“… Here in the place of that Hijli Detention Camp stands the fine monument of India today representing India’s urge, India’s future in the making. This picture seems to me symbolical of changes that are coming to India…”
Words of the then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru when he came to IIT KGP on 21st April 1956 which now has become the pioneering institute of Technology in the country established in the year 1951.
The campus is located in a pretty rural area where most of the students find accessibility a major issue. Kharagpur is at a distance of 120km from Kolkata. It can be reached in 2 and half to 3 hours from Howrah Station and 3 hours from the Kolkata airport. Kharagpur, is mainly famous for two things. First, the second longest platform in the country (well, it used to be longest a couple of years back) and second, obviously the IIT.
Campus and Infrastructure
KGPians (yes, they call themselves KGPians) are proud of many things which include the lush green 2200 acre campus which many just dream off, a 10000 capacity Tagore Open Air Theatre (TOAT) and an enriching history way back from the times of freedom struggle. Nehru Museum in the campus has all the memories of the freedom struggle which Kharagpur had a pivotal role. Going size wise, it may be surprising to know that the total area of Agriculture Department, IIT Kharagpur is more than the campus area of one of the IITs’. Even though the campus is located in a rural area, the college facilities have modernized a lot in last few years.
The facilities provided to student at the academic area are quite Good. IIT Kharagpur has the largest Digital library in the whole Asia. The campus is 24*7, fully WiFi enabled. There are facilities for each and every sport in the campus with Tata Steel complex and Gyan Ghosh Stadium the main centers for outdoor sports while Technology Students Gymkhana being the center of Indoor Games. Students maintain a local hub on DC++ to share each and everything you can imagine about at a very high speed.
Faculty and Attendance
The teaching provided to the students are at a premium level, given the professors have immense knowledge related to their subjects. The teachers at IIT KGP are highly experienced with numerous degrees and Ph.Ds.’ Still, as the student teacher relation goes, the students blame teachers and vice versa. There are some professors who are extraordinary and renowned while some are pretty ordinary and students find them just about tolerable.
Least attendance criteria is 75% before de-registration. While some professors take it too seriously, some doesn’t care at all. The rules are mended as per the wish of the professor taking the course.
Hostel life makes what KGP is known to the world. It has almost 10000 students which are in hostels situated in the campus. A total of 21 Halls of residence are there including both boys and girls hostel, the latest being B R Ambedkar Hall of Residence which is a co-ed residence. All the first years stay in triple rooms while the second years are allotted a double sharing or a triple sharing room depending on the hall. Generally from 3rd year onwards, each boarder gets a single room. The rooms in the old hostels are not up to the mark of IITs but the renovation of old rooms is going on which will be completed in a year or so. Only basic amenities are provided in IIT Hostels. The hostel life is so much happening with different competitions happening across the Halls of Residence spanning the whole year for a final General Championship. As said, the hostel life is the best life a student can experience. The ragging no longer takes place and the senior-junior relationship is a treat to watch here.
Festivals, Students and Extra-Academics
When a student enters IIT, he or she is just a kid with high hopes and aspirations but when he/she graduates, it is the experience that makes the person what he or she is rather than the degree. The campus of KGP provides a wide scope of personal improvement. It has all sorts of club from drama, music, literary to media, technical, management, business clubs. Sports and other opportunities are ample for grabbing. You name it, we have it. These activities are conducted in the institute by the students who are passionate about it.
As we know, IITs are famous for festivals. There are a numerous events happening all around the year. From numerous competitions to the departmental fests, but what steals the shows are the Spring Fest- the social cultural fest, Kshitij-Asia’s largest Techno-Management Fest and Alumni Meet. This fests boost up the students to cope up with the stress for all year literally.
Illumination is an extravaganza which KGP celebrates at Diwali as most of the students stay in KGP at Diwali and that is there way of celebrating Diwali.
Being in a rural area, hangouts and fun activities lower down on a good scale. This are not on the scale of metros, but KGPians find their ways. Students find happiness in their canteen and mess. The canteen serves decent and edible food at a nominal rate. Most of the items are junk food but tastes much better than the mess food. Each hostel has its own mess which are just like in any other typical college – average. Students aren’t completely satisfied and the complains are always in the air. There are a number night canteens, Nescafe and small vendors which makes the nights happening at Kharagpur.
There’s a tech market within the campus (nothing technical, just a name), Prem Bazaar just outside the campus and Gol Bazaar about 30 minutes from campus. Government owned restaurant Tikka (within the campus), Chhedis, Veggies, Billo, Sup-Dup etc. are popular restaurants or dhabas. Because of the recent developments, IIT Kharagpur’s student has now access to CCD, Subway, and Dominos. Outside the campus, students hang out at Little Sisters (LS), Sher-e-Punjab, Greenland, Flavours etc. Kharagpur does not have any big malls or theatres to chill out. A movie is screened every weekend in the campus for students at Netaji Auditorium but it’s tough that a new released movie is screened.
In A Nutshell
Not par with the IITs at the metro, but wouldn’t regret your stay here for sure.
Location: 2/5(Rural area but lush green)
On Campus Madness: 4/5
Strictness on Campus: 1/5
On Campus Housing: 2/5
Overall Crowd: 4/5
Party Scene: 4/5
What do you guys think? Please leave comments so I can make edits to the blog and incorporate everyone’s view!