Saturday, December 10, 2005


Experts divided, new IITs plan put on hold

Experts divided, new IITs plan put on hold

HRD Upgradation of seven institutes to IITs to wait for panel view on visiondocuments


Posted online: Saturday, December 10, 2005 at 0200 hours

With expert opinion divided, the proposal to declare seven existing engineering and technology institutes as new IITs is being grounded for the time being. Officials of the Ministry of HRD said a committee is examining the vision documents prepared by these institutions-some experts say they don't meet the IIT criteria-and future action will be based on the committee's recommendations. On August 15, 2003, the then PM Atal Behari Vajpayee had announced setting up of five new IITs by upgrading existing institutions. ''Expert opinion is divided over the question of declaring existing institutes as IITs. IITs work on a different culture and giving more funds and renaming an existing college may not be the right way to go about it,'' sources told The IndianExpress.

An official pointed out that an earlier committee headed by Prof S K Joshi-that identified these seven institutes of merit-had objected to''positioning these colleges straightaway alongside the IITs'' as this ''may be detrimental to the status of the existing IITs.'' Now, a panel headed by Prof Anand Krishnan is perusing the vision documents of these institutes and''will come up with a plan of action for upgradation''.The seven institutes identified by the Joshi panel are Institute of Technology, BHU; University Colleges of Engineering and Technology ofOsmania University; Bengal Engineering College, Howrah; Engineering andTechnology Departments of Jadavpur University; Zakir Hussain College of Engineering and Technology, AMU; Andhra University College of Engineering; and, Cochin University of Science and Technology.In February this year, the Joshi committee named seven institutions, but also observed that ''all the institutions fall far below the level ofexisting IITs in all criteria.'' The official said enthusiastic campaignersfor ''seven more IITs'' are overlooking this fact.


Chitta's comment: As we have argued earlier in this blog, if the best institutions among the existing ones need to be picked then NITs must be considered, as many of them are better than most of the 7 short listed ones.

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