Distinguished Alumnus Award - 2001

Arvind Kumar Gupta (BT/EE/1975)

In Recognition of his Outstanding Contributions in Developing Low-Cost Science-Base Teaching Aids for Children and thus doing Great Service to Humanity at Large.
Shri Arvind Kumar Gupta, after graduating from IIT Kanpur in 1975, joined TELCO, Pune and worked there for a few years. In 1978, he took one year’s study leave from TELCO to work with the grassroot village level science teaching programme for children in the tribal district of Hoshangabad, Madhya Pradesh. While working in Hoshangabad, he developed many useful low-cost teaching/science teaching aids using locally available materials. The possibilities of using ordinary things for doing science and recycling modern junk into joyous products appealed immensely to children. Shri Gupta’s first book “Matchstick Models and other Science Experiments” was translated into thirteen Indian languages by various popular Science groups and sold more than half a million copies. His science models and toys were widely featured in daily newspapers and magazines across the country. Since then he has written ten books and translated over 45 books on science, environment and education. He has conducted science workshops for children and teachers in over twelve hundred schools across the country. Shri Arvind Gupta has presented over seventy TV programmes on science based fun activities, innovative toys and teaching aids on the national television. These films have been made by the NCERT and the UGC countrywide classroom. He was also featured as the Green Guru on the popular TV programme titled “Living on the Edge”.

Shri Arvind Gupta’s outstanding contribution in designing science teaching aids for young children has been recognized by several international organisations such as UNESCO, UNICEF, International Toy Research Association, Halmstad University, Boston Science Center, MIT (Media Lab), Walt Disney Imagineering and Research, Auhof Rehabilitation Centre, Hilpolstien, Germany, and the International Play Association, Finland. As a UNESCO consultant on science education he has been invited to share his experiences on science teaching with teachers of several developing countries. He has been actively associated with the Bombay Natural History Society, Conservation Society of Delhi, Spastic Society of North India, and the Bharat Gyan Vigyan Samiti. He is an Advisor to National Book Trust on popular science books. He has received several awards for his outstanding contributions. These include Eklavya Award (1982), the inaugural National Award for Science Popularisation amongst Children by DST (1988), Hari Bhau Mote Award of Marathi Vigyan Parishad (1988), a special award given by National Association for the Blind for designing teaching aids for pre-school blind children (1991), Granthali award for his book Khel (1992), Ruchi Ram Sahni Award for science popularization (1993) and the Hari Om Ashram Award by the UGC (1995).

The Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur is proud of the achievements of Shri Arvind Gupta. In recognition of his outstanding and seminal contributions in developing low-cost science-base teaching aids for young children and thus doing a great service to humanity at large, the Institute hereby confers upon Shri Arvind Gupta its Distinguished Alumnus Award.