Monday, July 24, 2006


TOI: Karnataka wants NIT Surathkal to become an IIT.

BANGALORE: Here’s some good news for engineering aspirants in Karnataka. The Prime Minister’s scientific advisor C N R Rao is batting for an IIT in the state.

The Scientific Advisory Council to the PM (SACPM), which has over 30 eminent scientists from all over the country, has recommended setting up of three IITs including one in Karnataka. The state’s pending demand for an IIT is finally being pushed forward by the eminent scientist from Karnataka.

“Though there are a number of engineering and technical institutes, there is just one IIT in South India. We need more premier institutes here,’’ said Rao, who also heads the standing council of IITs.

The SAC-PM’s recommendations come at a time when anti-quota activists were silenced with the Centre promising them more IITs and IIMs.

The Karnataka government has already submitted a proposal to the HRD ministry expressing its interest to house an IIT. If accepted, the existing National Institute of Technology (NIT) at Suratkal would be upgraded to an IIT.

“We’ve been pushing for an IIT for years. Since Bangalore has an Indian Institute of Management, the Centre is hesitant to sanction another institute of national importance,’’ said D H Shankaramurthy, higher education minister.

With the scientific adviser himself recommending it, the minister hoped the Centre would respond positively. Shankaramurthy will meet Rao to extend all possible support from the state for establishing an IIT.

Two high-powered committees under M Anandakrishnan and S K Joshi have recommended granting IIT status to seven institutes in the country, including two in the South. The institutes are AMU’s Engineering College and Jadavpur Engineering College, Cochin Engineering College, Bengal Engineering College in Shivpur, Osmania Engineering College, University College of Engineering , Hyderabad, and Institute of Technology, Banaras Hindu University.

To promote science education, two more Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISER) would be set up, apart from the ones at Kolkata, Pune and Mohali.

“The fourth institute will be set up in Kerala as the state doesn’t have a central university. Another would be in central India,’’ said Rao.

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