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IIT kgp alumnus speaks to Dr Sabhlok, IAS

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Dear Dr Sabhlok,

I have received the enclosed from Mr. Charu Dutt,who is an IIT KGP alumnus
and who was the one who had asked you for your opinion of our Institute
after you visited me here a few weeks ago.  I would appreciate it if this
was posted at India Policy.   My students are all unanimously disturbed by
what they read on the Internet from you after your visit.  We believed that
we invited you to talk about your research and that you were an excellent
guest and we were at least adequate hosts while you were here.   I repeat
that youn are welcome to return as a guest to obtain for yourself a less
hastily gathered point of  view.


Subroto Roy.
-----Original Message-----
From: Charu datt <charuX@lucent.com>
To: Dr.SubrotoRoy <sroy@vgsom>
Cc: Sanjeev Sabhlok <sanjeev@sabhlokcity.com>
Date: Wednesday, March 08, 2000 7:31 AM
Subject: Re: Fw: Letter to Dr. Sabhlok, IAS, on his views on IIT Kgp

>Dear Subroto,
>I should apologize for this public airing of a discussion I
>had intended to be private- I forgot to set the reply address
>to go to Sanjeev privately, rather than to the whole group on
>a question of sanjeev's opinion, arising from my curiosity.
>I'm not surprised at the impressions of decay that IIT-kgp
>seems to produce among casual visitors- i felt the same thing
>when i first got there [more years ago than i care to remember],
>and it is true [or at least was then] that the buildings and campus
>do not give off that look of grandeur that we expect from a modern
>institution of higher learning- especially one of such [supposed]
>repute. I remember the unimaginative [but utilitarian] architecture
>of most of the buildings, the peeling and moss specked whitewash,
>not something to inspire awe as does the [sometimes entirely impractical]
>modern architecture of iit-d or the sheer size of the campus at iit-m,
>or looking further, the grandeur of tradition conveyed by the
>pseudo-classical architecture of older universities.
>what is not evident is the incredible energy and brilliance of some of
>the students i came to know there [i know, there are smart people
>everywhere but the sheer concentration is something i have never
>seem matched]. the isolation of the institution in a relatively poor rural
>area next to a small railway town produced it's own set of
>characteristics- some students thrived on the isolation and the inward
>focus it fostered and some ended up with stunted and limited
>Among the faculty, i remember meeting some
>incredibly brilliant  and dedicated people who were wonderful teachers-
>world class in every way- or better, given some the obstacles of the
>i also recall dealing with uninterested mediocrities that made me dread the
>idea of ever entering the teaching profession for fear of becoming like
>Also there were all kinds of people in between- in many ways not all that
>different from the range of faculty in many univerities all over the world.
>I don't know what the current generation of faculty is like. in my time,
>most of the new/replacement faculty was internally generated
>[iit kgp degree recipients] and on balance this was a negative.
>overall, i believe the rural location of the institute is a disadvantage.
>in my time the isolation would sometimes deprive the denizens of the campus
>the real world relevance and perspective that i belive is an essential part
>of any education.
>i'm sure the place has changed in many ways.
>my question to sanjeev was more a question of how the
>students reacted to a political and economic presentation
>in the technical-academic setting that i remembered to be so
>isolated and non-politically focussed.
>that question remains un-answered.
>"Dr.SubrotoRoy" wrote:
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Dr.SubrotoRoy <sroy@vgsom.iitkgp.ernet.in>
>> >Dear Dr Sabhlok,
>> >
>> >I have to protest your public remarks about IIT Kharagpur as being
>> >ill thought out.
>> >
>> >">At the VGSOM, IIT, Kharagpur, I spoke on a bunch of issues, apart from
>> >this
>> >>thing of transparency. This current talk (formal) was at Shillong last
>> >week.
>> >
>> >
>> >>My quick assessment: Your alma-mater is dying."
>> >
>> >-- Your quick assessment as an invited guest for a talk here is far from
>> >accurate.   IIT Kharagpur is NOT dying.   There are a lot of things
>> >here as with other IIT as with all other institutions in India or
>> elsewhere,
>> >but there are many positive trends of change.   Everyone of us may need
>> >look within and change what we can as individuals first.
>> >

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