Wednesday, January 31, 2007
Thursday February 1 2007 00:00 IST
BHUBANESWAR: Taking strong exception to the reported move of the Centre to shift the establishment of an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) from Orissa to Andhra Pradesh, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday shot off a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh demanding that a greenfield IIT should be sanctioned for the State.The Centre had announced establishment of three greenfield IITs in the country during the Eleventh Five Year Plan. Orissa was included in this proposal, which was also announced by Union Minister of State for Human Resources Development MM Fatmi on August 28 last year at Patna.Describing the move by the Centre to establish the IITs in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and Rajasthan as ‘shocking’, the Chief Minister has sought the intervention of the Prime Minister in setting up such an institute in Orissa.Establishment of an IIT would go a long way in supporting the rapid industrial growth in the State by producing highly qualified technical and managerial personnel as well as the much needed R&D support, he said.Drawing the Prime Minister’s attention to the proposal of the IIT, Kharagpur for the upgradation of their extension centre in Orissa to a full-fledged IIT campus, Naveen said that the State Government has also formally recommended the proposal to the Ministry of HRD and conveyed willingness to provide 300 acres of land free of cost for the prestigious project. He requested the Prime Minister to sanction the extension campus also.Stating that the vibrant growth in the industrial and technical education sectors provides enormous potential for industry and institutional linkages, Naveen said that establishment of an IIT in Orissa will greatly facilitate in intensifying this process.Orissa is playing host to the biggest ever FDI projects in the country such as Posco and Arcelor-Mittal steel projects, he said and added that presence of such strong industrial players will definitely provide required synergy for an IIT level institution to realise its full potential.