Education hub Pune has lost the race for the first IIM in the state. State Education Minister Vinod Tawde Wednesday announced in the Legislative Council that the first IIM in Maharashtra would come up in Nagpur.
He has, however, promised to give Pune the next IIM (Indian Institute of Management) or an equivalent institute. “Pune is a known seat of education and the next IIM or an equivalent institute will come up in the city. This government aims at equitable growth of all regions,” the BJP minister said explaining the decision.
An IIM in Pune was one of the promises the BJP made when the party was campaigning for the Lok Sabha elections. Aurangabad was also in contention for an IIM but Nagpur beat the rest in allocating land and sending a proposal to the Union HRD Ministry.
Two hundred acres have been allotted in project area of MIHAN (Multi-modal International Cargo Hub and Airport at Nagpur) for setting up the IIM but the first academic session of the new IIM is likely to start at Visveswaraya National Institute of Technology (VNIT) next year. This arrangement will continue till the IIM building is built on the allotted land.
According to sources, Prime Minister Narendra Modi may visit next month to lay the foundation stone of the institute.
Shiv Sena MLC Neelam Gorhe welcomed the move but said Pune already has the right “ecosytem” for an IIM-like institute. “It is a good beginning and we hope Pune will be considered for the next IIM-like institution,” she said.
According to educationalist Arun Nigvekar, in an era of e-learning, the location of the institute does not matter. “Cities like Pune and Mumbai have a plethora of institutions. An IIM in Nagpur would give a boost to its growth,” he said.