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IITs unsure of rural plan’s execution

Education NewsWith zero funding and no direction, the IITs do not know how to bring about a transformational change in rural India.

IIT Hyderabad is adopting about two to three villages and has already made visits to two: Utharpally and Aliyabad. IIT-H faculty described one of the villages as an administrative failure with no one from the official government machinery present in the village.

“In Aliyabad, the sarpanch was not there. He lives in the city and visits the village once in a while. None of the officials, who are supposed to be there, were present. The village is in a pathetic condition. There are no roads, houses are kuchcha, there is no way to drain out waste water. It is a total administrative failure. And this is a village that apparently won some model village award in 2007,” said Dr T. Shashidhar, assistant professor of civil engineering at IIT-H and coordinator of the Unnat Bharat programme.

But the Union HRD Ministry has so far failed to explain to IITs what it immediately wants them to do with the villages they adopted. The main issue is funding. “Costs will be met from ongoing projects and by converging available resources, to begin with,”the Unnat Bharat Abhiyan framework says.

“Till now, the HRD Ministry is also not clear on what they want us to do and what they want to achieve though they have plans to do it in a big way. There is no clear direction. All IITs are feeling the same way. Till now there is no funding from the ministry. So we are just using established technology,” a senior IIT-H faculty member said.

Source: Deccan Chronicle

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