Friday, April 20, 2012

IIT-Delhi scouts for a second home

A six-member team of faculty members and officials from Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi (IIT-D) on Thursday visited some plots in and around Jhajjar near Gurgaon to identify a site for the proposed campus expansion plans of the institute. The team, comprising IIT-Delhi Director R K Shevgaonkar, Deputy Director M Balakrishnan and former Director Surendra Prasad, visited three sites around Jhajjar and has zeroed in on a site “relatively close to Gurgaon”. The land is likely to be used as a research facility as the current campus, which has about 250 acres of functional area, is not not enough for the research needs of the institute.

Deputy Director (Faculty) of IIT-Delhi Professor M Balakrishnan said, “They (Haryana government) has been very positive in their response. They have shown us some sites but there are still many details that need to be looked at. It is really premature right now.” He said that at the current campus, many faculty members “did not have the kind of space required for their research. The proposed site is next to the second campus of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS),” the official said. He added AIIMS has already constructed a boundary wall around the site.

Former IIT-Delhi Director Surendra Prasad had announced during the institute’s Golden Jubilee celebrations in August 2011 that the Haryana government had offered 100 acres of land — free of cost — to IIT-Delhi to built a second campus. He had also said that the funding for the expansion will have to be generated by the institute itself as “this was an IIT-Delhi initiative” and not one of MHRD (Ministry of Human Resource Development).

Professor Balakrishnan said, “We are yet to look into the details of revenue generation and the facilities that may be developed at the new campus.” Early last year, the New York City had also offered IIT-Delhi space to open a campus there but the institute had declined saying that they “wanted to expand within the country first before going abroad.”

Source: The Indian Express, April 20, 2012

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