IIT Madras celebrates 60 years of Academic Excellence, Pioneering Research and Innovation

Chennai: Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) celebrated 60 years of Academic Excellence, Pioneering Research, and Innovation on Wednesday (31st July 2019) with an event on campus in which achievements of the last six decades were remembered with Faculty, Staff, students, alumni and distinguished guests.

The Institute marked the Diamond Jubilee year by becoming the top ranked engineering institute in India for four consecutive years as well as emerging as the ‘Best Educational Institution’ in Overall Category this year in the NIRF Rankings of the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Govt. of India. The collective contribution of alumni, faculty and students over the past six decades has driven the rise of the Institute to become a globally recognized education centre of repute.

Addressing the Diamond Jubilee celebrations at IIT Madras Campus on Wednesday, Ms. Karin Stoll, Consul General, German Consulate, Chennai, said, “The Federal Republic of Germany supported IIT Madras into becoming one of the premier institutions in the country. This was one of the largest technical cooperation projects taken up by Germany abroad. The first generation of Indian faculty received training in Germany through scholarships.”

Further Ms. Karin Stoll added, “The Indo-German Centre for Sustainability (IGCS) at IIT Madras is a particular asset to face the big challenges of our time. It is a platform to enhance cooperation among Indian and German scientists in the area of Sustainability and Growth. Today, we are not talking about only Mechanical Engineering but Artificial Intelligence and Internet of Things (IoT) and Sustainability. IIT Madras also has academic agreements with 35 German Universities. I wish the IIT Madras, on this occasion, all the best for years to come.”

IIT Madras is known nationally and internationally for excellence in Technical Education, Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Research besides Industrial and Educational Consultancy. Its strengths include highly motivated and talented students, qualified and dedicated faculty and well-trained technical and administrative supporting staff.

Delivering the welcome address, Prof Bhaskar Ramamurthi, Director, IIT Madras, said, “This is a day for us to take stock and remember the wonderful 60 years this institution has gone through. On all counts, the Institute in on an exciting path. Our Alumni have shown not only in their professional disciplines but in so many other ways that they excel. This is an occasion for alumni to reconnect with each other and with the Institute.”

Former Directors of IIT Madras Prof. M.S. Ananth and Prof R. Natarajan were honoured on the occasion. Prof Bhaskar Ramamurthi, also felicitated the members of the Class of 1964, the very first batch to pass out of IIT Madras.

Giving an Alumnus view of IIT Madras, Distinguished Alumnus Awardee Mr. Kris Gopalakrishnan, Co-founder of Infosys and Chairman of Axilor Ventures, said, “While doing my M.Sc. at IIT Madras, I was introduced to computers. I took a course in Fortran (Programming language) and, as they say, the rest is history. I want to thank all the teachers, staff and all the people who have built this great institution. Its role in transforming and building institutions across the world, across the industry, academic and Government stands testimony to the impact of this Institution.”

The celebrations featured a fashion show called ‘Woven Threads – 60 years of student fashion’ in which the current students showcased the evolution of campus student fashion during the past sixty years. Prof R. Nagarajan, Professor In-Charge, Heritage Centre, IIT Madras, spoke about ‘Gems of Campastimes,’ the student publication. A presentation on the many ‘Firsts’ of IIT Madras, presented by the Heritage Centre, IIT Madras brought out important developments such as the first women students to graduate from IIT Madras, the first research scholars and so on.

Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Mahesh Panchagnula, Dean (International and Alumni Relations), IIT Madras, remarked, “We are going to start an archive that will be home to our own cherished history in a formal way. We look forward to seeing it come online very soon.”

On 13th July 2019, alumni of IIT Madras spread across the globe came together to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of the Institute in their respective cities. Ms. Shuba Kumar, President, IIT Madras Alumni Association, informed, “As many as 3,600 alumni got together in 60 cities across the world, from Seattle to Sydney, to celebrate 60 years of IIT Madras. Celebrations were held in, among other places, in North America, India, South East Asia and Australia.”

Some of the objectives and targets of IIT Madras in the years to come include:

Ø To be known as the best educational research institute in the country in all the areas we are engaged in

Ø To produce M.S. and Ph.D. graduates with high employer reputation

Ø To make significant contributions to the technology needs of the nation

Ø To publish a large fraction of papers in top journals where peers in the top 50 universities

Ø To nurture the unique strength of IIT Madras in research and development leading to technologies with immediate societal value (water, energy, housing, healthcare, education, etc.)