Indore: Eminent educationist and one of the key architects of the Akash Project, Prof Deepak B Phatak joined as the Chairman, Board of Governors of IIT Indore on Saturday. Dr Phatak obtained his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from SGSITS Indore and his M.Tech and PhD from IIT Bombay. He has been serving with IIT Bombay since 1971 and has donned many roles in his illustrious career.
He has been the founding head of Kanwal Rekhi School of IT from 1998 to 2002, the first Dean of Resources of the institute from 1995 to 1998 and Head of the SJ Mehta School of Management from 2004 to 2005. He headed the CSE department of IIT Bombay from 1991 to 1994 and was Subrao M Nilekani Chair Professor from 2000 to 2013.
Prof Phatak started the country’s first interactive distance learning program using VSATs, which has now blossomed into the Centre for Distance Engineering Education (CDEEP). He set up the Affordable Solutions Lab (ASL) at IIT Bombay in 2000.
He is regarded as the pioneer of smart card usage in financial transactions in India. He also led the way in development of low cost devices such as Smart Card Reader and Clicker devices. He has been the Chairman of the National Board of IT Education and Research of All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE).
In 1983-84, Prof. Phatak helped setting up the department of Computer Science in his Alma Mater SGSITS, and initiated the BE program in Computers. He spent subsequent summer at DAVV Indore, to set up the Computer Centre and to initiate the MCA programme.
In the financial sector, he has been an IT advisor to SBI, RBI, UTI, IDBI, LIC, SEBI, NSDL, etc. He is a permanent invitee to the payment system Board of RBI, and also chairs the IT committee of SEBI.