Junior Research Fellow (JRF) at the IIT-Kharagpur
Soon after I finished my Master's Degree at the University of Leeds, UK, I came back to my own country India and started the new role as a Project Assistant to work on the 'Urban Kolkata's Flood Modelling (UKFM)' at the Department of Civil Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur under the supervision of Professor Dhrubajyoti Sen. It was a consultancy project which was mainly focused on the flooding problems of Kolkata and we looked into the issues with different perspectives by integrating both the engineering (sewer systems) as well as social (urbanisation, congestions, population growth) aspects for providing solutions to the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) and Irrigation & Waterways Department (I&WD), Government of West Bengal for the city's flood management. I was indeed a great opportunity to develop new knowledge (which was completely different from the glaciers and high mountain hydrology) and I was enable to gain new software skills using the Stormwater Management model (SWMM). In collaboration with the Srijon Microsystems (a private consultancy firm based in Kolkata), we have developed a real-time rainfall and flood monitoring system [link] to provide live rainfall and flood information to the city dwellers.
After the successful completion of this consultancy project, I have been offered a research fellowship to work as a Junior Research Fellow (JRF) on the research project entitled 'Impact of Climate Change on flow and sediment in the Rivers of Eastern India' in the School of Water Resources (within the Department of Civil Engineering under the same supervisor [Prof. DJ Sen]. In this project, we did a long-term rainfall-runoff simulation using ArcSWAT to understand how the climate change made impacts on flow and sediments and how these are likely to be impacted under the IPCC’s projected precipitation and temperature increase in the future.
Additionally, during my employment tenure at the IIT, I have also made significant contribution in another project entitled the 'Morphological Studies of the River Mahanadi, Mahananda and Hooghly using Remote Sensing Technique (RMAH)' in the satellite image processing and GIS analysis parts. Simultaneously with my main project work, I was also involved in the State Specific Action Plan (SSAP) for providing the state level water budget information of West Bengal to the Ministry of Jal Shakti, Department of Water Resources, RD & GR, Government of India for their newly taken initiative of National Water Mission [NWM].
I believe that my role was very challenging but at the same time was very exciting and it gave me the exposure to learn new skills and further development of my knowledge in domains of hydrology, flood risk, climate change using a range of multi-disciplinary approaches, which ultimately enabled me to develop my confidence level and skills required for doing cutting-edge PhD research in these disciplines. Also to work for India's oldest and the first IIT (i.e. IIT-Kharagpur) is itself a matter of pride for me and I enjoyed every moment of my work life in the IIT-Kharagpur campus.
Figure: Administrative building and the landmark of the IIT-Kharagpur and the B R Ambedkar Hall of Residence.