IIT politics in Karnataka..

The Government continues on its spree to set up more IITs/IIMs. In the budget for 2015-16, 1 new IIT is announced in Karnataka and 2 IIMs in J&K and Andhra Pradesh. J&K of course to please the new political ally. It is amazing how little a say the elite budget technocrat team has in these matters given most come from these fancied institutions. It is felt India will be skilled with just opening new IIT/IIM in all corners of the country without thinking at all about faculty/teaching. For instance, each year the budget is silent on increasing incentives to become faculties to fill these places. Either they are ignorant or completely clueless about realities.

Anyways, the Karnataka decision has led to interesting politicisation on choice of location of the new IIT. The experts say Bangalore and the netas say North Karnataka. Sure BLR is a natural choice given location of IT industry but the city just does not have any space. Bangalore is already too congested and building another big place without any infra will only be a disappointment for students:

The Union Budget granted Karnataka an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT). The big question is: Where will it come up?

Educationists have different opinions, but politicians are looking at it as an opportunity to set right development imbalances dogging the state. But higher education department sources admitted the state government’s focus on striking a regional balance will not work. Sources, quoting the HRD ministry, said IITs cannot be set up to correct regional imbalances, ignoring prudence and long-term benefits. Therefore, experts are batting for Bengaluru.

The officials said the ministry has said the proposed site of 500 acres should be dispute-free, have good road and air connectivity, and industry and service sectors in the vicinity.

500 acres, good roads, air connectivity. lol..Good roads and Bangalore are just opposites.

It is amusing to see politicos treat IIT like some infra project or something:

Should it be in Chikaballapur, the native of Sir M Visvesvaraya or Raichur, the most backward district in the state. Or should it be in science and technology capital of India, Bengaluru or in the state’s acclaimed educational hubs – Mysuru and Dharwad.  The debate rages on in the political circles, a day after Centre sanctioned IIT for Karnataka, while the state government has chosen to play safe.

” We are happy that Karnataka has finally been gifted with a premier institute. It’s too early to talk about its location since we are yet to get into the details of the proposal. Whatever be the case, the state cabinet headed by chief minister Siddaramaiah will decide the location after taking various issues into consideration,” said higher education minister R V Deshpande.

Interestingly, during the last Lok Sabha elections in 2014, candidates of both the Congress and the BJP in different cities promised that they would bring the IIT to their constituency. “ We want the IIT to be set up in Dharwad considering that it is the educational hub of Karnataka and it has good connectivity,” said BJP MLA Aravind Bellad, a campaigning strategist for the party in Karnataka.

It is evident now that the location of the institute is set for another round of political battle with every district in the state eyeing for the premier institute. The rationale is that setting up of an IIT can catalyse the district’s development into a commercial and educational centre.

Since 2006, successive chief ministers have been lobbying for an IIT in Karnataka. Former chief minister B S Yeddyurappa had appealed to the Centre to set up an IIT in Karnataka, preferably in Shivamogga Chief minister Siddaramaiah has been keen for setting up the institute in his home district Mysuru on a suggestion from Bharat Ratna C N R Rao, source said.

Later former union law minister M Veerappa Moily wanted it the institute to be set up in Chikballapur, because it was located just about 25 km from the Kempegowda International Airport (BIA) and also he argued that it would be a fitting tribute to famous engineer Sir M Visvesvaraya’s native place.Deshpande however batted for Raichur considering that it was most backward district in the state and coming up the institute will help its growth.

Some MPS and MLA from Belgaum are demanding the IIT to be set up in Belgaum dubbing it as centre of technical education. Visvesvaraya Technological University (VTU) in Belgaum is playing an important role in Karnataka from 1998 with around 194 affiliated engineering colleges across Karnataka.

But sources in the higher education department said the state government’s focus on striking regional balance won’t work. The Union ministry of human resource development (HRD), in a meeting held recently has said the IIT cannot be set up to correct regional imbalance ignoring prudence and long-term benefits. Officials said the HRD ministry has conveyed to the states that the proposed sites should have better connectivity, air connectivity in plain areas, and that there should be industry and service sector units around the location. The HRD ministry also wants 500 acres of dispute-free land for setting up the IIT.

As if all students will just fly and not need another avenues for transport. I mean where are our discussions headed really. Engineering institutes mushroom across Karnataka and Maharashtra who have somehow built an image of good avenues for education. This leads to students flocking to these states from all across the country.

And guess who has benefited from this? Politicians of course. Most are promoters of several private engineering/management colleges and become avenue for making enormous amount of money in a legal and “benefiting society” way.

The central government should ensure these institutes do not become political ploys to appease factions. These institutes shoud be set up so that students gain not political constituencies. Sadly, it is the second option which is winning. Without putting any mind to training high quality faculty, we are just mindlessly creating new IIT/IIM and destroying whatever we have created in the process.

14 Responses to “IIT politics in Karnataka..”

  1. diarystanam11x2 Says:

    It has become a new fad to announce new IIMs and IITs in the name of quality education available to many students. As you pointed out there is a severe shortage of faculty in many of the already existing IITs and IIMs.

  2. Dr. Sreenivasa R. L Says:

    A IIT for Karnataka state is necessary, because to get undergraduate education in premier institutes, particularly in engineering our state students at present going awy from state and they are finding many hardships. Even very small state like Goa got it. So Karnataka as a one of the big state in India deserves IIT. In my openion IIT should be established either in or around Bangalore, which is ideal place.

  3. praveen Says:

    IIT should be in north K’taka….we cannot entertain opinions of those who does not know anything abt K’taka. They have come to Bangalore and settled here…..they want IIT near their home….better let them keep quite. K’taka has already decided, that it should be anywhere in N.K’taka……certainly not in Bangalore……

  4. T.Veeramahantesh Swamy Says:

    There was one article dating somewhere in 2013, that IITs established in Tier 2 cities have failed, mainly because of not having good transport connectivity to the rest of world. In my opinion next to Bengaluru, whether any individual likes or not it is Dharwad district which is moving forward in all the fronts. It also has the good geographical location between IIT Mumbai and IIT Chennai. Looking into the merits of the Dharwad district let IIT be settling down in Dharwad. May be let the Central govt also take care of creating good faculty for all IITs.

  5. apkrishna Says:

    IIT at Dharwad or Mysore is OK. But amused to see no mention of Mangalore (or Dakshina Kannada) which is actually front runner in education, With NITK Suratkal, Mangalore University, MIT Manipal and more than dozens of Excellent Engineering Colleges, academically committed first grade colleges Mangalore certainly a valid reason to claim for IIT.

    It has road and air connectivity with all parts of India. Kerala also gets benefitted if IIT comes in Mangalore. For so many years, year after year, Dakshina Kannada & Udupi districts sharing top in PUC results which only shows the academic atmosphere of the region.

    In setting up of IIT, one has to consider the climate of the region and infrastructure availability – in both these counts Mangalore gets full score. One side it has excellent beach and other side lush green western ghat range, streams and rivers with serene atmosphere to grow academically. Our people representatives should raise their opinion in favour of Dakshina Kannada/Udupi district so as to get IIT for the benefit of IIT to become really like MIT of USA.

  6. siddhu Says:

    IIT should be in North karnataka especially in dharwad not in bangalore. All IT company are thr in bangalore. If IIT comes in DWD thr will be improvement in North karnataka

  7. santosh Says:

    IIT should come in the outskirts of Bangalore.Being an IT capital Bangalore should have an IIT. It will attract the best faculty into it if it is in bangalore which will benefit the students.

  8. Dr Giriyappa Kollannavar Says:

    IIT must be set up in Bagalkot district which most backward in terms of education and economics development. Many people migrate from this district for works which shows the degree of backwardness. I strongly support that new IIT must be set up in Bagalkot to bring even development. The pity is that no political leader from this district is voicing to bring prestigious institute for the district.

  9. brand Says:

    IIT Should be setup in North Kranataka and atleast not in Bangalore which has always lobbyed to get lion share in all developmental activties.

  10. Anil Says:

    IIT should come in the outskirts of Bangalore especially near to BIAL is much advisable .Being an IT capital Bangalore, if they set IIT in bangalore that will become back bone to south Karnataka . to be frank north Karnataka is locations are not feasible to set IIT. dear all & dear Chief minister dont try spoil by putting IIt location in mysore. being backward district pl considered chikkaballpaur district.

  11. Rajeev Niroola Says:

    IIT Karnataka shall be as close to Bangalore, so as to attract best teachers and students.

  12. NARAHARI Varahamurti Says:

    My opinion is that, Dharwad is an ideal location because of its overnight access to Pune, Bangalore, Mumbai and Hyderabad too. There is an airport in the twin city which has connectivity to Mumbai and Bangalore. In the future, we can see connecting Hubli with other cities via Mumbai, Pune and Bangalore. Apart from this, there is an excellent National Highway piercing through the city. Dharwad is a REAL CULTURAL HUB for Hindustani Sangeet (where is Bangalore or any south Karnataka towns have typical Karnataka sangeet). Today’s talent pool in the corridor of Hubli-Dharwad-Belgaum is a real boost to infrastructure of IIT at Dharwad. Dharwad and Hubi also have big industrial belt which will get philip with IIT coming in. Dharwad is brimming with Lush greenery motivating not only the teaching staff but also the students to excel. So, with all the above plus points, I do now know why Karnataka Govt. is delaying the decision. Go ahead guys, its a great city.

  13. Ramyaa Prakash Says:

    IIT has to be setup in North Karnataka because it has always remained backward in terms of facilities. Bengaluru is crowded and already it has become International Capital of India. Now only few % of Kannadigas and Kannadathis reside in bengaluru.
    But recently read in newspapers that IIT will be setup near Nanjangud Road, Mysuru. If this really happens, we Mysurians must not let other state ppl to spoil Mysuru as they did in Bengaluru.

  14. 9apps install Says:

    Great post. I am going through some of these issues as well..

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