News Release

IIT Kharagpur Celebrates Golden Jubilee on Next Generation E-learning Platforms

Cisco is preferred vendor for the most ambitious networking project ever to be undertaken at an Indian educational institute
Jun 18, 2001

NEW DELHI, India -- 18 June 2001 -- The Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, India's premier technical institute, today announced its plan to set up the most ambitious network ever to be set up at an Indian educational institution. This Cisco Powered Network will link every hostel room, lab, classroom and tutorial to set up the most comprehensive e-learning platform ever to be set up in India.

This project is part of IIT Kharagpur's Golden Jubilee Partnership Program, which is supported by the US-based IIT Foundation, set up by the alumni of IIT Kharagpur. Under the auspices of this Program, the IIT Foundation plans to invest Rs. 30 crore establish and upgrade IIT Kharagpur's educational and research facilities in a bid to take the Institute to higher levels of academic excellence.

Speaking about this initiative, Prof. M.N. Faruqui, IIT Foundation Professor at IIT Kharagpur said: "The key driver for setting up such a campus-wide network was to provide our students with facilities inline with those available at the best technical institutes world-wide. It has been acknowledged that we have the finest technical talent pool and it is our aim, at IIT Kharagpur, to deliver the best technology to train and teach our students. Cisco was the automatic choice for setting up such a network since they had the entire range of networking solutions that we were keen to implement.

The Campus-wide network will provide an Ethernet port to every hostel room. Every student will be provided with a PC at a highly subsidised cost and will just need to plug in to access the high-speed 24x7 Internet connection. Cisco in partnership with HCL Comnet is laying the fibre optic cables across IIT Kharagpur to set up the network backbone on Gigabit Ethernet. This network will be connected to the Internet gateway being set up by HCL Comnet. This network will provide the students access to streaming voice, video and data access over the Web.

Moreover, IIT Kharagpur is enabling a powerful e-learning platform based on Cisco Content Delivery solutions. This solution will provide the students the option to learn, study and attend lectures in their own time. This will also help students of other educational institutes to share and read lecture material from IIT Kharagpur. Further, Cisco is implementing an end-to-end Security and Intrusion Detection System to secure the network.

Above and beyond setting up the network backbone and implementing key solutions, Cisco is also investing in setting up an Advanced Networking Research Lab to promote research on Cisco's Architecture for Voice, Video and Integrated Data (AVVID) platform. Students will use the Lab not only to learn up on the latest in IP-based communications technologies but also provide an opportunity to work on the cutting edge Cisco technology. Given the nature of the project, Cisco has provided all the equipment to IIT Kharagpur on a special Educational discount with some of the products actually having been given as an outright grant.

Jangoo Dalal, VP Enterprise Sales, Cisco Systems India said: "IIT Kharagpur's initiative to network the campus is unarguably the first of its kind for an Indian institution. Such an investment is crucial to bring the best talent in the world in touch with the best technology to make sure that India stays competitive in the global IT arena."

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