The iconic Louis Kahn Plaza (LKP) and the red-brick campus at Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIMA) comprising faculty members, staff and academic associates—some 36 of them—have mounted a silent protest against IIMA Director and the Board of Governors (BoG). The protesting members wore ‘Restore IIMA Logo’ placards around their necks and took to Louis Kahn Plaza to hold ‘Meditation for Wisdom’ or ‘Sadbuddhi Dhyan’ to mark the silent protest.
This was the first time in the history of the six-decade-old IIMA that it expressed dissent by conducting silent protests.
The IIMA recently announced that its BoG had approved a new logo to make it more appealing globally, and changed the website also. IIMA BoG has also approved the plan to reconstruct a few buildings, including part of LKP designed by well-known American architect Louis Kahn. The dissent against the IIMA authorities is so fierce that one of the senior faculty members, Dean of Alumni and External Relations, Saral Mukhrejee, tendered his resignation.
“In April, IIMA BoG Chairman told everyone that the decision has been kept in abeyance and the director will consult people before making a decision. There was no consultation with faculty members. Just an hour before the decision was shared with the media in a press briefing, we got an email from the BoG informing us about the decision to change the logo,” said a member at IIMA.
People formerly associated with the IIMA also joined the protests. They have raised strong objections over the change of logo and the administration’s arbitrary ways of working.
When contacted, IIMA spokesperson said, “IIMA is known for following a model of faculty governance and the BoG continues to acknowledge and value the contributions of the Institute’s faculty members. As IIMA’s growth and ethos shape and adapt to global shifts, it realised the need to redesign its website to suit the requirements of the increasingly digitised world. It was also decided during this process to revisit and revise its visual identity, which is represented by the IIMA logo. As a process, a task force was formed to work on these initiatives. The task force conducted extensive research and considered the feedback it received from key stakeholders before making its recommendations to the board.”
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