When I came to Kanpur first to join
as the Director of the Institute, almost everybody I
met in Kanpur asked me..if I had wanted to commit professional
suicide, I did not at all worry about this because I
was no longer myself but an instrument of a historical
process" (Extracts from the
convocation address given by Dr. P.K. Kelkar on 1981
May 17). The institute was registered under Registration
of Society Act XXI of 1860 on 2nd November, 1959.
Soon after the five IITs were set up, Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru had realized that to keep pace with the ever changing world of science and technology, it is necessary to collaborate closely with the outside world. The Kanpur Indo-American Programme (1962-1972) at IIT-Kanpur was a stride in this direction. During the period 1962-72, the Institute received technical assistance under KIAP from a consortium of nine leading Institutions of U.S.A. Under the program, faculty members from these Institutions assisted the Institute in the setting up of the academic programs and development of laboratories for instruction as well as research.
Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur
is one of the premier institutions established by the
Government of India. The aim of the Institute is to
provide meaningful education, to conduct original research
of the highest standard and to provide leadership in
technological innovation for the industrial growth of
the country. The Institute began functioning in the
borrowed building of Harcourt Butler Technological Institute
in 1959 with 100 students and a small faculty. The Institute
now has its own sprawling residential
campus, about 2255 undergraduate and 1476 postgraduate
students, 309 faculty and more than 900 supporting staff.
The combined record of its past and present faculty
and students along with the alumni spread across the
world is awe-inspiring. With the path-breaking innovations
in both its curriculum and research, the Institute is
rapidly gaining a legendary reputation.
IIT-Kanpur is located on the Grand Trunk Road, 15 km west of Kanpur City and measures close to 420 hectares. This land was gifted by the Government of Uttar Pradesh in 1960 and by March 1963 the Institute had moved to its current location. If someone had visited it then, he/she would have seen a standing crop, acacia woods, a long winding line of stately mango trees, flocks of peafowl and a conventional country side scene of India. The residential campus is planned and landscaped with a hope for environmental freedom. Halls of residence, faculty and staff houses and community buildings surround the central academic area to provide flexibility in movement and communication. The person who brought this mammoth transformation was Mr.Achyut Kanvinde, a Delhi-based architect. Since the beginning, the Institute has attracted scholars from across the country. The rich cultural diversity of India is reflected in the campus activities of IIT-K as well.
From its very inception, IIT Kanpur
has been striving to develop itself into an institution
of excellence in education and research in consonance
with the contemporary and future needs of India. In
meeting this challenge, the Institute has always been
making special efforts to recruit talented faculty on
a world-wide basis and to admit brilliant students from
all over the country by a careful selection process.
Continuous efforts have been made to provide the faculty
with well-equipped facilities to enable them to participate
in national endeavors in Science
and Technology in a major way. In addition to offering
formal Undergraduate and Post-graduate Programs, the
Institute has been involved in Continuing Education
and Research & Development in areas of value to
both the Industry and the Government. In a very short
span, the Institute has attained recognition as a major
centre of learning in Engineering, Science and several
Inter-disciplinary Areas. The Institute has been served
by illustrious Directors.
Not only, has the Institute acted as the breeding ground
for ideas and talent, it also has recognised and honoured