On his way to take charge as the director of the newly-formed IIT-Bhilai, Professor Rajat Moona said he is aware of the battle of perception that he will be fighting in the beginning.
“Any new IIT will take time to establish. Naturally comparisons with older IITs are due but I don’t see them as competing institutes but complementary ones. The perception problem will remain in the beginning and I am hoping the time lapse to overcome is short,” said Moona.
Moona is the current director of Pune-based Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC). A few days away from his exit from C-DAC, where many important national projects were commissioned and executed under his leadership, Moona said the National Super Computer Mission (NSCM) and Electoral Roll Management Systems were the most prestigious projects.
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“The NSCM is worth Rs 4,500 crore and we are already in execution stage. Several supercomputers will soon be rolled out within educational institutes and it is a big achievement for us. We have also developed and sold at least 50 Param Shawak, which provides affordable super computing for industry and small organisations,” he said.
Currently, we are executing ‘Electronically transmitted postal ballot system’ for defence forces. “It is a huge project and the first time we tried it was during the Puducherry by-elections. Now, it will be used for five Assembly elections. For the first time, our defence personnel is able to log in real time, print ballots and send it by post. Though we have the technical bandwidth to do a completely electronic ballot but due to security reasons, it is on hold,” he said.
Meanwhile, talking about his upcoming responsibility, Moona said he is aware of the pressure of performance on IIT students and said he would work to ease the pressure.
An alumnus of IIT-Kanpur, where he also worked as a professor for a long period, Moona said he believes in celebrating failures. “The problem in our society is that we don’t know how to fail. Success is what we look for. We have failed to honour our failures. I have been in research for many years and I understand the value of failure as each failed attempt teaches me something new. Rather than evaluating people on objective criteria, I think we need to see them as a whole,” he said.