Vasvik Awards

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January 30 2015

In a rare instance of deja vu, Dr Hemant Darbari, Executive Director, C-DAC, Pune became the third C-DAC representative to be honoured with the prestigious VASVIK Award for his contributions to the field of Information and Communication Technology. Dr Darbari received the Vasvik Award at the hands of Shri Piyush Goyal, Hon'ble Minister of State for New and Renewable Energy, Power & Coal, Government of India at a glittering formal function held at Mumbai, today. Also present on the occasion were Shri Amrish Patel, President, Shri Vile Parle Kelavani Mandal, Dr. Mohanbhai. I. Patel, Chairman, Board of Directors, VASVIK, Prof. M. M. Sharma, Chairman, Board of Advisors, VASVIK, and other officials along with the awardees.

The award was presented to Dr Darbari for the year 2013 in recognition of efforts towards the development of Computer Assisted Translation Systems, Natural Language Based Information Extraction / Retrieval System, Packages for learning Indian languages through Artificial Intelligence and HPC systems.. Earlier, this award had been bagged by Prof Rajat Moona, Director General, C-DAC and Dr Pradeep K Sinha, Sr Director (Corp Strategy & R&D), C-DAC for the years 2010 and 2011 respectively.

Darbari recived vasvik awardsAddressing the media after the awards ceremony, Dr. Hemant Darbari expressed his sincere gratitude to the VASVIK awards committee for taking cognizance of his efforts in technology innovation. He also thanked all his peers, colleagues and students " who have been instrumental in making me work hard to reach this level of recognition. This is a proud moment for me, and I would like to share the joy and credit with all my colleagues at C-DAC who have supported me unconditionally in taking the organization forward. The award is also a reaffirmation of our faith in indigenous technology development and gives succour to our capabilities in multilingual computing as the primary catalyst for the proliferation of ICT in India".

One of the founding members of C-DAC and as the Executive Director of the Pune centre of C-DAC, Dr. Darbari is primarily associated with driving the R&D roadmap in the multi specialty domains of High Performance and Grid Computing, Multilingual Computing, Software Technologies, Health Informatics, and Education & Training.

In his initial role and capacity of Program Co-coordinator of Applied Artificial Intelligence Group (AAIG) of C-DAC, he has to his credit successful implementation of projects like MANTRA (Machine assisted Translation Tool), LILA (Learn Indian Languages through Artificial intelligence), Quester (NLP based Information Extraction system), Shrutlekhan (A Hindi Speech to Text System), Shruti-Drishti (Web Browsing through Listening for Visually Impaired), and so on. Dr. Darbari is a recipient of the prestigious "Computerworld Smithsonian Award Medal" from the Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC for his outstanding work on MANTRA which is also a part of "The 1999 Innovation Collection" at the National Museum of American History, Washington DC, USA.

An alumnus of the prestigious IIT - Rourkee, Dr.Darbari research interests include Artificial Intelligence, Natural Language Processing, Machine assisted Translation, Information Extraction and Information Retrieval, Intelligent Language Tutoring systems, Speech Technology, Mobile computing, Decision Support System and Simulations, High Performance Computing and Security. He has to his credit, 85 Technical Papers that have been published in national & international Journals & Conference Proceedings.

His academic stints include "Visiting Research Fellowship as Adjunct Professor" from IRCS, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA, in 1997 and "UNDP Fellowship as Visiting Professor" in 1989 & 1990 at Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, USA and Institute of Furtwangan, Freiburg, Germany.

Besides this, Dr.Darbari also lends his expertise as the Principal/ Chief Investigator of the projects in the state-of-the-art technologies from the Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Communications & Information Technology, Ministry of Defense, and the Rajya Sabha Secretariat.

Vividhlaxi Audyogik Samshodhan Vikas Kendra (VASVIK) is a non-profit, non-government organisation established in 1974 and run by the Patel Family of Mumbai, who are the owners of the Patel Extrusion Group, with ISO 9002 certified companies. Vasvik research awards are presented in different categories like Agricultural sciences, Biological sciences, Electrical sciences, ICT, Material sciences, etc. to scientists and researchers who have excelled in their particular field. Former recipients of the award include Shri F C Kohli, Former Dy Chairman, TCS, Dr Vijay Bhatkar, Former Executive Director, C-DAC, Dr. R Narasimhan, Former Professor of Eminence, TIFR, Dr Surendra Prasad, Former Director, IIT, Delhi, Prof L M Patnaik, Eminent Professor, IISc & Former Vice Chancellor, DIAT, and other eminent personalities.

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