Yes, it is true. I was `interviewed' by a Times of India reporter some time ago and I forgot about it. Today in my mailbox I found a copy of the Student Edition of the Times of India of September 6, 2011 Bangalore edition [no ecopies, I believe]. On page 6, Bangalore is featured as `More than a silicon city' by Ruth Dhanaraj, and several Institutions are featured. They say of the Indian Institute of Science:
``As famous as the Indian Institute of Science is today, not many people know the story behind its inception. The idea for an institute that would contribute that would contribute to India's development was long a dream of Jamsetji N Tata. During a chance encounter with Swami Vivekananda aboard a ship in 1893, they discussed this idea. Five years later, JN Tata invited Swami Vivekananda to be part of the committee that would draft a plan for an institute of research and higher education.
Bangalore was suggested as the best place to base the institute and IISc was eventually founded in 1909. The campus sits on 400 acres of land most of which was donated by the Maharaja of Mysore. Though the institute began with only two department: General and Applied Chemistry and Electro-Technology, today its ambit extends to almost all branches of science and engineering.''
``I have been with IISc for the past 15 years and it is a great place to work. I am sure one cannot find a better place elsewhere. At my time of joining this institute, I have five other offers in hand, but I have never had reason to regret my decision. I had finished my higher education in the US and Switzerland; I will say there is no place like IISc.
Here there is complete academic freedom as well as a vibrant intellectual atmosphere. Compared to other colleges there is a lot of world class research going on here. We also have highly trained, international faculty here. Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, winner of the 2009 Nobel Prize for Chemistry has accepted a chair with us and will be spending time here -- not many other institutes can give you that!''
--B Ananthanarayan, chairperson, Centre for High Energy Physics, IISc
[Some minor inconsistencies and for the record, the five offers were including IISc,
and I said internationally trained faculty, and not trained, international faculty,
but in general for a telephone interview, it is quite faithful to what I said. I will try and upload a scanned copy, if I get around to it.]