New Delhi: The best known technology institutes of India – Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) – enjoy good reputation worldwide for the quality of its teaching and its graduates. However, recently they have been losing their shine for some time.

IITs need to re-sharpen their academic edge!
IITs need to re-sharpen their academic edge!

Mr. Ved Prakash, the Chairman of the University Grants Commission (UGC), have commented that traditional universities are the worthier recipients of funding than the IITs which are just ‘glorified engineering colleges’. Many do not agree.

Over the last 50 years, IITs have attained the ‘elite’ status because of its focus on research, quality of its students and faculty members, and good governance, which is considerably less bureaucratic than traditional universities.

But now, inadequate funding has resulted in the undoing of IITs. Lack of availability of superior-quality faculty members to replace the retiring members, and more attractive opportunities in the private sectors is making it difficult for the IITs to fill up its vacancies adequately.

Political issues are also plaguing IITs now as allegations are being made in interference in appointment of IIT directors, location of new IITs are being debated and reservation policies are constantly under the scanner.

Though, the number of IITs has been increased to seventeen, little is being done to maintain the overall quality of the Brand IIT. Over-exapansion, some to remote places, has resulted in the neglect of providing intellectual and infrastructural facilities in the currently operational IITs, which are in urgent need of basics like laboratories and residences.

It is high time that the IITs should be adequately funded to keep it sharp and going.

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