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Ramesh dose for IIT ‘disease’

Bhubaneswar, May 5: Jairam Ramesh today warned against regionalism in higher education.

The Union minister for rural development and drinking water and sanitation said higher education in the country was suffering from “narrow provincialism and inbreeding of faculty” and the IITs had not escaped it.

“The IITs should remember that they are national institutes and must rise above regionalism,” he said.

“There should not be just Pandas and Mohapatras at IIT-Bhubaneswar, but students from all over the country. The authorities should make a conscious effort to bring in people from across the nation,” Ramesh said and pointed out that IITs were full of faculty members who had studied at the same IIT and ended up as teachers there.

“They should be made to work outside for five years and then be allowed to teach at the IIT where they studied,” he said. The Union minister was speaking at the Pan IIT Alumni Bhubaneswar Meet that began here today. More than 400 IIT alumni from across the state attended the event.

Sandeepan Chakroborty, chairman of the Pan IIT Alumni 2012 Global Conference, said IITians should use the Pan IIT platform to work for society.

“We must take the initiative to make the unemployable engineers of the state employable…. There is a huge dearth of thesis guides for PhD students because of which many interested candidates are not able to pursue research. They can be helped out,” he said.

Commissioner of the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation Vishal Dev, who is also an IIT alumnus, said the Pan IIT Bhubaneswar chapter would concentrate on improving the quality of technical education in the state. Director, IIT-Bhubaneswar, M. Chakroborty said the tuition fees of two students from IIT would be sponsored by Pan IIT.