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IIT Mandi Marks 15th Foundation Day with a Bold Vision for the Future

Indian Institute of Technology Mandi commemorated its 15th Foundation Day on 27th February 2024, with esteemed guests and dignitaries gracing the occasion. Dr. Samir V. Kamat, Secretary DD (R&D) and Chairman Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO), honored the event as the Chief Guest, along with Shri G. A. Srinivasa Murthy, DS and Director, Defence Research & Development Laboratory (DRDL), and Shri Manoj Jain, Director R&D, Bharat Electronics Limited, attended as Guests of Honor. The event also saw the presence of Prof. Laxmidhar Behera, Director of IIT Mandi, along with faculty, students, and staff members. While Lt. Gen. K. J. S. Dhillon, Chairman, Board of Governors, IIT Mandi, presided over the event virtually.


Hon’ble Chief Guest, Dr. Samir V. Kamat, Secretary DD (R&D) and Chairman, DRDO, while congratulating IIT Mandi on its 15th anniversary, said, “Amidst the serene Himalayan backdrop, taking  Prime Minister’s vision to be a world leader by 2047 IIT Mandi is rapidly evolving into technological landscape. The collaboration between DRDO and academia is vital for research and development, paving the path for a leader in defense in this constantly evolving technological development.”


Dr. Kamat further added, “Encouraging student involvement in R&D is key to fostering a culture of innovation. Leveraging engineering talent is imperative for our transition to a developed economy. It is up to all of us to work together and achieve the vision of our Hon’ble PM of becoming a developed country by 2047.”


Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Laxmidhar Behera, Director, IIT Mandi, said, “The journey of IIT Mandi has been marked by remarkable growth, innovation, and academic excellence, culminating in our Foundation Day celebrations. As we commemorate this occasion, we honor the tireless efforts of our faculty, staff, and students, whose dedication has been instrumental in shaping our institution into what it is today. Our commitment to excellence is reflected in our state-of-the-art infrastructure, which spans 18 acres and encompasses academic and administrative facilities, student and faculty housing, laboratories, libraries, and sports complexes. Furthermore, our Green Committee’s proactive efforts in environmental conservation have earned us accolades such as the prestigious ‘Green University’ award at COP 28.”


Emphasizing the Institute’s future development plans, Prof. Behera stated, “We have ambitious plans to expand our faculty and student strength, with a focus on inclusivity and accessibility. Our ongoing projects, such as the construction of new hostels, academic blocks, and sports facilities, underscore our commitment to providing a conducive learning environment for all.”


During his virtual address, (Retd.) Lt. Gen. K. J. S. Dhillon, Chairman, Board of Governor, IIT Mandi, conveyed his heartfelt congratulations, emphasizing the significance of the achievements by adding, “Your dedication and achievements not only reflect your personal excellence but also serve as a beacon of inspiration for others to aspire towards greatness.”


While addressing the students, Guest of Honour, Shri Manoj Jain, Director R&D, Bharat Electronics Limited, said, “The primary aim of an educational institute is to provide education, but equally important is leveraging the rich knowledge of students and faculty to fuel versatile growth in the industry. IITs excel in creating world-class talent, and I urge all students to adapt themselves to contribute to the betterment of our country. I am pleased that IIT Mandi has brought together stakeholders from the government (DRDO), industry (BEL), and academia (IIT Mandi) – a perfect combination to drive success from basic ideas to innovation and ultimately develop final products for the advancement of our nation.”


While speaking, Guest of Honour, Shri G. A. Srinivasa Murthy, DS and Director, Defence Research & Development Laboratory, said, “I am honored to participate in the festivities commemorating IIT Mandi’s 15th Foundation Day. The cutting-edge facilities available at IIT Mandi, spanning from the Advanced Materials Research Centre to the Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, and from the Centre for Design & Fabrication of Electronic Devices to the Indian Knowledge System and Mental Health Applications Centre, among others, vividly underscore the Institute’s dedication to innovation and excellence. To all the talented researchers and innovators, I extend a sincere invitation to explore potential research collaborations with the Defence Research & Development Laboratory. It is our paramount duty to serve our nation and propel research forward. I implore you all to unite in our mission to establish India as a frontrunner in global technology leadership.”

 In the calendar year of 2023, IIT Mandi secured significant external funding through 63 sponsored projects totaling over Rs. 29.62 crores and 47 consultancy projects amounting to over Rs. 2.21 crores. The Institute’s proactive engagement in green initiatives earned it the prestigious Green University Award at COP-28.

On the outreach front, IIT Mandi organized numerous national and international seminars, conferences, and workshops, facilitating knowledge exchange and collaboration among scholars, researchers, and professionals. Events like ICDECP’23, the Annual Conference on ‘DNA IN BIOX 2023’, Mind Brain and Consciousness Conference, and workshop on ‘Doing Ethnography’ exemplify the Institute’s commitment to interdisciplinary dialogue and intellectual exchange.

IIT Mandi has expanded its global presence through academic exchange programs, joint research initiatives, and industry partnerships, fostering collaboration with esteemed institutions worldwide.

The Centre for Continuing Education is playing a pivotal role in extending the Institute’s impact beyond academia, offering a diverse array of educational opportunities, and fostering lifelong learning within the regional community. Along with this, the Technology Business Incubator, IIT Mandi Catalyst, is serving as a dynamic hub for nurturing entrepreneurship and innovation, providing startups with essential support services, funding opportunities, and industry partnerships to thrive in the competitive landscape.

With these achievements, in the past 15 years, IIT Mandi has emerged as a beacon of excellence in education, research, and innovation, laying a solid foundation for continued growth and impact in the years to come.

History of the Institute

On 24th February 2009, the foundation stone of IIT Mandi was laid at Kamand, signifying the establishment of its permanent campus. The first batch of students embarked on their academic journey in July 2009, with classes commencing on 27th July 2009 at a transit campus. This marked the beginning of IIT Mandi’s educational legacy. Then, in September 2012, the inaugural cohort of students transitioned to the Kamand campus, representing a significant milestone in the institute’s development and growth.

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