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IIT Madras Celebrates 65th Institute Day, targets enrolling 50,000 online and offline

By   /  April 20, 2024  /  Comments Off on IIT Madras Celebrates 65th Institute Day, targets enrolling 50,000 online and offline

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CHENNAI : Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) celebrated its 65th Institute Day today (20th April 2024) with students, faculty, alumni teaching and non-teaching staff. A highlight of the event was the honouring of alumni, faculty and students for their extraordinary achievements over the last year.

A major feat of the Institute was gaining the top honours in the National Institutional Rankings Framework (NIRF) Rankings, becoming the Number 1 institute in ‘Overall’ category for five consecutive years and Number 1 in ‘Engineering’ Category for eight consecutive years. It also bagged the 2nd spot in the ‘Research’ and ‘Innovations’ categories of the same Rankings.

The Event Live Stream can be found using the following link – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FIlytvs_twU

The Chief Guest of this occasion was Dr. V. Sumantran, Chairman of the Board of Directors of InterGlobe Aviation Ltd. (IndiGo Airlines), and Chairman, Celeris Technologies. Dr. V. Sumantran is an alumnus of the 1981 batch of BTech in Aeronautical Engineering and a Distinguished Alumnus of IIT Madras.

Dr. Sumantran is a unique combination of business leader, technocrat, academic and author, having lived and worked in the US, Europe and Asia during a 40-year career. He also serves and has served on the boards of several corporations, and as advisor to several Fortune-100 organizations in autos, technology, industrial equipment, and aerospace.

Addressing the Institute Day event, Dr. V. Sumantran, Chairman of the Board of Directors of InterGlobe Aviation Ltd. (IndiGo Airlines), and Chairman, Celeris Technologies, said, “Being a student in the Aeronautics Department, our batch was typically between 9 and 12 students and we had a personal relationship with our professors. They knew us well. It was also a time of so much flexibility and encouragement. I volunteered during my summer vacations at the super sonic wind tunnel in the Department, which prepared me well for my future endeavours.”

Dr. V. Sumantran added, “All focus on cost innovation and frugaityl does not mean we have to be limited in scale. Indigo is an airline that initially started as a low-cost airline and is a very young airline by global airline standards. We were founded only in 2006. The entire platform of this airline has been ‘affordable fares, courteous service, on-time performance and very well networked route system’.”

Further, Dr. V. Sumantran said, “Even now, as India is really moving forward with a lot more speed. We are seeing the infrastructure in the system grow. We have got about 140 operating airports now that will be 220 by the year 2030. We are seeing huge increases in regional travel and beyond the domestic, India is slowly becoming a convenient hub for travel between South East Asia and the Middle East. There is a huge amount of growth that we can see coming out of this. Last year in Paris (Air Show), we placed an order for 500 aircraft, which is the single largest aircraft order in aviation history, counting by number of aircraft order. This was built based on the confidence we have of the Indian Market, how it is growing and how increasingly we can take this scale even more globally.”

“We have the largest number of women pilots for any airline in the world. This is not based on women pilots per aircraft. We are also among the lowest CO2 emissions per-seat per-km in the world. Indigo is the third most valuable airline in the world. On a global scale, we have been able to earn our place among the biggest and most valuable airlines in the world. The message is that India offers for us a phenomenal platform. For a sustainable world, India can offer lessons on how to grow with responsibility – Achieve more with less and Secondly, well before even 2047, many of our enterprises can be globally successful,” Dr. V. Sumantran concluded.

Dr. Sumantran started his career with a 16-year stint with General Motors at their Research Laboratories in Detroit and subsequently on deputation in Europe as Director-R&D at the GMFIAT Alliance. At the invitation of Shri Ratan Tata, he returned to India in 2001 as the Chief Executive Officer of TATA Motors’ Car business in its formative years. During this time, he led the growth of that fledgling Passenger Car business, with the Tata Indica and Indigo among others, to become India’s 2nd largest automaker.

Delivering the Presidential Address, Prof. V. Kamakoti, Director, IIT Madras, said, “IIT Madras BS Data Science and Electronic Systems progams have crossed enrolling more than 26,000 students who are in different parts of this ‘Multiple-Entry, Multiple-Exit’ program. This year, we must aspire to reach 30,000 students so that within the next two-three years, IIT Madras should have a total of 50,000 enrolled as part of our higher education system. This will include 12,500 students in the campus and more than 37,000 in the online mode.”

Prof. V. Kamakoti added, “This year, we had lot of targets in mind. Targe No 1 was ‘Patent a Day’. We wanted 366 patents to be filed in the last one year. I am happy to state that we have crossed 370. The number of patents granted crossed 400. It is innovation and protection of our IPs that are going to make India a super power.”

Further, Prof. V. Kamakoti said, “For the next year, as a target, we are looking at 100 start-ups, or a start-up once in every three days. In December 2025 (Placement season), I want to have the pride that 20% of our graduating class are already CTOs. I am sure we are going in this direction. In Zanzibar, we are going to offer an MTech in Infrastructural Engineering. The Government has already given us more than 200 acres for setting up the IIT Madras Zanzibar permanent campus. Today, India’s GER (Gross Enrolment Ratio) is around 28% – the number of students who finish their school and come to higher education…. It is time that we all work towards increasing th GER to 50%, as envisaged in NEP 2020. In this direction, we have started 250+ Rural Interaction Centres since the majority of youth across India are in rural areas besides nine centres in the Northern part of Sri Lanka. Our target is 500 Rural Interaction Centres for this year.”

Presenting the student report, Mr. Aniket Singh Patel, outgoing Students General Secretary, said, “Student led initiatives have been instrumental in supporting the students on their academic journey. We have simplifed the peer support and other aid for the students. Our students won the General Championship after 12 years. The students skills were showcased during events like Saarang, the annual cultural technical festival of the Institute.”

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS

Several recognitions were presented during the occasion.

Dr. Shaligram Tiwari, Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, and Dr. Joe Thomas Karackattu, Associate Professor, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, were jointly selected for the ‘Srimathi Marti Annapurna Gurunath Award for Excellence in Teaching’ for 2023-24. This award is based on an endowment by IIT Madras alumnus, Prof. Marti Subrahmanyam, Stern School of Business, New York University.

The Institute Research and Development Awards (IRDA) were introduced in 2013-14 to encourage excellence in research.

The Early-Career Research and Development Award, which carries a grant of Rs 25 lakh, was presented to the following Professors:

Ø  Prof. Anubhab Roy – Department of Applied Mechanics and Biomedical Engineering

Ø  Prof. Tarak Kumar Patra – Department of Chemical Engineering

The Mid-Career Research and Development Award, which carries a grant of Rs 40 lakh, was presented to the following Professors:

Ø  Prof. Mohanasankar Sivaprakasam – Department of Electrical Engineering

Ø  Prof. Basavaraj Madivala Gurappa – Department of Chemical Engineering

The Distinguished Alumnus Awardees for 2024 are:

(Awardees who received the DAA in-person during Institute Day)

  1. Shri Giridhar Aramane, Defence Secretary, India [1986/MT/MS]
  2. Prof. S. Chandrasekar, Professor, Purdue University, USA [1981/BT/ME]
  3. Dr. Gankidi Madhusudhan Reddy, Outstanding Scientist and Director, DMRL, DRDO, India [1999/Ph.D/MT]
  4. Ms. Mili Majumdar, Managing Director, Green Building Council of India and Senior Vice President U.S. Green Building Council, India [1992/MT/CE]
  5. Shri Sankaran Naren, Executive Director and Chief Investment Officer for ICICI Prudential AMC Ltd, India [1987/BT/ME]
  6. Shri Venkat Rangan, CTO, Clari Inc, USA [1981/BT/ME]

(Awardees who were unable receive their awards in-person)

  1. Prof. Anima Anandkumar, Bren Professor at Caltech, Sr. Director of AI Research at NVIDIA[2004/BT/EE]
  2. Prof. Vinod Vaikuntanathan, Professor at MIT, Co-founder and Chief Cryptographer of Duality Technologies [2003/BT/CS]
  3. Dr. Unnikrishnan Nair, Director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre [2011/Ph.D/ME]
  4. Dr. Palanivel Veeramuthuvel, Project Director, Chandraayan 3, ISRO [2016/Ph.D/ME]
  5. Prof. Soundar Kumara, Allen, E & M., Pearce Professor, Pennsylvania State University [1977/MT/IM]
  6. Prof. Venkatraman Gopalan, Professor,  Pennsylvania State University [1989/BT/MT]
  7. Prof. Karan Sher Singh, Professor, University of Toronto, Weta Digital, Co-Founder at JALI Research, JanusVR. [1991/BT/CS]
  8. Dr. GDS Ramkumar, Head of Engineering, Apple Info Apps, Apple Inc [1990/BT/CS]

2021 DAA

  1. Shri Prasanna Ramaswamy, Musician Virginia, USA [1992/BT/OE] (came in person to receive the award this year)

The combined donations raised by Shaastra (annual technical fest of IITM) 2024 and Saarang (annual cultural fest of IITM) 2024 teams was Rs.3,00,000/- for this year. It was donated to:

  1. Deepam Trust, Chennai – Rs. 1,00,000/-
  2. The United Orphanage for the Disabled, Coimbatore – Rs. 1,00,000/-
  3. Ties That Bind Foundation, Chennai – Rs.1,00,000/-

The following awards/ honours were also presented during the event:

  1. Institute Blues – students
  2. Academic awards – students
  3. Excellence in teaching – faculty
  4. Non-Academic Employee Recognition Awards
  5. Outgoing officials who have completed their terms as HoD/Dean/Advisor etc.
  6. Outgoing students executive wing
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