KOLKATA: Delhi has one, so do Mumbai and Chennai. But Kolkata? City dwellers who have waited years for an IIT to call their own, won’t have to wait much longer. By 2008, New Town Rajarhat could be home to the second campus of Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur. The new campus to be spread over 10 acres will house a large number of R&D facilities and an incubation centre, in addition to undergraduate and PG departments. Like the one in Kharagpur, this one too will be completely residential, with hostel accommodation for at least 2,000 students. "The foundation stone will be laid in two months. The first phase will be over by 2007 and the entire campus should be ready by 2008,"said IIT-Kgp director S K Dube. The new campus will focus on industrial requirements. Industry-institute interface will be optimum because of New Town's locational advantage. The incubation centre will have students and researchers working on different projects given to the institute by industry.
The experience they will gain will help them find placements when industry comes scouting for talent. The New Town chapter will boost placements for another reason. Though IIT Kgp students did bag some of the plummest offers this year (giving the IIMs a run for their money), many corporate houses did not go to Kharagpur because of the distance. The Rajarhat campus will solve this problem. Yet another plus point: the new campus will be able to work closely with the IT industry that has come up at Sector V in Salt Lake. Portions of the undergraduate and PG departments in IT, computer science, electronics and nanotechnology are expected to be shifted to Rajarhat after a nod from the IIT Kgp senate. The institute has already purchased the land at a subsidised rate.