News East West
MUMBAI: For the first time in the history of IIT Bombay, a B.Tech degree was conferred posthumously on a student who died of blood cancer last September.
There were poignant moments when Indian Railway locomotive driver Siddarth Dhoke (seen in the middle in the above picture) came down from Nagpur to Mumbai to accept the B.Tech degree for his deceased son Akshay Dhoke recently.
A brilliant student, Akshay ranked 119th in the IIT entrance exam in 2008. He joined the electrical engineering dual degree course with specialization in microelectronics in 2008. But in September 2011 when he complained of pain in his joints and fever he was diagnosed with blood cancer.
He was given initial treatment at the IIT campus hospital. Amid his early treatment, he had taken his seventh semester exams, missing only a few papers.
Akshay was later admitted to Tata Memorial Cancer Hospital where he underwent chemotherapy treatment and a bone marrow transplant.
According to Akshay’s mother Sarbani, her son had “shown some recovery’’ as his friends collected Rs 5 lakh for his treatment abroad. But he lost the battle to blood cancer in September 2012.
“Akshay appeared for the seventh semester exam and had got all credits required for a BTech by then. So, we decided to award his degree posthumously to honour his hard work and talent,” said Abhay Karandikar, head of the department of electrical engineering.
Also a brilliant cricketer, Akshay represented Nagpur at the state level.