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Despite the pandemic, IIT Madras witnesses a year of major developments

Despite the pandemic, IIT Madras witnesses a year of major developments


  1.  Highlights included inauguration of a Rs 1,000-crore satellite campus called ‘Discovery Campus’
  2.  The institute won the No. 1 ranking in NIRF ranking 2021

The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras witnessed major developments in the year 2021. Here are the top 10 highlights of the year.

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated IIT Madras’ ‘Discovery Campus’ on February 14

The satellite campus of IIT Madras, set up at a cost of Rs 1,000 crore, hosts state-of-the-art standalone research centres with large dedicated facilities. It has its own support infrastructure like hostels for the research scholars and fellows, common instrumentation laboratories, and conference facilities, among other amenities. Two research centres are already coming up at Discovery Campus. The first one is the National Technology Centre for Ports, Waterways and Coasts (NTCPWC), which is funded by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, Government of India. It will house the country’s first large ‘Shallow Water Basin’ facility for coastal and estuarine research and industrial applications. And the other is the research centre to come up in the Discovery Campus is the ‘Solid Propellant Combustion Modelling Facility’ of the Centre of Propulsion Technology, which is funded by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).

A win at NIRF rankings

IIT Madras, won the top honours in National Institutional Rankings Framework (NIRF) this year, emerging as the undisputed leader in education in the country. The results of NIRF 2021 were announced on September 9 by Dharmendra Pradhan, education minister, government of India.

IIT Madras was ranked as the number one institute in India in both ‘Overall’ and ‘Engineering’ categories in NIRF 2021. It bagged the top rank in ‘Overall’ category for the third consecutive year and No. 1 in ‘Engineering’ category for the sixth consecutive year.

In the newly-launched category of ‘Research Institutions,’ IIT Madras was Ranked No. 2 in the country, behind the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru.

The 2021-Convocation

A total of 1,962 students graduated during the 58th convocation of Indian Institute of Technology Madras, which was held virtually on November 20. As many as 2,425 degrees (including joint and dual degrees) were awarded to students on the occasion. This includes the highest number of PhDs awarded in an academic year – 392, which includes PhDs, joint degree Ph.Ds with foreign institutions and dual degree PhDs.

The chief guest was Olympic medallist and Badminton World Champion P.V Sindhu, Dhyan Chand, Khel Ratna and Padma Bhushan Awardee.

COVID-19 related efforts

The institute undertook several research in various areas of COVID-19 research including:

  1. Breath patterns and risk of infection.
  2. High transmission potential of Coronavirus.
  3. Blockchain-based Healthcare Information Systems for mobile phone apps.
  4. Air sanitisation technologies to prevent spread of Coronavirus, Tuberculosis.

In addition, IIT Madras alumni in India and abroad donated more than USD 2 million towards COVID relief efforts in India.

IIT Madras launched the first tech magazine

IIT Madras launched a tech magazine, which was the first-of-its-kind to be published by an Indian educational institution called ‘IIT Madras Shaastra,’ this science, technology and innovation magazine addresses a mass audience and articulates not just Indian but global trends.

6. ‘Women Leading IITM’ Endowment Fund with a USD 2 million Corpus

IIT Madras launched the ‘Women Leading IITM’ (WLI) programme to boost women leadership in science and technology.

The programme will make grants each year to accelerate women technologists’ careers as well as provide a supportive environment for women to thrive at IIT Madras. The endowment fund aims to grant Rs 70 lakh for various initiatives.

‘Institute Advisory Board’ to Guide Institute on Best Global Practices

IIT Madras established an ‘Institute Advisory Board’ (IAB) comprising eminent alumni and well-wishers from across the world. The board will provide guidance to the institute on the best global practices followed by renowned international institutions, enabling it to emerge as one of the top educational and research institutions in the world. The distinguished members are drawn from various fields including business, academia and philanthropy.


IIT Madras developed India’s first indigenous motorized wheelchair vehicle that can be used not only on roads but even on uneven terrains.

Called ‘NeoBolt’, it has a maximum speed of 25 kmph and travels up to 25 km per charge. It empowers wheelchair users with a convenient, safe and low-cost mode of outdoor mobility when compared to cars, auto rickshaws or modified scooters. NeoBolt is powered by a lithium-ion battery.

IIT Madras launched two diplomas in programming and data science for students, working professionals and job seekers

The institute launched two online diploma courses in programming and data science. The diplomas are open to students, working professionals, and job seekers who have completed at least two years of their undergraduate education in any discipline through any mode.

IIT Madras sees a historic high in job offers in phase-I of campus placements

IIT Madras recorded a historic high in job offers received during phase-I of its campus placements for the academic year 2021-22.As many as 73% of students who opted for campus placements during 2021-22 have received job offers at the end of phase I. Phase II of placements will begin in the second half of January 2022.

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