The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) has asked the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) to intervene in the ongoing row between the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi and the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation over the latter selling the branding rights of the IIT Metro station to private coaching institute FIITJEE as part of a revenue generation exercise.
Batting in favour of the concerns raised by IIT-Delhi, the HRD ministry has reportedly written to Secretary MoHUA Durga Shanker Mishra seeking his personal intervention in the matter. The premier engineering institute had raised a red-flag over the name ‘FIITJEE-IIT’ emblazoned on the Metro station, on grounds that it gave out an incorrect impression that IIT-Delhi had some form of a collaboration with the coaching institute.
Endorsing the institute’s concerns, the HRD ministry’s letter to Mishra says that FIITJEE’s association with IIT-Delhi, even though only on the facade of a Metro station, gives an incorrect impression that it is coaching engineering aspirants in association with IIT-Delhi, The Indian Express reported citing sources.
The MHRD has sought Mishra’s personal intervention in the matter to ensure that people are not misled into believing that the IIT-Delhi is in any way associated with a coaching institute, The Indian Express report said.
Notably, the institute had also moved the Delhi High Court against the naming of a nearby Metro station as ‘FIITJEE IIT Metro station’ arguing that such coupling of names is misleading people and “tarnishing the image” of the institute.
The institute also informed the court that it had received letters and complaints from alumni, parents, and aspirants asking if FIITJEE was the “official” coaching partner for aspirants looking to get admission in IIT.
“Many parents, alumni, and prospective students are asking us whether we have tied up with the coaching institute, which is unacceptable and misleading. We have moved court on this,” ANI quoted V Ramgopal Rao, Director of IIT-Delhi, as saying earlier.
Speaking to The Indian Express earlier, Rao said that the development only camer to the knowledge of the institute when the signage was put up. He said that when IIT approached the DMRC, they were told that the contract had already been given to FIITJEE, and that nothing could be done.
According to Rao, the DMRC said that if the contract had to be breached, IIT should compensate FIITJEE. “We said why should we pay? So, we went to the Delhi High Court,” he told IE.