“Opening so may IITs in one year is a disaster. I had no idea that so many IITs have already come up in our country,” he told reporters on the sidelines of an event at the Federation of Indian Cambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
Six new IITs - in Orissa, Bihar, Rajasthan, Punjab and Andhra Pradesh - have started operations from the current academic session. India now has 13 IITs.
“This is not a play. To open IITs, you need proper planning. There are makeshift campuses and some are even attending classes in old IITs,” said the renowned scientist.
“I came to know about this development after the institutes admitted students. This is sad and I have told the prime minister and even the human resource development minister (Arjun Singh) about this. I am dissatisfied with the developments,” said Rao, a visiting professor at Cambridge University.
IITs are premier engineering colleges of the country. Manmohan Singh has already announced that India will have eight new IITs, including the six opened this year, to boost engineering and technology education.
> of faculty from the old IITs to the new ones, apparently because of a rule
> that has been imposed that faculty enjoying pension benefits at the older
> IITs would loose the same if they migrate from an old IIT to the new IIT.
> The faculty recruited for the new IITs and those who have been recruited in
> the old IITs too in recent times ( like all others recruited in recent times
> for Central Govt. services) are not entitled to the pension scheme
> applicable to the senior faculty, as I understand.
The underlying issue is true (acute faculty shortage in new IITs), but
this particular pension issue is solvable, I believe. The old Government
pension scheme is closed as of 2004 and all central government employees
recruited since then are in a standard contributory (non-pension)
retirement scheme. Since the new IITs were started more recently, they
have no provision for anything other than this new contributory scheme,
even if one was shifting was a previous job with the pension scheme. At
the old IITs, those entering the system after 2004 are in this new scheme,
but those who shift from a previous job covered under the old pension
scheme are allowed to continue in the old pension scheme. We need to make
some procedural change that will enable this in the new IITs, I think this
is doable with some influence and lobbying from alums, for example. But I
am not sure this is the main reason people are not going to the new IITs -
many seem to be adopting the wait-and-watch strategy. Senior faculty
members, even those from Hyderabad, for example, are reluctant to shift
from IITM to IITH citing above reason. They are wary.
> In my view Pan IIT alumni should express their concern to the Minister for
> HRD, as the brand IIT image will take severe beating if necessary steps are
> not taken to address these issues urgently.
I would put a slightly different spin on this; we should accept the new
IITs as one of our own and see what we can do so that the brand image does
not get diluted. We should extend all lobbying and other support so these
new IITs come up to speed faster - they don't have alums like us, and so
it is up to us to do this.