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IIIT Hyderabad Celebrates 25th Anniversary and Welcomes New Chairman, Prof. Ashok Jhunjhunwala

The International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad (IIIT-H), an autonomous research university, marks a significant milestone as it celebrates its 25th anniversary. This occasion is not only a reflection of its transformative journey but also a testament to its enduring commitment to education, research, and innovation. In conjunction with this celebration, IIIT-H proudly announces the appointment of its new chairman, Prof. Ashok Jhunjhunwala, who brings a wealth of visionary leadership and an unwavering passion for education to guide the institution toward new pinnacles of excellence. Prof. Raj Reddy, the founding chairman, has been an integral part of the institution since its inception in 1998 and was recognized for his decades of dedicated service.

Under the visionary leadership of Prof. P. J. Narayanan, the Director of IIIT-H, the institute has pioneered the "IIIT Hyderabad Model," resulting in the formation of 20 PPP IIITs across the country. This model, self-supporting and not government-supported, has served as a guiding force behind numerous state and national institutions, including T-Hub, Centre of Innovation & Entrepreneurship (CIE), 21st Century Gurukulams, RGUKT, National Institute of Smart Governance (NISG), and more.

In the realm of Data-Driven Research Rankings, IIIT Hyderabad stands as a formidable presence, ranking 1st in India, 30th in Asia, and 102nd in the world. The institution's current focus areas span a wide array of domains, from Signal Processing and Communications to Data Sciences and Analytics, Language Technologies, Robotics, Security, Theory and Algorithms, Smart Cities, Cognitive Science, Computational Social Sciences, and more.

IIIT-H's commitment to cutting-edge research is exemplified by various ongoing projects, such as iRASTE, a Road Safety Project, India Driving Dataset, Bodhyaan Platform, Biometric-Build deduplication and matching engines for UIDAI, Speech-to-Speech translation mission, bhAShiNi, and Live annotation of players in a cricket match with Star Sports.

The institute takes pride in its alumni network of 6000 strong individuals and its outreach to 6000 professionals through Executive Education Courses. Many alumni have gone on to become faculty members at prestigious institutions like IITs, ETH, and INRIA. Additionally, a significant number of alumni have embarked on successful careers at tech giants such as Microsoft, Google, and Amazon, while others have chosen the path of public service as IAS and IPS officers.

Prof. P. J. Narayanan expressed the institution's excitement and gratitude, stating, "We are extremely delighted to welcome Prof. Ashok Jhunjhunwala and look to his guidance in creating waves in the scientific world and garnering a top slot among global institutions. Simultaneously, we are grateful to Prof. Raj Reddy for his unstinted support and contribution to the growth of IIIT-H. His guiding light will always remain a mainstay of our existence. We are at the cusp of the institute’s lifecycle where the growth trajectory will make us a force to reckon with. We are a self-sustaining institute committed to building an inclusive society in our quest for nation-building."

Today, IIIT Hyderabad boasts a faculty of over 100, 22 research centers, 5 research translation centers, major applied AI initiatives, and one of the nation's largest academic incubators. It is renowned as a premier institution for computer science research and research-driven innovation, with its roots tracing back to a modest inaugural batch of 50 students and growing to accommodate nearly 1900 students today. IIIT-H excels in AI areas such as computer vision, machine learning, data mining, and Natural Language Processing, ranking among the top 5 institutions in CS/IT areas in the country.

The IIIT-H Kohli Centre for Intelligent Systems, established in 2015 with the support of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), continues to lead the charge in Intelligent systems research, driving lab discoveries into real-world applications for long-term societal impact. In collaboration with Intel, the institute established an Applied Artificial Intelligence Research Centre (INAI) in 2020, while also launching a Technology Innovation Hub under DST's NM-ICPS. Notably, around 5000 IIIT Hyderabad alumni are making substantial contributions across various institutions, roles, and geographical locations.

Prof. Raj Reddy, Founding Chairman of IIIT-H, expressed his pride in the institute's transformative journey and its dedication to research-oriented education. He noted, "Today, I pass the torch to the new Chairman, Prof. Ashok Jhunjhunwala, a capable visionary who will carry on the legacy we've established. I extend him a warm welcome. I am confident that the foundation we've established will thrive in the future. The institute's faculty, administration, and students are ready to carry on the institute's legacy of innovation and excellence."

In response, Prof. Ashok Jhunjhunwala, the New Chairman of IIIT-H, stated, "As I take over as chairman of this prestigious institute, I am both honoured and excited to carry on the legacy of excellence established by my predecessor and the dedicated team of faculty. The institution has achieved milestones, and I am determined to build on this solid foundation. My vision for the institute is to expand our horizons while maintaining our position as a hub for technological innovation and education. I believe in creating an environment that promotes interdisciplinary collaboration, where the lines between disciplines blur but research thrives at the intersections. We will continue to invest in world-class infrastructure, hire top-tier faculty members, and update our curricula to reflect the most recent industry trends in the coming years."

Founded in 1998, IIIT Hyderabad has redefined education and research paradigms with an unwavering commitment to nurturing curious minds, fostering creativity, and producing exceptional graduates who have become leaders and innovators in various fields.

About IIIT Hyderabad: The International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad (IIIT-H) is an autonomous research university founded in 1998, focusing on core areas of Information Technology, including Computer Science, Electronics and Communications, and their applications across domains. Through interdisciplinary research with significant social impact, IIIT-H spans research domains such as Visual Information Technologies, Human Language Technologies, Data Engineering, VLSI and Embedded Systems, Computer Architecture, Wireless Communications, Algorithms and Information Security, Robotics, Building Science, Cognitive Science, Earthquake Engineering, Computational Natural Sciences and Bioinformatics, Education Technologies, Power Systems, IT in Agriculture, and e-Governance.

About Prof. Ashok Jhunjhunwala: Prof. Ashok Jhunjhunwala is a renowned researcher known for creating various communication technologies, including Wireless in Local Loop (WLL) in the late 1990s. With a faculty tenure at IIT Madras since 1981, he has received accolades such as the Padma Shri in 2002 for his contributions. Prof. Jhunjhunwala's involvement in national initiatives has led to the establishment of the IIT Madras Research Park and advocacy for electric vehicles, DC power systems, and other impactful technologies.

About Prof. Raj Reddy: Prof. Raj Reddy has served as Chairman of the governing council of IIIT-H since its inception in 1998. He is a Mozah Bint Nasser professor at Carnegie Mellon University and is celebrated for founding the Robotics Institute at CMU. As a Turing Prize recipient and Padma Bhushan awardee, he has played a pivotal role in conceptualizing and implementing e-learning, the Digital Library of India, and the Rajiv Gandhi University of Knowledge Technologies in India. He also initiated the MSIT program at IIIT-H, bridging the gap between technical education and industry needs.


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