Stories

The Good, The Bad and The Unknown

The Good, The Bad and The Unknown

Another IITian turns author. And Raj Tilak Roushan is quite an unusual IITian. An award-winning police officer, RTR, as he is known, spent five years in the private sector, both in India and abroad, after graduating from IIT Kharagpur, then got tired of "working to make rich people richer", and joined the IPS. The story of his extraordinary work in Palghar, Maharashtra, in fighting child trafficking, involving both deep data analysis and sensitising his force ("think of every child missing as a child from your own family") is here The stories in RTR's book are police procedurals. Most of them,…
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The Incredible 1970s and Spring Fest

The Incredible 1970s and Spring Fest

Colourful festoons, huge sponsor banners and flags decked up the entire campus last weekend. Makeshift ‘pandals’ popped up and an air of festivity hung around. Students scurried across different venues. They had spent sleepless nights for weeks. It was that time of the year when students from all over India flocked to the campus for one of the most outstanding college fests in south Asia – the Spring Fest. This year, Spring Fest saw a mini galaxy descend on campus. Around 150 alumni from the Batch of 1970 came back to their alma mater to celebrate their 50th graduation anniversary.…
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The many ways of ‘giving’

The many ways of ‘giving’

A warm smile playing on her lips, Sushmita Sur of the 1980 batch made an unusual disclosure at the interactive session, “Be the change-maker”, at the 17th Annual Alumni Meet. Her daughter had just joined the faculty at the Institute’s Department of Computer Science and Engineering. “There are different ways of giving back and having your children continue your legacy and contribute to the Institute is just another way,” said the proud mother. Her statement was greeted with thunderous applause and outside the Bhatnagar auditorium, she was thronged by her batchmates who took their turns to congratulate her. Some hours…
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Yeh Papa ka college hai…

Yeh Papa ka college hai…

“Papa yahan khelta thha?” lisped a 3-year-old Ghrishneshvar, as he pointed out to the Tata Steel sports ground, just opposite to the Ramanujan Complex. He, along with his elder sister, Ujjavalaa, both toddlers, were at IIT Kharagpur campus for the first time with their parents and elder brother Aayush, who is in IIT-BHU. Their father, Mr Ajit Kumar Alok, a 1995 alumnus of the Electrical Engineering Department of the Institute, was here to attend the 17th Annual Alumni Meet held at the campus from 10th to 12th January 2020. It was a sunny Saturday afternoon when The KGP Chronicle caught…
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Book Review: The Telecom Man

Book Review: The Telecom Man

Much to the surprise of friends and family, in 1991, Brijendra K. Syngal resigned from a plush, tax-free job with Inmarsat in London to head Videsh Sanchar Nigam Limited, an old-style, stodgy public sector company. Over the next seven years, Syngal transformed VSNL into a nimble new-generation telecom behemoth. By connecting India to the world through high-speed digital links, he was instrumental in the emergence of the Indian software sector as a global player. And in a move that would revolutionize the country and all our lives, he brought the internet to India in 1995. On Syngal’s watch, VSNL also…
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His story

His story

For the Diwali of 2019, the Delhi government held a laser show event for four days to keep people away from bursting crackers. For some years now, laser technology has quietly made its way into the hi-tech sound and light shows at several forts of Delhi, Rajasthan and Andhra and has even become a feature at permanent theme park installations. Indoor and outdoor laser multimedia shows are part of popular entertainment at sporting events, trade shows, corporate events, concerts, product launches and family parties that range from birthdays to stylized weddings. In other words, laser multimedia shows have arrived and…
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Back in time

Back in time

It was a homecoming of sorts. As Arjun Varma Kalidindi stood in front of the Chemical Engineering Department in the falling light, his mother, Usha, quickly clicked a few pictures. They had stolen these moments away from their visit to the Nehru Museum of Science and Technology with the members of the 32 teams who had come to participate in the IIT Kharapgur’s Young Innovator’s Program 2019. They just had to make this detour. Many aeons ago, Arjun’s grandfather - K. Satyanarayana Raju on our rolls, and later Dr. K.S.N Raju – would have walked those stretches many a time…
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Dream Catcher

Dream Catcher

“Farrokh’s passion is to have fun in providing an opportunity for highly motivated and talented people to learn how to define and achieve their dreams.” That is how University of Oklahoma’s Gallogly College of Engineering, Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, introduces the incumbent of its L.A. Comp Chair - Professor Farrokh Mistree. When I ask him about this rather unusual passion during his recent visit to IIT Kharagpur, Professor Mistree (1967/BTech/NA/AZ) tells me his life story. That is, his journey from being a student of naval architecture at IIT Kharagpur to holding the prestigious L.A. Comp Chair at the University of…
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Remembering Indramohan Asthana

Remembering Indramohan Asthana

“My buildings will be my legacy...they will speak for me long after I’m gone,” Julia Morgan, world famous architect, had said after a long and prolific career. Her sentiment would have been echoed by Indramohan Asthana, a much admired alumnus of IIT Kharagpur and a renowned architect. We are deeply saddened by his demise on the night of August 29, 2019. Asthana graduated from the Department of Architecture and Regional Planning with 1st Class Honours in 1959 and started his professional career as an architect the same year. And what an outstanding innings it turned out to be! His firm…
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A well deserved honour

A well deserved honour

The list of Young Alumni Achiever’s Award (YAAA) winners for 2019, announced recently by the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, straddles an amazing breadth of talent among young KGPians. The list not only includes pioneering researchers, indefatigable bureaucrats, police officers, change-makers, lawyers, film-makers, but also new-age entrepreneurs, some of whom are household names today. Among them are Abhinav Sinha, Chief Operating Officer, OYO Hotels and Homes, Chanakya Hridaya, Co-Founder & COO of BlackBuck, a company that is revolutionizing logistics in India, Nitin Babel, Co-founder at Niki.ai, a leading artificial intelligence company in India which is backed by Mr Ratan Tata,…
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