Saturday, September 13, 2014
NRO ARGUES WHY K’HANDI DESERVES TRIBAL UNIVERSITY Sunday, 14 September 2014 | PNS | BHUBANESWAR | in Bhubaneswar
NRO ARGUES WHY K’HANDI DESERVES TRIBAL UNIVERSITY
Sunday, 14 September 2014 | PNS | BHUBANESWAR | in Bhubaneswar
As the Union Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) has given its nod for setting up a National Tribal University in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Bastar region to facilitate research and development of tribal culture and dialect, leading non-resident Odia (NRO) educationist Digambara Patra has lauded the move.
Prof Patra in a letter to Union HRD Minister Smriti Irani has said that earlier the Union Government has established Indira Gandhi National Tribal University (IGNTU) at Amarkantak and one of its regional campuses has been set up in Manipur.
Prof Patra has, therefore, urged the Union Government to set up a National University for tribals in Kalahandi. He has pointed out that Odisha is a tribals-dominated State. Odisha has a higher percentage of tribal population compared to Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, etc.
Therefore, based on the letter of former BJP MP late Bikram Keshari Deo regarding establishment of Central University of Odisha in Kalahandi instead of Koraput, earlier the MHRD had proposed to establish a tribal university campus in Kalahandi during the 11th Plan.
Information obtained through the RTI Act says the IGNTU at Amarkantak has already received a proposal from the MHRD to open a regional campus in Kalahandi. The Odisha Government was informed to provide infrastructure facilities like a minimum 300 acres of land, approach road and electricity.
Following it, the then Kalahandi Additional District Magistrate had identified the required 300 acres of land at Benda Jhola and Kumudabahal villages in Thuamul-Rampur panchayat samiti of the district and informed about it to the State’s Department of Higher Education.
Since then, no action has been taken by the MHRD. On the other hand, the MHRD has acted immediately on the proposal of the Chhattisgarh Government and is considering a similar proposal for Andhra Pradesh. It is surprising that the MHRD has not acted on the promise it made to Kalahandi people with regard to a tribal university, Prof Paztra has stated.
He has pointed out that the site identified by the Kalahandi district administration is located at the heart of tribal populations of the districts of Kandhamal, Nabarangpur, Koraput, Malkangiri, Nuapada, Rayagada, Gajapati, Kalahandi, Balangir, Boudh, Bargarh, Sambalpur and Subarnapur serving one of the largest tribal concentrations in Odisha as well as in India.