Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Mandi celebrated its 13th Foundation Day on March 6, with Jawaharlal Nehru University chancellor and NITI Aayog member Vijay Kumar Saraswat as the chief guest. The event was attended by the institute’s faculty, staff, students and distinguished guests.
Speaking on the occasion, Saraswat said, “An interdisciplinary approach to learning is essential to scale new frontiers of technology. Interdisciplinary science and social engineering can solve the world’s complex problems. The world needs highly creative engineering graduates, and they are in this hall today. You can solve the world’s problems with ethical and sustainable solutions using interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary engineering.”
IIT Mandi director Laxmidhar Behera added, “Over the last decade, IIT Mandi has built many world-class facilities like the Advanced Material Research Centre (AMRC), Bio-X, and the C4DFED facility for the fabrication of semiconductor chips. We aim to make IIT Mandi primarily a research Institute. All these centres can contribute to the growth of the institute and the nation. Given my background in robotics and artificial intelligence (AI), I plan to develop a world-class, state-of-the-art laboratory on Cognitive Robotics and HCI (Human-Computer Interaction) to find smart solutions in healthcare, education, agriculture, and defence.”
Behera credited the centres at IIT Mandi with putting the institute on the map for innovation in India. In an effort to advance the entrepreneurial culture in the Himalayan region, IIT Mandi’s Technology Business Incubator, Catalyst, had organized the HST Start-up Grand Challenge in 2021. The winning start-ups were awarded Rs 5 lakh in cash and up to Rs 50 lakh in funding.
“The entrepreneurship and incubation activities of Catalyst have helped reach IIT Mandi on the national innovation map. In the recent Atal Rankings of Institutions on Innovation Achievements (ARIIA) for 2021, IIT Mandi was ranked among the top 20 institutions in the country. As director, my role will be to focus on the key areas that can enable India to achieve self-sufficiency (Atmanirbharta) and build a sustainable future,” Behera said.
To date, IIT Mandi’s Career and Placement Cell has received 224 job offers during the pandemic from a variety of companies for the 2021-22 academic session. As many as 175 companies have registered for placements at the cell, which has hosted 120 companies until now for full-time equivalent (FTE) hiring, including top corporates like Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Adobe, Flipkart, Oracle, Paytm, Qualcomm, Synopsys, Texas Instruments, BPCL, BEL, L&T and Deloitte.
Additionally, 191 students have received internships. There have been 86 internship registrations by companies, and the cell hosted 65 companies for the internship drive, including top recruiters like Walmart, Uber, Sprinklr, Arista networks, Zomato, Intel, Nvidia, and Siemens.
During the pandemic year, IIT Mandi also made rapid strides in science, technology, innovation, academics, entrepreneurship, research & development, and international linkages. In the past one year, the institute’s faculty are involved in 38 new sponsored research projects worth over Rs 16 crore and 15 consultancy projects, amounting to over Rs 88 lakh from different funding agencies.