Guwahati, Wednesday, September 23, 2020
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CM urges IIT-G graduates to become part of Govt’s start-up movement
Staff Reporter
 GUWAHATI, Sept 22 - The north-eastern region is emerging as the nerve centre of India’s economic activity on account of the Act East Policy, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal said today while addressing the 22nd convocation of the Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati (IIT-G) as a special guest through video conferencing.

 Sonowal said the Act East Policy has opened up new doors of opportunities in communication, transportation, trade and business, tourism, cultural exchange, sports, information technology and agriculture among other sectors, to link the North East with the ASEAN countries.

“Similarly, to promote industrialisation, the State government has also come up with a new policy on tax incentives for setting up industries and tourism units and formulated IT policy, biotech policy, startup policy, sugar policy, solar energy policy and Assam Industrial Investment Policy,” Sonowal said.

He requested the IIT-G graduates to become a part of the start-up movement launched by the State government, with their innovative ideas, knowledge and skills. Sonowal said his government would extend full support to the endeavours of the new graduates for setting up industries and start-up ventures in Assam.

The Chief Minister said that as an offshoot of the historic Assam Accord, IIT Guwahati has not only fostered an environment of academic excellence in the entire country with its quality technical education over the years, but has also extended support in the effort to make the nation self-reliant.

“At a time when society is going through a difficult phase because of the COVID-19 pandemic, IIT Guwahati has played its role in fighting the pandemic by providing various sophisticated instruments to the National Health Mission, Assam, and by developing, manufacturing and commercialising all the COVID-19-related kits in the State,” Sonowal said.

Presenting the Director’s report, IIT-G Director Prof TG Sitharam said that the research dimension of the institute is expanding significantly and is getting reflected in terms of multiple industrially-funded collaborative researches (with close cooperation) with industry partners.

“There are 291 research projects in progress with a total sanctioned value of about Rs 437 crore. In the year under review, we received 131 new projects with a sanctioned value of Rs 183 crore. A total of 153 new consultancy projects were carried out during the year. The total value of consultancy projects undertaken during this year is Rs 10.76 crore,” said Prof Sitharam.

He said that the faculty members of IIT-G have been actively publishing research papers in international and national journals. “The increase in research papers in journals is encouraging. The institute has applied for 31 patents in 2019-2020,” said the IIT-G Director.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the chief guest during the event and gave the convocation address online from New Delhi. Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ and Union Minister of State for Education Sanjay Dhotre also spoke during the convocation through video conferencing. A total of 1,803 students were awarded degrees during the event which was held on a ‘virtual mode’ on account of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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