Institutes heads of IITs, IIITs, IISERs, IISc and NITs in a virtual briefing with Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’, union minister of education, Sanjay Dhotre, minister of state for education, Amit Khare, secretary, higher education ministry of education, spoke about how they have been imparting online classes and handling the COVID-19 situation for students.
The Institutes detailed their COVID-19 management strategy and also voluntary service extended to local administration for awareness and supply of necessary support for management of the situation in the respective State. The Institutes also briefed about the vaccination drive undertaken for the campus residents in consultation with local administration and as per the guidelines.
Some Initiatives Undertaken by IITs, NITs and IIITs While Conducting Online Classes
- Online classes are being conducted for students ever since the lockdown was announced in India in March 2020.
- Some of the institutions have also developed their own app for online teaching and evaluation.
- For students facing connectivity issues, the lecture contents were made available even for later use which they could download from anywhere and study.
- Teachers have been guiding and interacting with students all throughout online classes, the directors of the institutes informed.
Other Highlights of the Meeting with IITs, NITs and IIITs
The main discussion was on the Research undertaken by these institutions of National importance in tackling the COVID situation. The union education minister commended the institutes in developing low-cost RT-PCR machines, kits, ventilators, mathematical modelling of predicting the trend of COVID-19 and successfully placing them at the disposal of State Health Departments. Many of the research products have been commercialised through the Incubation Cells and Startups set up by these Institutes.
Few of the notable research work done by these institutions includes the development of Corona testing kit ‘Corosure’, research for the development of a vaccine which can be stored at room temperature, Genome sequencing to identify the variants of Corona Virus, ‘COVIRAP’ device for rapid diagnostic of pathogenic infection, methods to optimize use of Oxygen in ventilators, development of Oxygen concentrators, and low-cost portable ventilators among others. The institutes have also made significant headway in implementing the National Education Policy, with IISc Bangalore and IIT Kharagpur set to begin courses in Medical sciences.