To mark 50 years of his association with his Alma Mater Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT Bombay), Nandan Nilekani, a billionaire and co-founder of tech giant Infosys, donated Rs 315 (dollar 38.5 Million) on June 20
MoU was formally signed today in Bengaluru by Nandan Nilekani and Prof. Subhasis Chaudhuri, Director, IIT Bombay
To mark 50 years of his association with his Alma Mater Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT Bombay), Nandan Nilekani, a billionaire and co-founder of tech giant Infosys, donated Rs 315 (dollar 38.5 Million) on June 20.
The donation will fund world-class infrastructure, research in emerging areas of engineering and technology, and a deep tech startup ecosystem at the premier institute.
This substantial contribution builds upon his previous grants of Rs 85 crores to the Institute, bringing the cumulative value of his support to his alma mater so far to Rs400 crores. This is the highest individual donation by an alumnus to IIT Bombay so far.
On July 19, 2021, A US-based alumni group of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay called the IIT Bombay Heritage Foundation (IITBHF) a non-profit charity group donated USD 50 million to its alma mater to celebrate its 25 years. The amount of USD 50 million was collected from over 3,300 donors.
For this, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was formally signed today in Bengaluru by Nandan Nilekani and Prof. Subhasis Chaudhuri, Director, IIT Bombay.
Officials of IIT B have said that this significant contribution serves as the anchor for IIT Bombay's ambitious vision to become a global leader among engineering and technology institutes and contribute significantly towards nation-building.
Nilekani joined IIT Bombay in 1973 for a Bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering. The donation marks the golden jubilee of Nilekani’s association with the institute and reflects the deep bond he continues to share with his alma mater. It also stands as one of the largest donations made by an alumnus in India.
Over the last 50 years, Nilekani has stayed connected with the Institute in multiple roles. He served on the Board of the IIT Bombay Heritage Foundation from 1999 to 2009 and was on the Board of Governors from 2005 to 2011. His initial contribution, totalling up to INR 85 crores over the years, was instrumental in constructing new hostels, co-financing the School of Information Technology, and establishing India's first university incubator, thereby significantly boosting the Indian start-up ecosystem. He was awarded the prestigious Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1999, followed by an Honorary Doctorate in 2019 as part of the 57th convocation of IIT Bombay.
Speaking about the donation, Nilekani who is also the founding Chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) said, “IIT Bombay has been a cornerstone in my life, shaping my formative years and laying the foundation for my journey. As I celebrate 50 years of my association with this esteemed Institution, I am grateful to give forward and contribute to its future. This donation is more than just a financial contribution; it is a tribute to the place that has given me so much and a commitment to the students who will shape our world tomorrow”.
Pegging it as the beginning of a new era of IIT Bombay, Director Prof. Subhasis Chaudhuri said, “We are extremely delighted to see our illustrious alumnus Nandan Nilekani continuing his foundational & pioneering contributions to the Institute. This historic donation will significantly accelerate the growth of IIT Bombay and will firmly set it on a path of global leadership. IIT Bombay is committed to building research and academic excellence that can make India a leader in scientific discovery and its translation toward solving the pressing challenges facing humankind. Nandan’s contribution will catalyse philanthropic contributions towards advancing research and development at universities in India.”
IIT Bombay’s strategic plan for the coming decade includes setting up world-class centers of excellence in strategic areas such as Artificial Intelligence, green energy, quantum computing, and others, nurturing a deep tech start-up eco-system, and providing best-in-class research, living and academic facilities to students and faculty. The plan envisages fundraising of about USD 500 million over the next five years. Nilekani’s anchor contribution of USD 38.5 million will help the Institute kick-start its plans and inspire others to join this transformative initiative.