Lack of teachers has proved to be the bane for three premier educational institutions in the State from getting the Unitary University status.
Though a Government task force on higher education headed by physicist Trilochan Pradhan recommended unitary university status to Khallikote College in Berhampur, Gangadhar Meher College in Sambalpur and Rama Devi Women’s College here way back in 2009, it was either the lack of teachers or inadequate land that prevented such institutions to get the desired status.
Each of the colleges requires 50 acres of land and adequate number of teachers to get the unitary university status. While the State Government has been making arrangements for the land component for the colleges, teacher vacancies are the biggest hurdle.
Principal of RD Women’s College Chitrangada Samanta Singhar said although the college is in possession of required infrastructure, it is grappling with teacher shortage. In case of Gangadhar Meher College it has in its present possession more than 38 acres in Sambalpur town instead of the required 50 acres. But there are only 46 regular teachers in the college against the sanctioned posts of 119.
Similar is the problem with Khallikote College, one of the oldest educational institutions of India. Higher authorities in the college said at present, the institution is in possession of around 20 acres of land. “We have learnt that State Government has decided to give us an additional 50 acres of land for expansion soon. While 40 acres of this is located near NIST, Palur Hills, another 10 acres is at Karapalli near Berhmapur University,” said an official. However, there are only 29 teachers at present against the sanctioned strength of 90.
One of the principals of these colleges informed that they are hopeful to overcome the lack of teachers since the State Government has decided to hire 800 teaching staff in the next three months. At present, the total vacancy of teachers in the entire State in both junior and degree colleges is above 2000.