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'Invest in research, technology for future of IITs'

Delhi,Education,Science/Tech, Mon, 16 Apr 2012 IANS

New Delhi, April 16 (IANS) Increased investment in research, higher monetary assistance and development of technology for industries are the three steps that will ensure a bright future for the Indian Institutes of Technology, says deputy director of IIT-Delhi M. Balakrishnan.


"If the institute has to progress it must focus on improving its quality and quantity of research, should get more investments and develop technology to be used by industries," Balakrishnan told IANS on the sidelines of the IIT-Delhi Leadership conclave 2012 held here Sunday.


"The number of research scholars is steadily rising and so is the funding but it's technology development that is still in its nascent stage," he added.


According to Balakrishnan, industries in India need to have confidence in the IITs and support them by financially assisting them in developing new technology.


"Instead they go for the cheap option of importing that technology. Industries need to support us," he said.


"We have a great future and promising students as well as young entrepreneurs who have passed from our institute. We need the government as well as private funding and investment," he added.


Commending the government for setting up eight new IITs, Balakrishnan said that it was an indication that the government will fund more in education.


"Although these institutes will take longer time to develop compared to old IITs especially those situated away from metropolises, they will attract good faculty because of the IIT brand," he said.


However, IIT-Delhi Alumni Association president H.R. Vaish was of the view that new institutes could compromise the overall quality of education in the IITs.


"The government should first set up a national college; over the years if it delivers the goods... only then should it be made an IIT," Vaish told IANS.


Vaish claimed that the way the government was treating the IITs led one to believe that "they don't have a great future".


"At present, the future doesn't hold anything great for us. We are working towards improving things though," said Vaish.


According to him, the IITs can't afford to remain complacent with the changing times. The two biggest hurdles in the way are lack of funding and corrupt bureaucracy.


"Even the teachers at such prestigious institutes are not paid adequately. They are grooming the future leaders of this country and what are they getting in return?" he asked.


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