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Corporate big-guns to attend IIT-D meet

BS Corporate Bureau in New Delhi | February 12, 2004 10:31 IST

Some of the best names from the corporate world, including Hindustan Lever Chairman M S 'Vindi' Banga, ITC Chairman Y C Deveshwar, and NIIT Chairman R S Pawar, will descend on the Capital on February 18 for the alumni meet of the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi (IIT-D).

The illustrious products of IIT-D will participate in several seminars and discussions scheduled throughout the day, and put forth their vision for their alma mater.

The alumni association of IIT-D was asked by the institute's review committee to give its recommendations for an overhaul of the country's premier engineering institutes.

The alumni committee has been working on a set of proposals since July 2003, which it will finalise during the event. The event will be kicked off with presentations on the theme 'IIT Vision 2020' by seven corporate honchos and senior professors of IIT-D.

The panel discussions will cover issues like the IITs' faculty, infrastructure, and research agenda.

Besides Banga, Deveshwar and Pawar, Reliance Industries CEO Akhil Gupta and Jubilant Organosys co-Chairman and Managing Director Hari Bhartiya will be taking part in the discussions.

"The annual alumni meet is usually just a get-together, where we catch up with our old mates and do some networking. But this year's event will be more focused on our vision for the IITs," said K Dhar, ex-president of the IIT-D alumni association.

The alumni association's recommendations, which will be submitted to the review committee, says the IITs should aspire to become one of the top five technical institutes in the world.

"That will be possible only if they lay more emphasis on post-graduate research. Research excellence is the key to academic excellence. At the under-graduate level, we are on par with the MITs and Stanfords of the world," said Dhar.

The association believes that the IITs have the potential to become a source of technology for the world.

"The changes that we bring in today will bear fruit only after 20 years. Remember that countries like China have already initiated similar projects," Dhar pointed out

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