United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi on Friday laid the foundation stone for the permanent campus of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Andhra Pradesh's Medak district.
The campus for the premier technology institute is coming up on 500 acres of land at a cost of Rs 10 billion in Kandi village, about 100 km from Hyderabad.
The IIT in Medak, the eighth IIT in the country, is temporarily running from an old ordnance factory at Eddumailaram with a first batch intake of 111 students in three engineering streams.
Addressing the students, Gandhi said she was confident that given time and adequate resources, IIT Medak would also make its own impact.
The Congress president said the government had renewed its focus on institutes of higher education in the country but a great deal of work still needs to be done.
"The UPA government has undertaken the process of renewing institutes of higher education in the country but we still have a great deal of work to do," she said.
Gandhi told the gathering that 30 new central universities including eight IITs would be set up across the country in the next three years.
She underlined the urgent need to spread higher education among the deprived sections of the society.
She said science and technology must act as powerful force against narrow-minded bigotry and intolerance.