CUTTACK: Even as the Government is yet to announce the new location of Ravenshaw Junior College, it seems to be zeroing on a site at Jobra here.
The Government has asked the district administration to take expedient steps to clear encroachments on around 3.30 acres of land under Unit-25 at Jobra. Plans are on to start construction of hostels and staff quarters that can be commonly used both by the Ravenshaw University and Junior College.
The Registrar of the University has been entrusted with the job of filing an eviction case under Odisha Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Act following which an eviction drive would be launched by the Tehsildar, Cuttack.
The University is, in fact, set to file the case within next week. “Necessary procedures will be set in motion as soon as Vice-Chancellor Prof Prakash Chandra Sarangi resumes office by the beginning of next week,” said Registrar Padan Kumar Jena.
The land in question has been considered for locating the college after the earlier proposal made by a high power committee under the Chief Secretary to shift the college to 1.76 acres of land in Malgodown was found grossly unsuitable by the Orissa High Court. The Registrar (Judicial) of the High Court had examined the site and reported it to be unsuitable as it is located within the chaotic Malgodown commodities market and also does not have appropriate approach road.
The subsequent proposal to shift the college to Jobra, where land had been allotted in its name, has also drawn stiff opposition both on counts of the unsuitability of the location as well as inadequacy of land. While located adjacent to the fish market, almost bulk of the land is under encroachment of private individuals and Government departments like Police and Cuttack Municipal Corporation. Only around 0.67 acre of land is available for immediate occupation.
The Higher Education Department, though, has left the decision on shifting of the college to the proposed location or any other site to the high-level committee under the Chief Secretary. A meeting will be convened in this connection soon, sources said.
Shifting of the junior college has become imperative as learning and academic activities at Plus Two level have been affected due to the expansion and increase in strength of the University. The Junior College has more than 2,000 students.
The student strength has forced the University authorities to make adjustments with Plus Two classes assigned to the morning hours. Plus Two students occupy the classrooms till noon and also the laboratories till further hours which has posed problems for the under-graduate and post-graduate streams.
The Orissa High Court has taken note of the situation and directed the Government and University authorities to take speedy steps to shift the college.