh, which is keen on having an IIT in Basar. ***
Recent reports suggest that the UPA government may not quite
implement the above mentioned recommendation. See the
rediff column on this and another
article on this.
More on this:
[IIT in Kerala?];
Editor's comment July 1 05: New IITs should be regionally balanced
(i.e, a particular geographical regions should not have
too many IITs while another regions has much fewer IITs) and
states without any IIT should be preferred over states
already with an IIT.
A better way to make new IITs: Since there is a lot of issues in upgrading existing institutes (such as making them IIT quality; dilution of IIT label) to IITs and creating brand new IITs immediately I suggest the following:
Upgrade the only non-IIT institute, IT BHU, which is worthy of being an IIT to an IIT immediately.
But that would further skew the distribution of IITs across Indian states. To counter that, and since India needs more IITs anyway, do the following.
Pick a few (say 5 or 6) states (Orissa, Bihar, Rajasthan, etc.) that are behind in terms of national level institutes like IITs and IIMs and establish a mini-IIT their with a mandate to make them into a full-fledged IIT in 10 years. Each of these mini-IITs would have a mentor from among the existing IITS whose mandate would be to make the new IIT. For example, IIT Kharagpur has an extension center in Bhubaneswar (in Orissa which does not have an IIT or IIM) that currently offers PGDIT. This can be declared as a mini-IIT and IIT Kharagpur can be given responsibility to turn it into a full-fledged IIT in 10 years. They can start with graduate programs, and add one department every year, introduce undergraduate programs in 3-4 yeats, and so on, until it becomes a full-fledged IIT in 10 years.
IIEST (Indian Inst of Engg. Sc and Technology)
Hindustan Times mentions that Bengal Engineering and Science University, Institute of Technology,
Beneras Hindu University, Cochin University of Science and Technology,
Andhra University, College of Engineering and Osmania University
College of Engineering and University College of Techonology will be made IIESTs instead of IITs.
the IIEST will have more funds than NITs then the best NITs should also
be tagged as IIESTs and new NITs should be made in those states. For
example, NIT Rourkela is ranked higher than four of the above five
selected institutes. So if IIEST will have a higher level in the eye of
the central govt (especially with respect to funding) then NIT Rourkela
should be upgraded to an IIEST and UCE Burla should be upgraded to an
Editor's comment (July 1 2005):
The KBK region of Orissa is the most backward region of India,
even more than North-east, where most of the central
universities are located. So a comprehensive central university
should be made in the KBK region. This university should have
some of its departments spread across various towns in the KBK region,
such as places like Koraput, Bhawanipatna, Balangir, and Raygada.
Editor's comment (July 1 2005):
Like the Northeast region of India
which often feels
alientaed from the rest of India, the mountainous
region of central India with a very high adivasi population
is very underdeveloped and has bad infrastructure and as
a result one sees activities and groups such as the Naxalites
and the PWGs. The central
government should focus on infrastructure development in these
areas in AP, Orissa, Jharkhand and Chhatisgarh. Establishment of
comprehensive central universities should be an important part of this