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Indian Business Club Honors Indus Technovators

Ranjani Saigal

Nine South Asian innovators and entrepreneurs were awarded The Global Indus Technovators Awards 2005  for their outstanding contributions in their respective fields. Dr. Amit Goyal  and Dr. Yagyensh (Buno) Pati  were the winners in the area of Materials/Devices while Dr. Ravi Bellamkonda , Dr. Nimmi Ramanujam , Dr. Krishnendu Roy  were honored for their work in the area of Biotech/Med/Healthcare.  The awards for grassroots development/ energy was awarded to Dr. Balaji Sampath , AID Chennai, Dr. Vikram Sheel Kumar and Dr. Vishwanath Anantraman . Dr. Pravin Bhagwat  and Mr. Rizwan Virk  shared the awards for Information Technology.

The awards were presented at a ceremony held at the Wong Auditorium (MIT) on Jan 24, 2006. “I was pleasantly surprised to hear about the nomination” said Dr. Amit Goyal who is Task Manager and Leader for Superconducting Materials Research in the Metals & Ceramics Division at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. “I think this award helps raise the awareness of the work done by South Asians and I commend the Indian Business Club of MIT for creating this award”

For Rizwan Virk, CEO of CambridgeDocs receiving the award at MIT was special. “It is always a pleasure to come back to my alma mater.  I like the concept of this award. I hope the publicity it gets can serve as encouragement to other young technologists of South Asian origin”

The directors of the Indian Business Club were pleased with the nominations they received. “We received over a hundred nominations. It was a wonderful experience to get to know the excellent work that is being done by many South Asians around the globe” said Gagan Saini,, Director, IBC who is currently doing his Ph.D at MIT.

Members of the IBC served on screening committees to identify potential nominees. “I was working on the Grassroots Development and Energy section. It was overwhelming to see the passion people have for helping others. It was also awe-inspiring to see how innovative technology can have far reaching impact on people’s lives” said Lavanya Marla , an IIT Chennai graduate who is currently a student at MIT.

Mr. d'Arbeloff who founded Teradyne, Inc, presented the keynote address. He gave an insightful talk on commercializing technology. “For commercializing a technology you must answer two questions – What do you know about the technology and what do you know about the market.” He urged technologists to partner with people who know the business angle so as to ensure successful commercialization of their product.

There was a  panel discussion moderated by Mr. Joe Forgione, President and Chief Executive Officer, mValent Inc, with all the awardees serving on the panel. Forgione’s opened the discussion by asking the panelists to identifying a potential disruptive technology in individual areas that the giants in their areas are not paying much attention to. Dr. Pravin Bhagwat referred to the community-based wireless technology that can potentially revolutionize wireless networking. Dr. Bhagwat  has built such test networks using off-the shelf products in Kanpur, India.  Each panelist gave a brief overview of their work and listening to them it was clear that they are going to change the course of technology in the world.

Click here to learn more about the awardees.


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