Back in the year 2003, IIT Madras started exploring ways of helping disadvantaged sections of the society through technology intervention. Subsequently, a meeting of IIT faculty, NGOs, Government departments, Bankers, etc. was organized in January 2004. Participants in this meeting debated on structuring development of technical solutions to social problems. An outcome of this meeting was the sanction of Rs. 10 lakhs by the Director, IIT Madras for funding projects with immediate social relevance and this initiative was named as “Socially Relevant Projects”. A condition for getting the funding for projects under this program is that the idea for the project should get initiated by an NGO or a Governmental Agency or concerned citizens. These projects are undertaken by the faculty members of I.I.T Madras, with assistance from the students and supporting staff. Five projects completed under this program. Currently, alumni of 1967 batch and 1981 batch are funding several projects under this program.
RAMACHANDRAN JAIKUMAR PROJECT FOR RURAL TECHNOLOGIES
(AN INITIATIVE BY 1967 BATCH ALUMNI)
1967 batch alumni of IIT Madras have initiated a program in the fond memory of one of their batch mates, DR. Ramachandran Jaikumar, with an initial funding of Rs. 17 Lakhs. Under this program, known as Ramachandran Jaikumar Project for Rural Technologies (RJPRT), two projects have been completed.
INITIATIVE BY 1981 BATCH ALUMNI
The Class of 1981 of the IIT Madras Alumni has, of their total funding, allocated Rs. 30 lakhs for Socially Responsible Projects requiring that the funds should be utilized for projects that would leverage the strengths of IIT Madras to improve social conditions in India. Under this program, eight projects have been completed / initiated so far.